Amazon have rejected my book for publishing. Anyone else had this?

12 replies
Yesterday I woke up to an Amazon Alert email which started as follows:

"Hello,

Thank you for publishing with Amazon. Copyright is important to us - we want to make sure that no author or other copyright holder has his or her books sold by anyone else. To publish your book, please respond with documentation confirming your publishing rights within four days:

Acceptable documentation can include:

- If you are the author and you are republishing your book after your publication rights have been reverted to you, a signed reversion letter from your former publisher
- If you are the author and you are publishing under a pseudonym, a copyright registration using the pseudonym
- If you are not the author, a signed contract between you and the author granting you the rights to publish the book in the territories, languages and formats you have selected
- If you are not the author, an e-mail from the address listed on the author's (or their agent's) official website confirming that you have the rights to publish their book in the territories, languages and formats you have selected
- If you are a literary agent, a signed contract between you and the author or an email from the address listed on the author's official website granting you the right to act on the author's behalf with respect to the book"


This book is under the same pen name as 5 other books I have published. It's also part of a series, and all the other books were accepted without question.

I emailed them back with a screenshot of the contract and conversation between the ghost writer and myself, alongside the legal agreement from Upwork's website.

I also asked if they could elaborate as I wasn't aware that I had done anything wrong and wouldn't want to make the same mistake again if I had accidentally broken their terms in some way, which I don't think I did.

Their reply was:

"We've reviewed the information you provided and have determined that we will not be making the book(s) available for sale on Amazon at this time because we are not confident you own the exclusive publishing rights to the entire content of your book.

Please feel free to reply to this message if you have any questions.
"

I then replied to them to try and learn more. I asked if this issue was they felt the contents of the book was copied from somewhere by the ghost writer or if they believe I as a publisher had stolen it from somewhere.

Their response was very blunt with further information.

"After further review, we've decided to uphold our previous decision and won't be making the book(s) available for sale on Amazon.

We appreciate your cooperation in this matter and apologize for any inconvenience."


Has anyone experienced this or have any advice to move forwards?

I paid a ghost writer to create an original book for me to which I then own all of the rights.

Thanks
#amazon #book #publishing #rejected
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  • Profile picture of the author TrickyDick
    Originally Posted by Paul Wadsworth View Post

    Yesterday I woke up to an Amazon Alert email which started as follows:

    "Hello,

    Thank you for publishing with Amazon. Copyright is important to us - we want to make sure that no author or other copyright holder has his or her books sold by anyone else. To publish your book, please respond with documentation confirming your publishing rights within four days:

    Acceptable documentation can include:

    - If you are the author and you are republishing your book after your publication rights have been reverted to you, a signed reversion letter from your former publisher
    - If you are the author and you are publishing under a pseudonym, a copyright registration using the pseudonym
    - If you are not the author, a signed contract between you and the author granting you the rights to publish the book in the territories, languages and formats you have selected
    - If you are not the author, an e-mail from the address listed on the author's (or their agent's) official website confirming that you have the rights to publish their book in the territories, languages and formats you have selected
    - If you are a literary agent, a signed contract between you and the author or an email from the address listed on the author's official website granting you the right to act on the author's behalf with respect to the book"


    This book is under the same pen name as 5 other books I have published. It's also part of a series, and all the other books were accepted without question.

    I emailed them back with a screenshot of the contract and conversation between the ghost writer and myself, alongside the legal agreement from Upwork's website.

    I also asked if they could elaborate as I wasn't aware that I had done anything wrong and wouldn't want to make the same mistake again if I had accidentally broken their terms in some way, which I don't think I did.

    Their reply was:

    "We've reviewed the information you provided and have determined that we will not be making the book(s) available for sale on Amazon at this time because we are not confident you own the exclusive publishing rights to the entire content of your book.

    Please feel free to reply to this message if you have any questions.
    "

    I then replied to them to try and learn more. I asked if this issue was they felt the contents of the book was copied from somewhere by the ghost writer or if they believe I as a publisher had stolen it from somewhere.

    Their response was very blunt with further information.

    "After further review, we've decided to uphold our previous decision and won't be making the book(s) available for sale on Amazon.

    We appreciate your cooperation in this matter and apologize for any inconvenience."


    Has anyone experienced this or have any advice to move forwards?

    I paid a ghost writer to create an original book for me to which I then own all of the rights.

    Thanks
    It looks like one of two things may have occurred....

    Thing #1 - Your Ghostwriter or an associate beat you to the punch... and published it on Amazon first.

    Thing #2 - Your Ghostwriter stole significant portions from another book.

    No matter what, you need to research this... and figure out what happened.

    If Thing #1 happened, go back to Amazon and have his book removed....

    If Thing #2 happened, go back and request a refund from Upwork... and give all the details of your agreement with your Ghostwriter.
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    • Profile picture of the author cscamgrl99
      Agreed!

      This typically happens because they (Amazon) found the work or part of it online or in another book they already published.

      If you want to republish, you need to find the offending content and rewrite it then resubmit it. You can use one of those services like Copyscape.
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  • Profile picture of the author Steve B
    Paul,

    Amazon's position toward authors seems to be "guilty until you prove your innocence."

    It may not be possible to do that without the cooperation of your ghostwriter. Services like Copyscape could be helpful - but my experience is they are not infallible.

    Can you squeeze Amazon support a little to divulge which parts of your book they don't like? Other than that, you might want to try a re-write with a different ghost writer.

    Steve
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  • Profile picture of the author toydistrict
    You could use a plagiarism checker tool.
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  • Profile picture of the author Kay King
    I'd first check multiple pages (as in...many) using Copyscape Premium - cost a couple bucks but well worth it.

    You can also use sentences from the book in Google search box using "quotes" - a good method, too but may take more time.

    Until you know if there is a copyright problem - you don't know where to go from here. To me, that's the first question to answer and worth the effort to investigate.
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    • Profile picture of the author Paul Wadsworth
      The ghost writer provided me with Copyscape documents which came back "no results found".

      I tried a couple of Google searches myself and although it came back clear also, a few links appeared and there were a few parts that looked like information was researched from a website and the sentences were quite similar. Restructured in the writers own style. I don't know if that could be it?
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  • Profile picture of the author wolfmmiii
    so your ghost writer plagiarized the work and sold it to you.

    im glad amazon did the right thing
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  • Profile picture of the author Kay King
    Check for yourself. It may not be the problem but that's what Amazon is saying and you can't argue the case without doing your own research.

    Also, not fair to blame the ghostwriter unless you have proof of copying. If text was not copied - is the organization of the book or chapter titles, etc - similar to another book in the niche?
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  • Profile picture of the author Paul Wadsworth
    The book is actually in a series. There will be another 10-12 books, and already have 5 out.

    I actually asked the ghost writer to create them in the same format and style so that they are consistent with one another and this includes certain chapter titles.
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  • Profile picture of the author Paul Wadsworth
    So Amazon replied to me:

    "Hello,

    The documentation you have provided so far has been insufficient to complete the publication process of your book. Therefore we've decided to uphold our previous decision and won't be making the book(s) available for sale on Amazon."

    I sent the Upwork contract with the book title. I haven't registered a pseudonym name because I'd read that isn't a legal requirement and costs a lot to do so.

    However, upon further examination of the using Google and quotation marks, I found a source where a lot of the content has been taken from restructuring sentences. Some questions and shorter ones are exactly the same.

    Sadly my ghost writer has not followed our contract. Guess I'll be requesting my money back and hiring someone else.
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    • Profile picture of the author Shana Walters
      Originally Posted by Paul Wadsworth View Post

      So Amazon replied to me:

      "Hello,

      The documentation you have provided so far has been insufficient to complete the publication process of your book. Therefore we've decided to uphold our previous decision and won't be making the book(s) available for sale on Amazon."

      I sent the Upwork contract with the book title. I haven't registered a pseudonym name because I'd read that isn't a legal requirement and costs a lot to do so.

      However, upon further examination of the using Google and quotation marks, I found a source where a lot of the content has been taken from restructuring sentences. Some questions and shorter ones are exactly the same.

      Sadly my ghost writer has not followed our contract. Guess I'll be requesting my money back and hiring someone else.
      Sorry to hear that your ghostwriter put you in such a predicament.
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  • Profile picture of the author bconlon18
    Hey Guys,

    This happens ALL THE TIME. Amazon has a system, im not sure of the mathematics behind it, BUT i can tell you that even if the book is below 5% plagiarism on most scanners, you could STILL get this email. It doesn't mean your ghostwriter stole anything or copied content, it could, but it's always best to contact the writer or company who wrote the book as most respected companies or writers will have scanned the book before even handing you the book to make sure. EVEN if there was copied content...all you need to do is have the writer fix it and boom you're in business
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