Author Topic: Anybody hear about or work with Curiosity Quills (Small press?)  (Read 4799 times)  

Offline MarilynVix

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I was wondering if anyone on the board has worked with this press or had any dealings with them. Had an editor from there ask to send in a query and first 10 pages of my Time Travel Romance. Wondering if it's more along the vanity press route or along the lines of small press. I've been checking out the website and it doesn't look like they sell packages, but like they have people to help authors Hmm. Hard to tell. Just wondering if anyone on the board knows anything about them. Would appreciate it.  :D

Offline MrWayneMrBruceWayne'sClone

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Re: Anybody hear about or work with Curiosity Quills (Small press?)
« Reply #1 on: June 26, 2015, 05:43:03 PM »
I've recently read a book from them (time travel), Unhappenings by Edward Auby. Loved it. Uh, yeah, that's the only thing I know from them, sorry.


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Offline dianapersaud

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Re: Anybody hear about or work with Curiosity Quills (Small press?)
« Reply #2 on: June 26, 2015, 05:46:54 PM »
I just picked two random books they recently published. One had rankings in the 800K, the other was over 1 million.

What can this press do for you?

Not marketing.

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Offline dianapersaud

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Re: Anybody hear about or work with Curiosity Quills (Small press?)
« Reply #3 on: June 26, 2015, 05:51:42 PM »
They claim to be a "publisher" but don't stipulate any terms of the contract.

They say they want to be "transparent" but...they don't stipulate the terms of the contract.

I gather there is some advance...since you have to pay it back should you terminate the contract.

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Offline KhaosFoxe

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Re: Anybody hear about or work with Curiosity Quills (Small press?)
« Reply #4 on: June 26, 2015, 06:06:35 PM »
I know a couple of authors who are or were with them. Their editing isn't very highly rated, both authors had to go back over it and fix quite a few errors themselves. One cancelled their contract due to major editing problems. They are a small press, but I don't know of any advantages of going with them over self-publishing.

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Offline AllyWho

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Re: Anybody hear about or work with Curiosity Quills (Small press?)
« Reply #5 on: June 26, 2015, 06:47:04 PM »
There's a big thread about them on AbsoluteWrite which also mentions low sales and issues with editing.
http://absolutewrite.com/forums/showthread.php?240830-Curiosity-Quills-Press

Offline MarilynVix

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Re: Anybody hear about or work with Curiosity Quills (Small press?)
« Reply #6 on: June 26, 2015, 11:05:49 PM »
There's a big thread about them on AbsoluteWrite which also mentions low sales and issues with editing.
http://absolutewrite.com/forums/showthread.php?240830-Curiosity-Quills-Press

Thanks. The above thread is answering questions. It sounds like they've got a whole new concept of how to run a press by publishing serials which are big right now. It doesn't look like it would be a problem to submit and see what they have to say. It seems that a lot of people are wary of new things to try. When I first started all this, I was into having a small self-publish press work with me, and they got bought out. They were called Trafford. Until Authors Solution took over, it was a pretty well working set up. They were a small press out of Canada.

Still wondering if anyone on this board have worked with them. Most of the people supporting on the other thread were newly joined members that were authors with Curiosity Quills Press. So, still trying to muddle through the real facts. Love to hear more input on this press.

Offline AllyWho

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Re: Anybody hear about or work with Curiosity Quills (Small press?)
« Reply #7 on: June 27, 2015, 02:41:37 AM »
I spent time querying agents & small presses before deciding to self publish. Personally I was turned off most small pubs as they didn't offer anything I couldn't do myself, still expected me to do all the marketing and they would take half my royalty thanks. I'd rather tackle this path on my own, I've heard too many small press horror stories.
« Last Edit: February 04, 2016, 01:50:59 PM by AliceWE »

Offline Karen Kincy

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Re: Anybody hear about or work with Curiosity Quills (Small press?)
« Reply #8 on: February 04, 2016, 10:37:08 AM »
Reviving this zombie thread just to say I have experience with Curiosity Quills, and no, they do not pay advances. They do, however, have an escape clause in their contracts that requires authors to "defray production costs." It does not specify an upfront cost. This means they can quote any amount after the fact, leaving the author to shoulder all the financial risk of publication. Red flag.

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« Last Edit: February 04, 2016, 10:40:30 AM by KarenLK »

Offline Doglover

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Re: Anybody hear about or work with Curiosity Quills (Small press?)
« Reply #9 on: February 04, 2016, 10:48:51 AM »
I am constantly amazed at why anyone would sign up with any of these outfits who only do what you can do yourself, not even that much sometimes. Even if you pay for everything from covers, editing, proofreader etc, you are still in control and ultimately keep all your royalties. There are too many of these jokers jumping on the self publishing bandwagon, some even trying to tell newcomers that they will need thousands to self publish and that they can do it cheaper.  :-X


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Offline Rick Gualtieri

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Re: Anybody hear about or work with Curiosity Quills (Small press?)
« Reply #10 on: February 04, 2016, 11:55:13 AM »
I'm working with them on an anthology collection that I have a story in (out for preorder now).  There's been some delays that have happened as part of production, but overall it's been a fairly painless experience. 


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Offline Karen Kincy

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Re: Anybody hear about or work with Curiosity Quills (Small press?)
« Reply #11 on: February 04, 2016, 12:07:42 PM »
I'm working with them on an anthology collection that I have a story in (out for preorder now).  There's been some delays that have happened as part of production, but overall it's been a fairly painless experience. 

There's a chance you will have a positive experience with this small press, though I would advise caution. A more favorable contract will have a termination clause that takes minimum royalties/income into account. I realized my mistake too late.

Offline C. Rysalis

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Re: Anybody hear about or work with Curiosity Quills (Small press?)
« Reply #12 on: February 04, 2016, 01:02:37 PM »
I was curious enough to read most of that thread on Absolutewrite. My impression was that in 2015, people reported mostly pleasant experiences with CQ and that many of the starting issues had been worked out. Editing could be hit or miss depending on who your assigned editor will be, though. It was also stated that authors with agents get more attention from CQ than those without.

They do sell some books. I was surprised to learn they're the publisher behind 'Please don't tell my parents I'm a supervillain', a series that did very well in the Kindle store. http://www.amazon.com/Please-Dont-Tell-Parents-Supervillain-ebook/dp/B00IH0KG1S

Still, I'd rather self publish. It was said that CQ wants ALL rights, even for translations.
« Last Edit: February 04, 2016, 01:05:20 PM by C. Rysalis »

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Offline Karen Kincy

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Re: Anybody hear about or work with Curiosity Quills (Small press?)
« Reply #13 on: February 08, 2016, 10:56:33 AM »
Still, I'd rather self publish. It was said that CQ wants ALL rights, even for translations.

They do. And those bestselling authors are likely successful in spite of CQ, not because of them. My sales tanked after I signed over the rights to several of my indie titles.

Offline Wansit

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Re: Anybody hear about or work with Curiosity Quills (Small press?)
« Reply #14 on: February 08, 2016, 10:59:40 AM »
That sucks KarenLK, thanks for the honesty.

Also I just wanted to answer the OP's question by saying no, they aren't a vanity press. They're a legit small press but I can't say that their titles sell bonkers either. They are innovative in some aspects - their bundles are really nicely put together.

Offline Karen Kincy

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Re: Anybody hear about or work with Curiosity Quills (Small press?)
« Reply #15 on: February 08, 2016, 11:03:56 AM »
That sucks KarenLK, thanks for the honesty.

Also I just wanted to answer the OP's question by saying no, they aren't a vanity press. They're a legit small press but I can't say that their titles sell bonkers either. They are innovative in some aspects - their bundles are really nicely put together.

I regret signing the contracts with CQ. On first glance, they look like a reputable small press, but the results have been dismal. After doing my taxes for 2015, I'm really appalled by how badly the books performed under their control.

And now that I've learned the hard way, I would never again sign a contract with a termination fee of any kind. More info about kill fees: http://accrispin.blogspot.com/2009/08/victoria-strauss-kill-fees-and-why.html

Offline Wansit

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Re: Anybody hear about or work with Curiosity Quills (Small press?)
« Reply #16 on: February 08, 2016, 11:06:58 AM »
Noted on the termination fee.

Offline omegaman

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Re: Anybody hear about or work with Curiosity Quills (Small press?)
« Reply #17 on: December 05, 2016, 09:42:31 PM »
Do not submit to them under any circumstances. Here's why:

1) Incompetent editors and proofreaders. The final copy of my book had over fifty errors in it. Even more disturbing, many of those errors were not in the original manuscript.
2) No Marketing. The only people they sent review copies to were small-time mommy bloggers. They did not contact any bookstores about doing a signing or promotion before the book was released - you read that correctly, they literally contacted no one about publicity events before the launch of the book. Curiosity Quills said they did, but when I visited the stores in person, all of of them said they were never contacted by the company. So they lied about it, too.
3) Termination clause. Don't like CQ's stunning incompetence and lack of professionalism? Too bad. If you want out of the contract, they'll hit you with a fee. It may be a moot point since they are almost guaranteed to be in breach of contract themselves, but unless you have an attorney handy expect for it to be a huge headache.
4) Inability to meet deadlines. CQ was late with every single deadline, including the cover design. Bookstores and reviewers will not even consider handling a book that doesn't have a finished cover.
5) No attempts to keep the book in stock. They do print on demand, which is like kryptonite to bookstore owners. CQ is so cheap that they will not keep ten or twenty copies of your book in stock to have ready for potential buyers. Very few stores will even consider a print on demand book, as it guarantees shipping delays and implies a severe lack of confidence in the product on the part of the publisher.
6) Lack of professionalism. CQ will not answer your emails. If you ask them a direct question like, "Have you contacted so-and-so?", they will completely ignore the question or give a vague, evasive answer. They have a lot to hide, and it shows. In the dozens of emails I sent them, I'd estimate only 30-40 percent ever got a reply.
7) Again, no marketing. I can't stress this enough. I personally contacted bookstores and trade magazines and managed to set up reviews, interviews, and events with a success rate around 60%. The marketing department of CQ couldn't get a single one. Nada. Zero. A clueless, first-time author/amateur completely outperformed the entire marketing department.
8) Lack of accountability and a culture of failure. CQ will rarely take responsibility for their mistakes. What's worse, there appears to be absolutely no consequences for employees who make huge, damaging mistakes. CQ tolerates failure and incompetence at at every level of their organization, and even promotes the worst offenders to higher positions in the company.

Stay away, guys. Stay far, far away.

Offline she-la-ti-da

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Re: Anybody hear about or work with Curiosity Quills (Small press?)
« Reply #18 on: December 06, 2016, 07:25:09 AM »
Omegaman, that sucks. Sorry you had such a bad experience, but this sort of thing is why I don't entertain any notion of dealing with small presses (or even big ones).

Quote
It seems that a lot of people are wary of new things to try.

Marilyn, I don't think it's so much people are wary of trying new things as it is the very real and likely fact that these new things aren't going to be favorable.

I always ask myself a few questions when I see a new service, or a press, or anything like that:

#1  What do they say they will/can do.

#2  How much do they want (money, rights, whatever).

#3  What are they promising that I can't do myself easier, quicker, cheaper, better?

Almost always, the answers are pie in the sky, too much, and nothing.

I think it's great that you look to improve your business, but there's a reason people run from these things. Always check AbsoluteWrite on things like this. It's the best thing about that site (and they don't like self-publishing, in case anyone is wondering). Another place to check is Writer Beware.
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