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Frequently Asked Questions

Who are we? 

Very simply, we’re industry veterans who love the novel as a medium for entertainment. We’ve taken a few small books (with zero fans) and sold thousands upon thousands of copies. We’ve also seen our fair share of unprofessionalism and downright theft in the publishing world – and we don’t believe in that way of doing business.

After asking ourselves “if we were doing it…” one too many times, we decided to leverage our decades of customer service values, publishing expertise, marketing know-how, author mentoring and client-partner relationship building into a small publishing venture.

We think we can do it better. And we’re here to prove it.

For more information about the Fable Press team, visit the About Us page.

Submission Process 

Q. What kinds of fiction is Fable Press currently seeking?

A. We seek all flavors of speculative fiction. This could be a thriller with a supernatural flair or a paranormal romance novel. A dark horror story or high fantasy. Utopian/dystopian. Alternate reality/history. Space Opera or steam punk – steam punk space opera? Why not! Speculative fiction covers a wide range of genre fiction and we love it all!

Currently, we're only considering Young Adult (YA) and Adult fiction. We aren't publishing Children or Youth fiction at this time.

All novel-length (60,000+ words) submissions are welcome, as well as any serialized novella proposals.

We do favor authors who have written or are currently working on a series of novels. Our marketing model favors a series of books and we’ve seen great success in that arena.

Q. And what won't be considered?

A. Fable press isn't interested in fan fiction, works not wholly your own nor anything completely derivative of a current fictional world/character.

Q. Do I need an agent to submit to Fable Press?

A. Not remotely. Fiction is a subjective form of entertainment, and we prefer to make judgment calls based upon our own opinions - not those of some third-party. Let's work directly together and skip the middleman/woman!

That said, if you already have representation, kindly inform us and we'll certainly still consider your work.

Q. How do I submit my work to be reviewed by Fable Press?

A. If you’re interested in Fable Press reviewing your work for possible publication, please understand that we’re only interested in completed, full-length novels which have gone through a few author revisions (and hopefully some peer/group review). Ensure your work is ready for another set of eyes and submit the following to submissions@fablepress.com:

  • A cover letter describing yourself and your work (with word count & contact information)
  • A short (1-page) synopsis of your work
  • Chapter 1
  • (All items in .doc, .docx or Pages format please)

Q. Any tips for my synopsis?

A. After you've prayed to the Google Gods for some basic ideas on how to craft a novel synopsis (if necessary), here are a few things we specifically look for:

- A strong sense of: "Who's story is this?"
- A clearly discernible narrative (ie: "Where is this story going?")
- Something to grab our attention

Final tip: relax & write. We don't just read the synopsis, so we'll let the combination of your letter, synopsis and your chapter make the first impression.

Q, What is the review process?

A. We will review your submission and either a) ask for more or b) send you a short note as to why we won’t be accepting your work. Know that publishing is a subjective process, and Fable Press isn’t rejecting on a personal level.

Time frames to respond vary greatly and are based on volume and current business needs. In no case, however, will we ignore anybody who follows our guidelines for submission. Our roots are in customer service, and ignoring potential business partners is just something we don’t do. You can expect to hear from us, one way or the other. (the only way you won't hear from us is in the case of Junk/Spam email filters)

Q. My book was previously published... Can I still publish with Fable Press?

A. If you own all the rights, you bet!

Many other publishers feel that novels have a "shelf life," like milk or yogurt. We just don't think that way, so we are certainly open to publishing previously available work, provided it passes our review process of course.

Q. Can I submit multiple works for review to Fable Press?

A. If you have several pieces which fit our guidelines, have at it!

Q. What about simultaneous submissions?

A. We prefer to be the only ones reviewing the work, but we also understand that life is short. If you are submitting elsewhere, kindly inform us in your cover letter.

Q. Is Fable Press interested in Novellas?

A. That depends. A serialized body of novellas with a strong commitment from the author to continue certainly interests us.

A singular novella? We would probably pass.

Author Fees & Costs 

 Q. Must I pay setup fees for my book to be published with Fable Press?

A. Absolutely not. If we want to publish your work, we will do it the right way. No fees from authors, no setup costs, no hidden agenda.

Some other small publishing houses try and collect these fees because they’re only interested in a quick money grab from desperate authors. Here at Fable Press, our goal is to be a partner with our authors. We invest in our authors and are genuinely interested in their success.

Q. What about editing fees, layout costs or cover artwork?

A. Again, no. While we won’t reimburse you for anything you’ve purchased before working with us, we also won’t rob your wallet for these sorts of costs. We’ll take care of editing, cover design and layout. If you, as the author, want to provide input into the process – we’re always interested in hearing ideas.

Bottom line: we’ll never ask you for money to publish your work. Never ever.

 Royalties 

 Q. What is the royalty structure?

A. Royalties are paid on every sale of your work. Note that Fable Press will often run promotions & discounts and no royalties are paid when Fable Press doesn’t collect a royalty (in the case of a free promotion, for example).

But in all other cases, the author receives (at a minumum) between 30% and 40% of the net sale. The higher percentages represent a longer contract and/or higher sustained sales for the period. Contract terms range from 5 to 10 years.

Q. Why "net sale" royalties? Why is it not based on list price?

A. List price would be great, if we had complete control over it. In today's world, with different regional markets and distributor promotions - we find it more consistent to account for royalties in this manner.

List price royalties are still somewhat common among print sales with many publishers, however we have seen many of them (including major publishers) move to this method of eBook sales.

Q. Is this a "net receipt" contract?

A. No. A million times, no.

This concept of "net receipt" seems to be a trend amongst new and some established publishing houses - and it puts the cost of publication, marketing & advertising back on the author! It is commonly cloaked with the promise of "no upfront costs" - which is true. But you may also never see any of that fat royalty promised you.

We don't believe in that business model for Fable Press, and our contract is NOT a "net receipt" model.

Q. How often are royalties paid?

A. Royalties are paid quarterly.

Q. Do I receive a royalty statement?

A. Absolutely! We endeavor to provide you with as much information as possible. This’ll include sales numbers from each market and promotional information. Of course, if all you desire is a check – that’s okay too! Not everybody likes to drink from the fire hose.

Q. What, exactly, is Fable Press doing with their share of the royalty?

A. A fair question. Here's the bare minimum of what we will do for you (the author):

- Professional edits & critiques of your work
- Professional format & layout for print & eBook
- Professionally made cover which can stand next to any cover produced by a major publisher
- Distribution of your work on the world's biggest stage
- Marketing, Advertising & Promotion
- Amazon.com author page
- Author mentorship (if you so desire)
- Fair treatment, at all stages, while we are in business together
- A true "partnership" between publisher & author
- (in some cases) Hardcover production and distribution
- (in some cases) Professional Book Trailer

Editions, Pricing & Author Copies 

 Q. In what format(s) will my book be available?

A. While eBooks rule the day, we will also make available a softcover edition of your book. We realize that bookstores are becoming extinct, but we also recognize that a part of the “magic” revolves around holding a physical book.

In some cases, we may also decide to produce a hardcover version of the book depending on demand.

Q. Can I order my book at a discount?

A. Absolutely! Just let us know how many and where to ship to, and we’ll get them to you at a greatly discounted price. Note that these copies won’t appear in a royalty statement, and won’t reflect on your sales. We order direct from the printer to keep the costs reasonable to you.

Q. Can I sell physical copies of my books, like at a book signing?

A. Yes. Our contract has a clause allowing for this.

Q. Does my book really need to be edited?

A. Yeah it does. No matter how sharp your eye may be, typos and style mistakes always creep their way into any manuscript. We have an amazing, professional editor on staff to vet your masterpiece – fear not!

Q. Can I set the price for my book?

A. Fable Press will set the print and eBook prices for your book. This is based upon many business factors and some very simple ones – like, how many pages did you pen?

Book Availability & Promotion 

 Q. Where will my book be available?

A. Our marketing strategy is very tightly linked with Amazon.com, so your work will certainly be available there worldwide (as well as all their distribution channels – including Barnes & Noble).

Other markets can be discussed as we move along together through the process.

Q. Will my books be in bookstores?

A. Bookstores are, unfortunately, on the endangered species list in the retail world. Placing a book on those shelves isn’t always a reality for small press. While your book will be available to book stores & libraries to stock on their shelves, the reality of getting there isn’t always in the cards.

Of course, any bookstore can one-off order your book for their shelves, and your friends and family can certainly make that request. It’s actually a pretty awesome moment for any author.

Q. Will Fable Press handle all marketing efforts for my book?

A. Yes and no.

Yes, we will market your book through many social media and advertising outlets – whatever makes sense based upon our strategy. And we have real incentive to do so!

But no, we don’t feel that this should be the extent of your book’s marketing. Much of the reality of book-selling these days falls onto the author’s shoulders. Blogging, social media, spreading the word – these are all skills you should be looking to master as an author in today’s world. You need to be your own best advertisement. Remember, people aren’t just buying a collection of words – they are buying you. Keep excitement high, stay connected with your readers and get the word out however you can.

All that said – you’re not alone! We are here to co-market with you and help you reach your audience. In tandem, we believe we can drive sales together and successfully reach thousands (millions?) of readers worldwide.

Rights & Copyrights 

 Q. I’ve published through Fable Press… Who owns my book?

A. You do! Your contract with Fable Press allows us to sell it for you. Since this is an exclusive right, neither you nor anybody else may sell your book without permission from Fable Press.

You give us rights to sell, promote & distribute your book for a length of time – but you own the work.

Q. Can I still publish my book elsewhere?

A. Under the contract, no. We require exclusive world-wide rights to distribute and sell your work for the duration of the contract.

If, after a period of time, you wish to end the contract, Fable Press would work with you to find a solution with maximum benefit to you.

Q. Do I need to copyright my book?

A. That’s up to you. The moment you transcribed your book, you asserted your copyright over that body of work. Nobody can take that away from you.

However, if you wish to have more authority to press an infringement claim, you could register your work with the US Copyright Office (for a fee). That responsibility/decision falls squarely on the author’s shoulders and we won’t pressure you in one direction or the other.