WritersWeekly Warnings Report

Date Filed: 03/06/02
Company: Press-Tige Publishing, presstigebooks.com , Press-Tige Books, Press-Tige Press, Kelly O'Donnell Literary Agency, Inc., O'Donnell Literary Services, Inc., Writers Information US Agency, Kelly O'Donnell, Martha M. Ivery, Martha Ivery, Kelly (or Martha) Reidda, Creek Lane Literary Agency (Sheryl Montanye), Joseph Wilson Associates, New Millennium Publishing (Craig Roussan and Denise Lasseter)

If you have had dealings with this firm or with Martha M. Ivery, we urge you to contact Charley Scholl immediately via email at: cscholl@wctc.net


UPDATE:

On November 29, 2006, Martha Ivery was sentenced to 65 months in prison + 3 years probation, and was ordered to pay $728,248.10 in restitution (which we seriously doubt she has...or ever will have). More about her criminal proceedings can be found HERE.

UPDATE - 09/25/02:

Martha Ivery recently appeared in court. To read what happened, look for "Summary" on this page:
http://www.sfwa.org/Beware/general.html

UPDATE - 07/03/02:

It looks like Martha Ivery has FINALLY filed for bankruptcy (after lying about doing so for many months). If you have a claim about her, better register yourself pronto. SFWA.org has been kind enough to post all the info. you need here: http://www.sfwa.org/beware/general.html

We're also happy to report that the Press-tige Publishing and New Millennium Publishing websites are gone. Our thanks go out to the many writers who were not afraid to speak up when they were wronged. They are the ones who have successfully prevented Martha Ivery from taking more victims!

UPDATE - 05/01/02:

If this Kelly O'Donnell is the same one who misrepresented herself several years ago to me, she supposedly had a literary agency at Round Top, NY. After only one query letter she was telling me how great my book was (send me $2500) and that she wanted to see the entire manuscript (send me another $1000 for copying) and had several publishers in mind (send me $500 for postage). It did need some serious editing (send me $2000) but that could be taken care of in-house.

The publishing house she had in mind was the one in Utah that recently went bankrupt due to high legal bills. The supposed contract offered to publish my book for a sum of $3990. Turned out it was a subsidy publisher in deep trouble with the state Attorney General plus 49 other states. When I requested the return of my manuscript, Ms. O'Donnell wanted $100 for postage and handling. No, I did not send Ms. O'Donnell $2500 or $1000 or $500 or $2000 nor did I send $3990.

It was a most disappointing experience but one that did not cost me anything but the original postage. Ms. O'Donnell did advertise in Writer's Digest for a while, until I informed the publisher about her record. She's not advertising any longer.

John Shriver

UPDATE - 03/27/02:

We plugged her name into Google and found numerous complaints.

WRITERSWEEKLY READER C.E. PETIT, ESQ., WROTE:

I have reviewed the relevant court filings and records. I can categorically state that there is no record of a bankruptcy filing between 01 January 1972 and 15 March 2002 for Martha Ivery (under any known variation or pseudonym), the O'Donnell Literary Agency (under the legally acceptable variations), Writers Information USAgency (under the legally acceptable variations), Press-TIGE (under any searchable variation, including as a dba), or New Millennium Publishing. The database only goes back 30 years, so that's as far back as I could search.

UPDATE:

Barabara Sala received her slides. Package was postmarked March 5th. So, emails sent to Barbara Sala prior to that regarding the slides having been shipped were LIES. Now Barbara wants her money back!

WARNING FROM CHARLEY SCHOLL

I entered into a publication contract with Press-Tige in August, 1999. Contract stated that my book, Dustin's Debut, was to be published in 6-9 months, with a 3 month clause for unforeseen circumstances. I was sent one copy of an unsigned, undated, contract. It was to be signed, dated, and returned within a specified time period with a cashier's check for $3950.00, the author's share of publication costs. I fulfilled my end of the contract, however, it took several e-mails from me from August through October before I actually received a copy of the completely signed and dated by both parties contract.

I finally received that after sending an e-mail telling Press-Tige that I had, in fact, made a copy of the signed contract before sending it. Believe it or not, Press-Tige sent me the original contract and asked me to make a copy of it and send it back, she claimed her copy machine was down. Press-Tige asked for an initial disk copy, cover blurb, author photo, and other promo stuff in October, which I promptly sent. Nothing happened after that. In April of 2000, I was surfing an author's message board and left a message telling other authors not to enter into any contractual arrangements with Press-Tige. I can't remember the exact wording, it was at the Author's and Publisher's Forum, which I have been unable to find since.

At that time, April 2000, it had been 8 months and I was beginning to smell a rat. Several authors have e-mailed me after finding my message. I have since learned that there are a whole lot of authors out there, just like me, sitting in the same situation. Basically, if the author doesn't complain, the author doesn't receive anything from this publisher. If you complain, you'll receive a congratulatory letter and your 50 author copies of your book. It will also be listed at online bookstores with no marketing of any kind provided. So, basically, no one will ever find it. The author will probably pay $80.00 per book to get that book published, like I did. My contract specifically stated a 30 city tour, my own personal publicist, etc., all to be paid for by the publisher. I received 50 author copies on July 3, 2001. I have received nothing further from this publisher, but a pack of lies when I file complaints with the likes of the Better Business Bureau.

Check out the website Preditors and Editors for more info on this publisher. Press-tige calls the authors who run this website, terrorists. She actually stated that in a return letter that was sent to me from the NY Better Business Bureau. You can find my book listed at Amazon.com, along with my self-published book, Girls! Girls! Girls! I self-published that book after being taken for a ride by Northwest Publishing Company, Inc., of Salt Lake City, UT. You can read about that company at Preditors and Editors, also. On the bright side, I have been able to get some pretty favorable book reviews on both books, and am currently still sending them out for review. Those 50 copies have got to be good for something! I am currently working on a third young-adult novel, and hope to place that with a reputable agent when it's finished.

UPDATE - 03/20/02:

In this ongoing saga, we are still trying to obtain proof that Martha Ivery did, in fact, return Barbara Sala's slides. Barbara's slides have NOT arrived. Last week, we ran a positive letter here allegedly sent by another one of Martha Ivery's clients. However, on further investigation, we discovered that the letter had been sent directly to us from Martha Ivery's own computer (the IP address was the same as the ones from her emails to us). We, therefore, removed the letter. Here is her response to our email about this. No, we did not edit her letters.

WARNING - EXTREME LANGUAGE AND RACISTS REMARKS FOLLOW

PUBLISHER (MARTHA IVERY) RESPONDS (3/14/02):

For your information, Mother Fucker, Jack Powell was staying at my home as he visited Howard Stern in NYC last week.

Asshole. You're not to smart when it comes to anything, are you? especially people in general. Why don't you go back to the country you came from? No one in this country likes Japs and that is what you are, a stinkin, fucking Jap.

Ms. Hoy. what kind of a name is that? if I had a name like yours, I'd shave my ass and walk backwards.

WRITERSWEEKLY RESPONDS:

After I thanked her for her note for publication, she sent this:

PUBLISHER RESPONDS:

anytime asshole. when I speak to a terrorist, I'll speak anyway I dam well please. Jap, Motherfucker.

WRITERSWEEKLY AGAIN:

We also received the following note:

Your Writer's Weekly publishes unsubstantiated lies. but I suppose that is what communists do. Since the USA was hit with terrorists last September, why don't you get your asses back to your communist country where you belong?

I am going to slander your company name, your name, all over God's creation and spread as many lies about YOU, than you have about Me. We'll see who goes down in history this time.

We'll see who just goes down.

03/15/02 12:12:59
64.12.101.177

MORE RACIST EMAIL FROM MS. IVERY:

Ms. Hoy, or whatever the hell you call yourself. I hae Japs, let it be known to the world. Your grandfather probably was the one that bombed the American sailors as they were on their ships. That's why I can't stand you. You come to this country and think you can get everything for free, you are a terrorist. Scumbag. Put that in your mouth and suck on it. Asshole

FINAL WRITERSWEEKLY COMMENT: Due to Ms. Ivery's extreme racism and her unethical behavior, we must advise all writers and anyone at all to avoid this woman and her firm at all costs. For the record, I'm offended by her racist comments as I'm sure are many of you.

UPDATE - 03/13/02:

If you have had dealings with this firm or with Martha M. Ivery, we urge you to contact Charley Scholl immediately via email at: cscholl@wctc.net


Summary:

First, see: http://www.sfwa.org/beware/general.html

Barbara Sala alleges Press-tige Publishing owes her an immediate refund. She also alleges the firm has not returned her slides. In addition, the firm claims to have filed for bankruptcy, but continues to solicit writers on their website.

From Barbara's Complaint: "Any idea how I can get back the slides of the illustrations? She says yes, yes, yes I will send it to you, but she doesn't. Is there a way to force her to do it?? It's a small item, but these are my illustrations and I don't want anybody else to get them. Thanks for any suggestion you have."

Response WritersWeekly received to its inquires into the matter:

Dear Ms. Hoy,

I just read Ms. Sala's letter to you. Who is going to force whom? Why don't you or Ms. Sala come to my office and try forcing me to do something? I like that threat, force. It is an adjective descripting an action, however where is the noun? The person behind the noun that is.

Martha

PRESS-TIGE RESPONDS AGAIN:

Dear Ms. Hoy,

Thank you for your letter regarding the author, Barbara Sala. Ms. Sala was sent a release form stating that she released Press-TIGE Publishing Incorporated from any claims, suits, etc, and Press-TIGE in return released Ms. Sala from her publishing contract with Press-TIGE. In the publishing contract, it stated that Ms. Sala would receive a refund, minus any of the publisher's promoting and marketing expenses. Ms. Sala only invested I believe the sum of $1600, and she was ( under agreement) supposed to send in the balance of 1800, I am not quite sure as I am not in my office at this time, however, Press-TIGE Publishing Inc, since the time the author released Press-TIGE from publishing her work, has since hired an attorney to deal directly with the bankruptcy courts. If you would like his name and number for verification, please let me know, I will supply it to you.

Press-TIGE has sent Ms. Sala back her slides when we sent her the release form. I do not have them in my office, I have no use for them, since I am not publishing any more books. As far as I am concerned, Press-TIGE is out of business. If there is anything you can think of in which I can help Ms. Sala locate her slides, I will be happy to help her. Please advise and thank you.

Sincerely,
Martha Ivery

WRITERSWEEKLY COMMENT: Ms. Sala still awaits her slides. They should have been sent to her long ago when she first requested them.


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