Vantage Press – Is It A Scam?


Vantage Press is America’s oldest self-publishing corporation and was founded in 1949, so you would think that being in business that long would mean they would be the best in the business. Sadly…this is not the case.

The reviews I did of Dorrance Publishing and AuthorHouse are also in the same category as Vantage Press because they are what is termed as Vanity Publishers and will charge excessive fees plus they will take over the ownership of your book. The only entitlement you have is to the digital copy of your work.

The complaints against Vantage Press are what I can only describe as being…unreal, and I have compiled a list of some of the complaints which include:

  • The case where they charged a senior citizen $16,000 and the author only received $450 in return for a few sales.
  • 2,200 authors were awarded $3.5 million by a State Supreme Court in Manhattan for defrauding them.

The ‘Vantage Press’ that was apparently doesn’t exist nowadays due to the fact that it has a new owner, David Lamb, but they still operate the same way by taking over the ownership and charging what I can only describe as excessive fees.

Despite the above, the Better Business Bureau accredited Vantage Press in 2010 and gave them an A+ rating, and they only ever received 3 complaints which are now closed. Irrespective of this I would still be very careful as to who you use.

Every book that gets accepted by Vantage Press gets the following:

  • ISBN/Barcode Allocation (Registered with Vantage Press) - Once this is done you lose ownership.
  • LCCN (Library Cataloguing Number)
  • Professional Copy Edit
  • Copy Proofing
  • Custom Cover (Author can supply materials if they wish)
  • Typesetting/Interior Layout
  • Advance Information sheet to Sellers
  • Review copies sent to newspapers, magazines, and broadcast outlets in your local area and nationally, taking into account specialty and Internet media.
  • Sample copies sent to selected booksellers and libraries
  • When practical, a coordination of book signings
  • 500 Contacts for direct sell list
  • Press release
  • Inclusion in Vantage Press trade catalogue
  • Online distribution listing (including Books in Print)
  • Wholesale warehousing and fulfilment of inventory
  • Direct sales marketing from Vantage Press
  • Initial offset print run of 400-1000 books
  • Free print runs thereafter if required
  • Copyright registration
  • 100% Returns program offered to booksellers
  • Submission of legal copies to National Library
  • 50 to 100 Author copies supplied
  • 50% Discount on retail price for any copies bought by author
  • 40% Royalty on retail book price
  • Paperback or hardback editions
  • Option to use Vantage Press just as your printer
  • Note: Cancellation of contract allowed after two years (contract is active from the date the book production is completed)

This is a very comprehensive list, but for all that you will pay between $5,000 and $25,000 for the privilege.

From what I have read there hasn’t been many complaints about Vantage Press since it’s takeover by it’s new owner David Lamb, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that they are good self-publishing site to use. My main concern is the high costs and (again) that you do not own your book, but if this is something that you are not really bothered about then go ahead and use them.

Vantage Press – Is It a Scam?

It’s impossible to say because it depends on how you value their service, but if having complete ownership of your work is something that you are looking for…do not use them.

~ Neil
WFHW Team

* Please read our updated post on Vantage Press: Has Vantage Press ceased trading?

* Interested in writing and/or becoming an author?
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13 Comments on Vantage Press – Is It A Scam?

  1. claudio plazas // December 2, 2013 at 8:47 pm // Reply

    If vantage press inc. went out of business, my book is still on sale on amazon and Barnes and noble etc. who is having the money?

    I own the rights, I have the electronic file. why is my book still selling?

    I never receive any money and they robbed me of $19k.

  2. Juliann Lynch // January 19, 2013 at 5:34 am // Reply

    Hi I wrote a book in 1993 and I never got anybook signings and I never knew once I got the bar code I didn’t own my book anymore. I also heard it was still being sold. I need to know what is going on.

    • Hi Juliann,

      Thank you for your comment.
      Unfortunately Vantage Press has ceased trading and we have provided contact details here.

      All the best

      Neil
      WFHW

  3. Sandor Tomin // January 17, 2013 at 5:06 pm // Reply

    My case is similar to Helen’s: I gave them $13,475 in September and just now did I learn they’re out of business. When I called their “attorney” Andrea Momnie at Hendel & Collins, she said there were no funds and that it was unfortunate. I’m not even sure where to turn.

    • Hi Sandor Tomin,

      I am very sorry this has happened to you.
      That is a huge amount of money to lose.
      Any money they would have has to go to the Creditors first.

      All the best

      Neil
      WFHW

  4. Helen McCloskey // December 19, 2012 at 5:31 pm // Reply

    I signed a contract in June and gave them $11,500 in cash to publish a small book of poems. I have tried to r each them to ask about some editing issues and have been unable to contact them via phone or email. I did file with the BBB today. I believe they may have disappeared with my money, or they’re filing Chapter 11. That is only a theory. In any event if I don’t hear from them by tomorrow I will also be calling the New York District Attorney. – Helen in Florida

    • Hi Helen,

      Thank you for your comment.
      Unfortunately you will be unable to contact Vantage Press because they have ceased trading.
      However you can contact the Law Firm handling this.
      Please check out my update.

      All the best
      Neil
      WFHW

  5. I think they are a scam, I paid them over $10K and since signing the contract they are nonexistent. The phone doesnt work, they do not return emails. I contacted police in their town and they had other complaints, officer said their location looks non-operational. I filed complaint with BBB and DA in NY. I feel I have been scammed. Anyone who has had a bad experience with them please call the NY DA office and file complaint 212-335-8900. I also found several complaints today on another website about them.

    • Hi Marlene,

      Thank you for your comment and with providing further information on where to complain if other people have been having issues
      with Vantage Press.

      Regards

      Neil
      WFHW

  6. son of author // October 18, 2012 at 7:01 pm // Reply

    tracy, let me know what the out come is, My mom wrote a book and it been out over a year also. They claim she would have commercials and such, I do not see results. I am hoping they do not ripp my mom off. And your wife as well.

  7. My wife had a book published by vantage press called tragic miracles by s.m.rolfe its been out for over a year. We havent heard a word from them about how many books have sold or royalties. It has sold out numerous times at amazon and barnesandnoble.com

    • Hi Tracy,
      Have you been in contact with them to find out what is happening?
      Because you should be earning something from the royalties.

      Cheers
      Neil
      WFHW Team

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