To Whom It May Concern - In the spring I made a deposit on your "Inspire Package" to publish my book. That contract did not last long because the content review tagged my book as legally risky for "libel or invasion of privacy." I was given only three options to mitigate that risk and move forward-- use a pen name, "remove all potentially libel claims and statements", "obtain notarized express written permission from all parties." Obviously, my book was too risky for you. I would never use a pen name (that defeats the point, and it doesn't protect me from litigation). Removing all the content that the CE tagged as "libelous" would wipe out the book. The requirement to "Obtain notarized express written permission from all parties" was unreasonable, at best - ridiculous. Obviously, Balboa Press does not deal with books written by whistle blowers. I ended the contract. Half of my initial deposit was refunded, because I had to pay for the review that rejected my book. I now consider my BP experience an ironic and expensive mistake. While it is your policy, and in your contract, to charge for every service performed, charging a customer $400 to reject his or her work is terrible customer service. It makes the company look like a scam. There are several complaints about Balboa Press online, many sound similar to my experience. Recently, an independent copyright lawyer reviewed my book for legal risk. Her assessment: "...when I review a manuscript I never quite know beforehand where the legal issues might arise,, and in something on cults I had more anticipated being concerned about defamation and privacy issues, but you seem to have handled most of those quite well ..." So, basically, I paid Balboa Press $400 for an inaccurate legal assessment. It left a very bad taste. Ethically, Balboa should refund the full amount of my deposit; but I know that's unlikely. Think about what kind of online reputation you want to have.
User's recommendation: Balboa Press/Authors Solutions is a scam.