All Romance E-books will be closing on 12/31/2016.
They abruptly made this announcement on 12/28 -- giving authors and readers only days to come to terms with what was going on.
Because not only did owner Lori James announce the closure -- she also emailed publishers and let them know that they could sign an agreement and receive 10 cents on the dollar for their sales -- as she didn't have enough money to pay out full royalties for Q4 2016 -- Oct 1 thru Dec 31.
So instead of my publisher receiving thousands of dollars at the end of this quarter they could either take a few hundred OR end up having to deal with lawyers and bankruptcy court.
And it's not just my publisher. It's many of the romance publishers many of you read. It has impacted the whole genre and it has left many reeling.
To add another wrinkle, I had three books under contract with All Romance, as they'd gotten into the publishing arena a couple of years ago. Two had been published -- Between Him and a Hard Place and Chained to the Tiger's Bed.
A third, Hitman, was slated for a 2/1/2017 release.
In order to get my book rights back, I would have to agree to forego any royalties made within that time, or else, my contracts could be sold to the highest bidder or held by Lori for the full three years. My books would then be considered assets to be leveraged against her debt to other publishers.
Unfortunately, I took the latter deal. I won't have my work being held hostage. I've lost a considerable about of money -- and writing is my full-time job. This loss is going to hurt.
BUT I have these books back. After a tweak or two and new covers, TEP will be re-releasing the first two and releasing Hitman on 2/1/2017, just as originally planned.
Also... she has only given readers four days to back-up and download their books. For many who were loyal customers, they literally have dozens of pages worth of downloads to go through -- and with many readers doing the same -- the website is doing down over and over again.
If you are a reader and have purchases there, I highly suggest you get on before the site goes dark and DL your titles. TEP has announced that if anyone struggles to DL one of their titles, send them a copy of your purchase -- a receipt, a screenshot, whatever you can to prove you purchased the book -- and they will ensure you get a copy from them.
It is reprehensible what this woman is doing to the author and reader community. I hope she's held accountable for her actions...
Too many have taken advantage of authors. A multitude of publishers have closed over the year, many of them leaving behind month upon month of pain with non-payments, refusal to return rights to authors, and simple bullshit behavior. For a retailer -- a retailer many held to a higher standard -- one that had been in business for a decade without showing any outward signs of issues -- it is a hard pill to swallow.
We will survive. We always do.
And I would imagine there will be a lot of villains named Lori in many a book to come in the near future... and I suspect they will die a long, torturous, and painful death by the end.