I’ve been submitting fiction to the Internet since the turn of the century and had it presented in many different forms on many different sites. A lot of it has been published with my express permission, but more often it’s been reposted on sites I’ve never heard of before. The truth is that I don’t mind about that. My ambition is more to be read than to retain copyright.
I’ve been approached by many different people over this time who claim to represent various different websites and organisations. For most such people, I’m sure, mine is just yet another name amongst the list of contributors to ASSTR, Literotica, Stories OnLine and Ruthie’s Club.
The most recent such contact has been Fun Sex Stories, which is a website claiming to be the Erotic wing of TT Publishing or Think and Thank Publishing. On their website, http://funsexstories.com, we are referred to the publisher’s website, 9tt.org, which is actually a rather less more informative place than their website.
What do we know about TT Publishing?
Well, there’s the impression given by their two websites which is of an established publisher that has recently decided to venture into publishing erotic fiction on the web and has six agents dedicated to the publication of erotic fiction. They provide a “sample contract” and make a great deal about the services they provide.
However, I have certain reservations about TT Publishing and their offshoot Fun Sex Stories.
The first and most obvious is that if TT Publishing is such a great publisher, there should be a great deal to find about them on the internet. A search for “Fourth Estate Publishing” (the publishers of Hilary Mantel) results in 4,430,000 hits, whereas for “TT Publishing” there are very much fewer and many of those are for the Transport Topics Publishing Group and Tt Games Publishing Ltd.
A visit to Amazon where you’d expect the publications from TT Publishing to be found in huge numbers reveals only 88 publications of which the only ones that aren’t erotic fiction are about a Gluten-Free diet and where the oldest publication is dated February 2012.
So, we can deduce that TT Publishing doesn’t have a very long history or has published very many books, but just how good are they? After all, new companies are launched all the time and they have to promote themselves in some way or another.
I’m not an investigative journalist and I have no wish to get involved in any tit-for-tat correspondence, so I’ll limit myself to a few observations:
- The “sample contract” shown on their website is very restrictive and doesn’t offer very much given that places like Lulu and Smashwords enable you to self-publish at no cost to yourself whatsoever.
- Six agents are rather a lot for a small publishing company. That’s many more than most rather bigger publishing agencies. And why can’t we see the real pictures of the agents?
- Why are these agents so woefully illiterate? There are more spelling and grammatical errors in their e-mails to me than I’d expect in correspondence with anyone, let alone “literary agents”.
- The evidence from the previews provided with the published books on Amazon is that the stories have not been proof-read, edited or in any way vetted for content. This is a very strange policy for a legitimate publishing company.
My hypothesis (and one which can never be proven one way or the other) is that TT Publishing is a one-man activity by someone whose name may or may not be Bill Jacobs which aims to make money from authors of erotica of almost any quality on ASSTR and elsewhere by offering to do for them what they can easily do for themselves and then pocket 80% or more of whatever sales are made.
But I may be totally wrong, of course.