As some of you read on social media, there has been an issue with the publishing house that was to release my book this Valentine's Day. Apparently, Tate Publishing was going under - and during the time that they were going under and being sued by basically every major printing press in the U.S., they were also not paying royalties to authors, withholding employees pay, and continuing to take in as many new orders as they could (despite the fact that they haven't had a printing press working with them for 3 months now).
They are under investigation by the Attorney General's office as well as the FBI for supposedly shuffling funds to other LLCs they just opened so that they could potentially file for bankruptcy. Without warning, this week Tate Publishing closed their doors, shut down their phones, and the only remaining thing on their website is a contract termination form that authors can fill out, waiving all rights to a refund. Additionally, they are requiring authors to pay $50 to Tate if the author wants their own manuscripts back... they are literally charging people to reclaim their own intellectual property. (In case you didn't know it, that's kind of illegal.)
I found all of this out yesterday. So obviously yesterday sucked eggs. Plain and simple. And then today I had to reapply my big girl britches and start moving forward, figuring out how to proceed. Thankfully there have been people put in my path that know a significant amount more about this crazy publishing world than I do, and we're taking it one step at a time as we move forward, hopefully towards a soon-to-be released book!
BUT, for those of you who had already purchased The Children Who Raised Me while it was in it's early release stage, there is hope for you to get your money back! (Silver linings!) First, call your credit card or banking center that you used to make your purchase. Inform them of the situation and they will put a temporary credit on your card. This allows them an investigation phase of 2 billing cycles. During that time, Tate Publishing is able to either refund your money, produce a book for you (which they physically cannot do), or file for bankruptcy.
If they file for bankruptcy before you receive your credit, your bank or credit card holder will have to tell you what that means for your reimbursement. However, as long as you do this soon, hopefully they will miss their 2 billing cycle time frame and everyone will get their money back.
Secondly, if you would be so kind, the Attorney General's Office in Oklahoma is asking that all affected parties fill out a Consumer Complaint Form - their office has already received an incredibly high volume of complaints, and the more they get in, the better the likelihood that they will file a class-action lawsuit against Tate Publishing. I know this may mean little to you, but hear me out:
There are thousands of authors who have paid thousands (if not tens of thousands) of dollars to Tate Publishing - beautiful people wanting to find a good "Christian" publishing house that will make their dreams come true. People like you and me with stories to tell - the kind of stories that will inspire and make the world a better place. These lovely people have been lied to, cheated, and manipulated by the very company that promised them success and a platform for ministry. These people are hurting, broken, in shock, and now without the rights to their own materials or the money they've given over to these people.
I am only one of those people... there are so many more who have now lost access to not just one, but multiple books and all of the royalties promised to them. Filing a claim will help increase the chance that these hard-working folks may get a portion of their money refunded to them. For some, this is the only way they can afford to move on with their book being published (or re-published in many cases). Without this, many stories will go untold.
So, to all of you who have been faithful with me on this journey through your love, encouragement, prayers, or purchasing of my book - I cannot say thank you enough. And now I ask you just do one more thing by filing the claim below and giving all of the affected authors a new chance to tell their stories. Thank you. So much love to you all!