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Rehab for (recovering) academics.
Edwin Mellen Press 
29th-May-2007 07:47 pm
Any thoughts about the reputation (positive or negative) of Edwin Mellen Press? I'm not (yet) in a tenure-track job, but looking to publish a book. Edwin Mellen seems appealing in some ways, but it gives me a weird vibe, too.

Thoughts? Experiences?

30th-May-2007 01:54 am (UTC)
In what ways are they appealing?

But more to the point, is this a press that published good work in your field? Is it the most appropriate publisher for your work, reaching the audience you want to read it? If the answer to either of these questions is no, then why are you seeking to publish there?
30th-May-2007 02:05 am (UTC)
My gut advice? Run. Run far away. Do not publish with them. Seriously, in my field and several other related fields, this press is seen as one step up from vanity press.

Sadly, I have seen some people I know send good qualities manuscripts to that press and get little credit for tenure or promotion because of the press's reputation. A lot of this blew up in the 1990s and things may be different now, but academic memories are very long, indeed.

Instead, ask your colleagues or people in related fields what presses they recommend. See what books you admire come out from particular presses. Ask the people manning the press tables at the relevant academic conferences what they're looking for in manuscripts.

Good luck!
30th-May-2007 02:35 am (UTC)
in my experience, this is how publishing conversations go:

you: I have a book out.
senior scholar: oh? what press?

is this the answer you want to give?
30th-May-2007 08:32 am (UTC)
They sent me a contract without having seen any of my writing, but wanted me to edit, produce camera ready copy and seemingly would have no editorial input, plus would charge me per page. I figured I could self-publish for a whole lot less if I wanted to go down that route, and I would actually market it.

I know some people have had good experiences with them, but it looked like vanity press for academics to me.
30th-May-2007 12:24 pm (UTC)
The internet is your friend: web searches for edwin mellen press quality and edwin mellen press vanity bring up countless interesting hits.

There's even a review by Phillip Rushton condemning edwin mellen press. And coming from Rushton, a pseudo-scientist racist that should illustrate something.

You'd almost be better off self-publishing your book on old Shredded Wheat boxes.
30th-May-2007 03:09 pm (UTC)
Aha. Thanks for all the replies -- they confirm my "weird vibes." The academic vanity press does not appeal; I will look elsewhere.
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