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Torquere Press is Closing

15 December 2016

From Writer Beware:

Troubled publisher Torquere Press is closing. Owners Kristi Boulware and Joanna Talbot announced their decision yesterday in an email that will doubtless infuriate many authors, but probably won’t surprise them:

We have thought long and hard about where things are with Torquere and made the very hard decision that we need to begin the process of closing this chapter of our lives….We have done everything we could to turn things around but with the saturation in the industry, the financial hardships we are in, my health in constant decline along with the negativity we have had hurdled our way. We feel like we are currently fighting an uphill battle.

Trouble at Torquere (which had been in business since 2003 with no problems) surfaced in early 2016, a little more than a year after Boulware and Talbot took it over. Reports of royalty payment problems began to proliferate, even as Torquere participated in Twitter pitch contests to find new manuscripts. During the summer, Boulware was arrested on a hot check charge, allegedly after payment to one author bounced. In November, communication stopped completely, with neither Boulware nor Talbot answering authors’ emails or responding to Facebook messages. Ominously, both co-owners removed “Torquere” from their Twitter handles and bios.

Link to the rest at Writer Beware and thanks to A. for the tip.


12 Comments to “Torquere Press is Closing”

  1. Missing royalties, bounced checks, and a publisher that doesn’t know the difference between “hurdled” and “hurtled”.

    If publishers are trying to keep the copyright for the final edited version of a book, does that mean they can still publish it but keep all the money it makes?

    • Every excuse they can use, every penny they can steal.

    • I would ignore them. if they can’t pay royalties, they don’t have enough money to sue you.

    • If publishers are trying to keep the copyright for the final edited version of a book, does that mean they can still publish it but keep all the money it makes?

      Who knows what they will try to do, but other publishers have used similar language. Copyright experts agree they cannot publish.

      In order for the claim to stick the publisher’s contribution must be copyrightable on its own. A preface is. Edits to the main text are not.

      They might be trying to claim ownership of the print ready file (layout, typography, et cetera). That’s proper. They cannot place any restriction on the edited text. An ignorant publisher might try out of ignorance. An unscrupulous publisher might try under the theory that you can’t afford to challenge them. But the text, even the edited text, is yours and yours alone unless you explicitly entered into a joint-authorship agreement.

    • Actually, I think they meant “hurled.”

      Ah well, maybe they can find new jobs in NYC…

  2. Where did you get this email? I am an author on Torquere and I never received this. Please let me know your source. Thank you.

  3. Well, I’ve never heard of them, but I’m reminded of another publisher going under in a dramatic way.

    If you take over a company and it immediately begins to go off the rails, I think the mirror will show those at fault. Trying to put it off on people “hurdling” at them is a FAIL.

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