First of all, how about the USA Men's 4x100 relay team?!? Was that not just the most awesomest race ever??? Woo hoo!
Ahem, anyway - this isn't what I'd planned on posting, but something happened and I find it causes me a bit of confusion. Maybe it shouldn't, but it does. So, I'll throw it out there and see what everyone else thinks. And please - don't be shy. If you agree, say so. If you think I'm being an idiot, tell me (but nicely, please.)
I was checking my MySpace page (I know, I can't help it) and I saw a friend request. Now who doesn't like getting those? Who doesn't think Somebody want me to be their MySpace friend. Yay!?
So, when I looked at it, it was from a vanity press, and their message to me was that they have a very talented group of writers and it seems appropriate that I should join them as well. Now, it's just a policy that, whenever I receive a friend request, I go to that person's page and check them out. Just curious, or maybe I'm thinking it's spam (which some of them are, and they get a very quick no.)
So, I go to their site, and they seem relatively straightforward about what they are - I see no claims that they are a "traditional" publisher, like say **coughcough PublishAmerica coughcough**. I looked up their "publishing" packages, and they list various prices, depending on what services an author wants. Their home page is a little confusing. They talk about a flat fee, and then about package fees. I'm assuming they are two separate fees, combined when you place your order.
Now, I've said I have no problem with vanity presses, as long as they are upfront about what they are **coughcough PublishAmerica coughcough**. But I really don't know that I want my name being associated with one. I don't care how upfront a vanity is about their business. I don't consider vanity published authors to be published authors. Not to demean them, or devalue their work, but since anyone with a manuscript and extra cash can have their books printed, it just isn't the same to me as someone who's gone through revisions, queries, rejections, and then acceptances. It took me a long time and a lot of hard work to get that first acceptance. Vanity published books may be just as good as commercially published books, but to me, they are not equal.
So, if I add this group to my MySpace, what does that say about me? Does it matter? Does it look like I am endorsing them, and if so, does that matter? I don't know. Maybe I'm a snob, maybe I'm an elitist, but I don't want my name out there, possible entwined with a vanity press that I've never heard of, and aside from the brief peek through their site, know nothing about. It just doesn't sit quite right with me. And, when I popped over to Preditors & Editors, I see they have a "Not Recommended" notation beside their company.
So, what is it? Am I right to be concerned, or am I worrying about nothing?