PublishAmerica’s “Brand New Start”: Independence Books

Seems to me that this latest “offer” from PublishAmerica speaks volumes. What it says should be fairly obvious to even the most naive writer.

(For some background on PA’s other recent offers, see this thread at Absolute Write.)

-Ann C. Crispin
Chair, Writer Beware


From: “”
To: [email address redacted]
Sent: Tue, July 13, 2010 12:57:52 PM
Subject: A new start for your book

Dear author:

Sometimes a book deserves a new start.

Not labeled in book vendor databases as POD.
A low list price.
A new publisher.


Independence Books.

Independence Books is our new subsidiary. It is treated as an independent publisher. Not registered as POD in vendor databases. Not registered as PublishAmerica. Uniform list prices are $14.95.

Want a new start for your book? We will cause it to be published as an Independence Books title. It will receive a new ISBN and the new $14.95 list price. It will not show as POD. It will not list as PublishAmerica. ISBN-fed databases will show that your book is an Independence Books book, readily available from Independence Books.

Go to, find your softcover, add to cart, use this discount coupon: IndyBooks40. Minimum volume is 7 softcovers. For 12 or more softcovers use the IndyBooks45 coupon.

This will cause your book to be published as an Independence Books title. It will no longer be available from us as a PublishAmerica softcover. (Your book’s paperback or hardback versions, if already activated, will keep their PublishAmerica designation.) Your order today will be printed under the new Independence Books logo (, with its new ISBN. Transfer may take up to 6-8 weeks to be completed and will be permanent. Book remains under contract with PublishAmerica. Use this coupon for your softcover only; other applications will not be processed. PublishAmerica’s online bookstore will re-list the book as an Independence Books title generally within 24 business hours. Other vendors may do so at their discretion.

Thank you.

–PublishAmerica Author Support Team


  1. If you are serious about getting free from a corrupt contract with PublishAmerica, Please sign up?
    PublishAmerica must be stopped from its persistently arrogant crimes.

    Please e-mail your particulars to me at: You may also reach me by telephone at: 617-566-2524.
    Thank you and please inform others of the building class action litigation.

  2. Renee said: "Recently it's been 'my book on tv, oprah and in the New York Times'. Right."

    Well, they've created so much of their own scalding hot water with that program. Google PA Vs. LSI lawsuit to see what I mean.

  3. I like how they don't say they are going to "do" anything. They are going to "cause it to be".
    They're a bunch of unscrupulous louts no matter what they pretend.

    I hope more new writers will do an internet search of publishers before they sign anything.

    Thanks again Writer Beware, for all the awesome stuff you do!

  4. Yep, I was one of those new authors a couple of years ago. Still under contract, as I was too naive (okay, stupid and eager to publish) to consider how long a seven year contract really was. No royalties since 2009. They're in 'litigation' and so they can't pay me.

    I receive at least one email a day like the one posted, usually more than that. Recently it's been 'my book on tv, oprah and in the New York Times'. Right.

    I strongly advise new authors to research and go with that voice that whispers, "Too good to be true, you knucklehead".

  5. "Independence Books" is already building a case file with the online BBB. As some authors are just finding out the BBB will not help them, because it is considered a B2B transaction. It is important for anyone that is a quality author and has been scammed by Publishamerica to get the word out and warn others.
    I still see daily posts of new authors crying over signing with PA.

  6. Sheesh. If that's not an admittance that their name is associated with poor quality then I don't know what is.

  7. Then I notice that suddnly on their site is a much smaller Daily Reader but just for FM written by one of their editors who was supposed to edit my manuscript.

    Sheryl Ann, this is a very serious charge. (And there's no book about fibromyalgia currently on their site written by any PublishAmerica employee, BTW; the only other books I see on the topic are by people named Sonneman and Walker, neither of whom is an employee of PublishAmerica.)

    If you have any documentation of this, please forward it to the good people here at Writer Beware.

    Also, please be more specific about identifying the "editor"*, because right now your comment could be interpreted as casting aspersions on Ms. Sonneman and Ms. Walker, who are not PublishAmerica employees but people like you who are victims of their unscrupulous marketing and poor service.

    (*Note: PublishAmerica does not provide actual editing for the manuscripts it receives, as has been documented by many authors and sting artists to date. Sometimes they run the spell-check on the file, but that can actually create new errors that didn't previously exist.)

  8. "PublishAmerica's online bookstore will re-list the book as an Independence Books title generally within 24 business hours."

    No one needs to let the cat out of the bag. Book vendors use Google so no matter what name they use, it's still going to be linked to PA.

  9. All great comments. Call me desperate, but now I'm in a real bad position and am in emergency situation for me needing HELP.
    I went with PA for my 2nd book (my 1st one was publshed with them and I'm a Canadian so summer of 09 they took all Cdn Authors and put our books at which got my book better coverage and sales).
    So, after doing lots of research which showed that there is NO Daily Reader book for those with Fibromyalgia & Chronc Fatigue, because I have that illness, run a non proft for that and have writing skills I write a Daily Reader book manuscript given to them Feb of 09 asking that it be avaiable by May12 Int'l FM-ME Aware Day. I heard nothing after a couple of months and sent hundreds of emails and made demanding phone calls that winter as I hadn't heard from them.
    Then I notice that suddnly on their site is a much smaller Daily Reader but just for FM written by one of their editors who was supposed to edit my manuscript. I couldnt' get out of my contrac with them and I just about signed on with another online entity which I was then sent by a writing friend to Scientific WRiters of America website who have listing of writers agents and publishers to watch out for.
    Publish America was now flyng into action had my book done and up on their webste when I suddenly this week broke into #2 huge prblem with them I can't get any bookstore to bring books in to then have me do a reading/singing, nor get my face into newspapers for PA wants to charge the bookstore $12.95 per book shipping & Handling. This is unheardof. My bookstore orders internationally and she say that for a box of 10-17 books she will only pay $12.95 S&H Most cases she can order up to $500 worth of books for a small S&H fee like that and then after, all S&H is FREE
    H E L P
    I did get this next letter you're talking about the Independence one – but they stated 6-8weekschange over which would take me past my Aug19th Birthday, the date the store was working for to bring me in
    H E L P
    Can some kindherted and monied person help me. I'm a woman on my countrie's disabilty. and I cant afford to even quit my contrac wih them for they want to charge me $99 to quit and then S&H fee to send me my items back.

  10. There's a lot not being told here, such as how much it costs for the transfer (obviously enough that a discount coupon is dangled out there), and what happens to the "royalty" carrot PA always claimed?
    If this is handled like other PA offerings, the information probably won't be in a new contract.
    Oh, wait. Is there a new contract?

  11. Wait, what? I don't even understand this offer. What happens to the minimum 7 softcovers the poor suckers order?

  12. I wonder how many authors will fall for this. Some who want to get from under the stigma of being a PA author will run to it like a drowning man after a rope. What a shame.

  13. Did someone say "cat?" 😉

    Seriously, you're right. It should be fairly obvious what someone faced with this offer should do.

  14. Fortunately, no one will know who's behind Independence Books.

    Unless some lets the cat out of the bag. That could happen.

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