Barb Caffrey's Blog

Writing the Elfyverse . . . and beyond

Quick Note about MuseItUp Publishing

with 17 comments

Some days, the best thing any writer can do is get up, peruse the writing boards, and congratulate people.  Because when we do — as I did today at Forward Motion, the writer’s group I’ve belonged to for seven years — we often find links to new publishing houses we’ve somehow missed hearing about in the past.

Such is the case with MuseItUp Publishing, which is maybe a year old (if that much), but already has a good reputation in the SF, fantasy and romance communities due to the strength of its publisher, Lea Schizas, affectionately called a “force of nature” by her writers.

At any rate, after reading about them, I queried MuseItUp regarding ELFY because ELFY has paranormal elements; can’t guarantee they’ll want to see it, but trying is the first step toward getting an acceptance.

Note that I normally do not discuss which agents or publishers I’ve tried here at my blog, but in this case I thought I would as I know many writers with works in the science fiction/romance, fantasy/romance and flat-out romance categories.  Not to mention straight-up SF, straight-up fantasy, etc.

This seems to be a reliable place with a solid reputation; they’re young, but growing, and they have the word of giving good quality feedback, which is why I have made an exception here.

Check them out at

Written by Barb Caffrey

July 29, 2010 at 12:27 am

Posted in Publishing, Writing

Tagged with ,

17 Responses

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  1. Hi, Barb. I want to thank you for your kind words and to let you know that I did get your query and emailed you.

    We’re not a year old yet. 🙂 And to be honest we only opened for submissions early March but have been blessed with a great staff and a really great bunch of authors so far.

    Once again, thank you and I wish you success in your writing career.

    Lea Schizas

    August 1, 2010 at 6:16 pm

    • You’re welcome, Lea. I got your note and sent back a reply; I appreciated such a prompt response. 🙂

      I was glad to write about MuseItUp Publishing. I hope it’ll help a few more people find out about the books you’re publishing; if I weren’t currently among the ranks of the unemployed I’d have already bought several. 😉

      Barb Caffrey

      August 2, 2010 at 4:48 am

  2. I’m one of the fortunate ones who has contracted several works with “this force of nature,” and I can attest to her contagious enthusiasm. I’ve signed with several houses, and this is truly the first place where I’ve found the team spirit I seek–the first publisher who walks the walk and doesn’t just blow smoke. The authors, staff and “The Force” all work together to forge the business into something that we are all part of. Her motto, “building the team to achieve the dream,” says it all.

    Ginger Simpson

    August 1, 2010 at 8:49 pm

    • Ginger, that is great to hear. Excellent news.

      I’ll have to see what I can do to be able to buy a book or two in the next month; being officially “unemployed” (I don’t see myself that way, not with so many stories to write!) makes it more difficult to buy all the books I want.

      If you ever need someone to review your book, though, please keep me in mind. I’d be glad to read the book and give you an objective review; since I review a great deal at, I already have a forum of sorts. (I occasionally also review at Barnes and Noble’s Web site.) And of course I will gladly post a review _here_ if it’ll help.

      Barb Caffrey

      August 2, 2010 at 4:51 am

  3. as a museitup author, I can tell you you have it right. I have 3 accepted with them and plan on submitting more. Readers can join in at

    Larriane Wills

    August 2, 2010 at 2:55 am

    • Thanks, Larriane. I will have to see if I can join that group myself as I am interested to find out what books will be coming out next. 😀

      Barb Caffrey

      August 2, 2010 at 4:52 am

  4. I’m a less romance-oriented author who has two techno-thrillers coming up for release at Muse Publishing. This is my first experience “behind the veil” so I don’t have anything with which to compare the experience. But there does exist a ferocious “team” attitude among us all, to make this house all it can be. Thank you for your positive remarks.

    Cyrus Keith

    August 3, 2010 at 1:23 am

    • You’re welcome, Cyrus. I’m glad to help; it’s important for writers to know when a good publisher is out there (especially when the good publisher is less than a year old), and it’s also important to let writers know there’s a publisher that wants to see a variety of different genres. (That Lea S. isn’t adverse to cross-genre material is also a big, big plus to my mind.)

      Good luck with your books and I hope I’ll be able to either read/review or at least buy them in the future. 😉

      Barb Caffrey

      August 3, 2010 at 1:35 am

  5. I am a YA/MG Fantasy writer who heard about Lea at an online conference and was impressed then heard about HER online conference and found her new publishing company. I was so excited to become a member of the Muse family after attending an online chat and hearing from the authors, editors and Lea herself. So imagine my delight when my first book was accepted and I DID become part of the family. I was even more delighted to see that my first impressions were spot-on.

    Rebecca Ryals Russell

    August 3, 2010 at 6:44 pm

    • Rebecca, that is wonderful to hear. (Though I am drawing a blank on “MG,” I understand YA and fantasy well enough. :-D) I wish you much success with your writing and life.

      Barb Caffrey

      August 3, 2010 at 8:41 pm

  6. One Writer's Journey: Interview with author Heather Haven…

    We’ve linked to you on . Could you put a link back to us?…

    Blog Interviewer

    August 23, 2010 at 1:45 pm

  7. Hi Barb,
    I just found your blog and I rather like it.

    I know this is kind of an older post but I’ve been looking around at a lot of different blogs and sites trying to get a “feel” for what Museitup and other ePub companies do.

    Unfortunately I’ve come up with a serious lack of anything detailing what these companies provide their authors. I understand cover art and formatting for eBooks, but both of those things are rather easy.

    Do you have any inside knowledge of the marketing practices? Quality of editing offered? Anything else that I may be not be thinking of?

    E. Chadwick

    April 6, 2011 at 12:36 pm

    • Thanks for liking my blog. 🙂

      Most e-publishers offer some editing. My friend Jason Cordova had his first novel, CORRUPTOR, published by Twilight Times books and he had the normal process with editing, needing to make changes, then another round of editing, then sending it to your first readers (’cause even the best editing can miss stuff, sometimes), and then a final round of editing before it was published a few months ago.

      I’ve heard that Lea Schizas is very concerned and committed about MuseItUp Publishing and that’s one reason they’re closed right now — at least, last I heard, because they had so many manuscripts come in that they couldn’t do justice to evaluating them all, and that’s a credit to them as their reputation is good. So I’d imagine that MuseItUp Publishing has the same process Twilight Times Books does — and most reputable e-publishers — with the process I described, above.

      Another good place that has an excellent reputation among authors is Zumaya — I have heard they treat authors well and pay on time.

      Finally, another new place where I know a few of the folks who’ve published there is Naked Reader Press — that’s — and they’ve so far taken very high quality manuscripts (some reprints, some new) and made no missteps. I’ve reviewed one book for Naked Reader and will be reviewing three more as they were interested in me reviewing — that’s _always_ a good thing, to have reviews, but some e-publishers don’t realize that and don’t make the effort — and would recommend them in your search, too, though they’re very, very new (even newer than MuseItUp Publishing).

      As for e-Quill Publishing, where I have some of my work published and some of my late husband’s, they don’t offer a lot of editing. They will help with copy-editing — and that’s good — but there isn’t really the time there for extensive editing. Lawrence at e-Quill will either say “up” or “down” and there aren’t revisions to be made, at least, so far. (They’ve only been around for a year.) But they _do_ pay on time and they mean well; if you are convinced your work is ready to go, you certainly can and should try e-Quill Publishing as well even though it’s a royalty-only place.

      Barb Caffrey

      April 6, 2011 at 7:25 pm

      • I went through 1 and a half novels with Muse so far, and all I can say id “wow.” My cover art on my first novel is professional and eye-catching (at no cost to me). My first work went through two full rounds with a content editor and three more full rounds with a line editor before it saw the light of day. That would have cost me a bundle if I’d gone the self-publishing route. As far as marketing goes, once again, there is the support of the other authors, and what the marketing director does as far as getting word out for an on-line presence. I haven’t seen any radio or TV commercials, or billboards yet, but how often do you see that kind of publicity for anyone? The bottom number is in sales, and I can tell you that for a brand-new publisher to sell the number of books that Lea and company have since opening their doors in October 2010 is quite an achievement.

        Cyrus Keith

        June 13, 2011 at 4:45 am

      • Cyrus, that’s very good to hear. I’ve liked everything I’ve heard about MuseItUp Publishing so far — they, and Naked Reader Press, both have very good reputations (though MuseItUp has signed more authors and may have been in business a tad longer) — and I’m glad to hear some more good news.

        I check in now and again with the MuseItUp Yahoo Group and hear various things (well, I read ’em, anyway) . . . glad to hear everything is going so well. 🙂 (But didn’t they open in October of ’09? Surely they were open before October? Even if some of it was “sneak previews” stuff or ARCs?)

        Barb Caffrey

        June 13, 2011 at 10:39 pm

  8. Barb, we officially opened to submissions March 2010, and our bookstore opened up October 2010. So this year we’ll be celebrating our first one year ‘bookstore’ anniversary.

    I want to thank you for continuing to offer writers helpful information, regardless if it’s for the Muse or not. Writers need as much information to make wise choices where their careers are concerned.

    And glad to see you sneak in and out of our readers group. LOL

    Lea Schizas

    August 10, 2011 at 10:15 pm

    • You’re welcome, Lea . . . I’ve been keeping an eye on MuseItUp Publishing, and the only reason I haven’t asked for multiple books to be sent to me in order to review them at Shiny Book Review ( — or perhaps to pass them to another reviewer — is because I intend to split ELFY (and SBR has a policy that you can’t review for a place where you have something on submission, or until 90 days have passed since a submission has been kicked to the curb). Circumstances being as they’ve been — my Mom has been ill off and on, my Uncle passed away (her brother) last November, one of her dogs has been sick now and again (he’s getting older), the search for any paying work, etc. — I haven’t had time to do that yet, but I’m about to make time for it as it needs to be done. I’m also going to try to re-write my first chapter or so because that might make things slightly more straightforward (the trick there is to re-write just enough to help, but not take the mystery element completely out of the equation).

      I’ll be glad to write a follow-up post if you’d like, because I am happy that MuseItUp Publishing has become successful in such a short time. Any place a writer can submit something and know that a) it’ll come out better than when you started and b) does everything right is something to be celebrated! 😀

      And thanks for your kind words. They are, as always, appreciated. 😉


      As for sneaking in and out of the group, I lurk a lot when I have some time to read stuff . . . this last year has been a whirlwind of mostly away from writing activities. I’ve been editing more than I’ve been writing, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing — but how to turn “editor voice” off and just write? I’m still working that one out. 😉 (But I do enjoy the group whenever I’m able to get there.)

      Barb Caffrey

      August 10, 2011 at 10:21 pm

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