Allan Mayer’s Weblog

Latest News (11)

Posted on: February 4, 2009

YouWriteOn have been coming in for some criticism recently about their lack of response to e-mails, amongst other things*.   People who have written to Legend Press seem to be having a bit more luck, so on Monday I sent the following e-mail to 


Just a quick enquiry re my book ‘Tasting the Wind’ by Allan Mayer. It is appearing on Amazon with someone else’s cover. I have heard that this gets sorted eventually, but the length is also wrong, so I am not sure if the ISBN is mine or not- can you shed any light? I could do with knowing, because I am soon to have a press release and need to know that people can buy my book through the link to Amazon, and not end up with someone else’s,

This morning I received the following reply:

 Hi Allan,

Thanks for your email. I have sent your query through to Edward at YWO, who deals with covers, who will look into it asap to clarify correct cover being displayed.
Best wishes,
I am inclined to think, however, that despite so many other things being blamed on Ted Smith, this may be more to do with Amazon’s processes. Other authors who did not publish through YWO have written to me to say that their books appeared at first with the wrong information attached.
Hopefully this will soon be remedied- it’s starting to get a little embarrassing when people who were told that the book would be available before Christmas are asking where it is.
*A masterful understatement, I know. For those ‘other things’ see the post for 3rd Feb on


Just a quickie to say that after posting this I e-mailed legend back and asked them when I would get payment details for my order of last week and, lo and behold, they arrived soon after.

6 Responses to "Latest News (11)"

Hi Allan;

Good to know that your book order payment notice arrived. I trust the books will be in your mailbox soon enough.

By the way, for you and other YWO Authors, here’s a useful telephone no., I got through the grapevine. It’s Ingram’s (our books’ distributer) automated help no. If you follow the options and enter your book’s ISBN, the female voice will give you its sales etc. figures.

The no. is: 1-615-213-6803

It’s in the US and would be an overseas (trunk) call from the UK. But if you have one of those Internet Phones, it might convert it into a local call.


PS: Why don’t you write a short story on your adventures and “Escape from SL” ?

I am really glad that your blog exists, Allan. There is info that isn’t available anywhere else. There are no forums any more on ywo. There are many problems facing those who accepted the offer to to publish. I don’t want to carry on in detail about my own hitches – suffice it to say that I have suffered like others from the systemic problems which are: no adequate communication; too many agents involved (Ted and ywo: Tom and Legend and the printers and the poor bloody writer) . I would like to feel that there is somebody with real involvement in the individual projects but there isn’t.

Thanks very much for your kind words, Marilyn. I am still of the opinion- although there are some who would call it naive- that Ted has embarked on a very well intentioned project, but hadn’t anticipated the number of difficulties that would arise.
This doesn’t take away the fact that there have been real frustrations all the way along the line. Mine at present is that the books I ordered from Legend over a month ago haven’t arrived. I wanted them to send out as review copies, so that part of my marketing campaign hasn’t been possible as yet. As the postage will gobble up my royalties I will be ordering any future cop[ies from Amazon or the Book Depository, where I can get free delivery.
How is your marketing going? I have included a free PDF download on my website of tools to help a marketing campaign, if this is of any use.
By the way- did you get the email from Ted about the new style critique service?

Good luck with The Legacy of Alice Waters,


Hi Allan, I was planning the marketing and the sending of review copies when I managed to get a copy of my book from Amazon. Shock Horror – there were blank half pages. At the moment I am on hold. When I am ready to go, I shall take advantage of all the help on your site, with heartfelt gratitude.

I have had to pay for a revision although I had cancelled and replaced the original copy which I hope will now be printed. The big draw back with ywo is the lack of careful feedback when you raise an issue. If that is not possible – why not a lulu system where checking the text is easy and free and a copy can be sent to the author for a final check.

I have not had any e-mails about the new style critique service. Is that about the actual site or is it regarding the books that are to be published?

Waiting with anticipation
Yours Marilyn

Hi Marilyn-
sorry to take so long getting back to you. I did ask Ted if he planned a Lulu-style service where corrections could be made by the author. He said that if any alterations had to be made there was a cost of £39.99 (that magic number again.)

This is the email from YWO- I assumed that we’d all got one.

Dear Allan

Thank you for your mail. By now you should have received details of how to order.

We hope the following may be of interest for you too. Feedback always welcome, as a review critique site we welcome it in the same way our members are open to contructive criticism about their writing.

We’ve now added a function on YouWriteOn for authors to add a link to their sample chapters or short story upload, so that readers who like your writing can click to buy your completed book.

YouWriteOn’s review exchange system actively encourages readers for your book. Each review you complete of another member’s chapter or short story upload will lead to a review back for your own sample chapters or short story from a reader. Once a reader has read your excerpt they can they can click to buy your completed book if they choose.

We hope this will assist with feedback to develop your writing further, and sales for your book. For those who haven’t participated in the review exchange process on YouWriteOn before, once you join YouWriteOn the site takes you through the simple steps to upload your sample excerpt and exchange reviews.

Actual sales may help some writers to potentially interest an agent or publisher. For example, we published Bufflehead Sisters by Patricia J. DeLois in 2007, and as a result of sales she achieved a two book deal with Penguin.

best wishes


Dear Allan,

Thanks for the copy of the email, Allan.

Well I paid the extra to have the new version only to have what I believe was an automatic response which said that my book was now ready and being marketed. It can’t possibly be the case for the corrected one. I sent another email to Tom asking for information. It wasn’t even a case of corrections being made in my case – I cancelled the version they printed and uploaded the correct one. The error was theirs because they don’t deal with the issues.

I am feelig pretty cheesed off.


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