Saturday, June 23, 2007

Sister Vision Press

What do you do when your book vanishes from sight, the publishers disappear and your work of love and creativity simply disappears? Crabs for Dinner was my first published book and I have a place of honour for it in my heart. The story is amusing, fun, interesting and thoughtful for young minds and I absolutely love reading it. The trouble is not that it made me very little money (which is not strange for a first book) but then the publishing company disappeared from sight and although the company was literally a two person operating unit, I have sought them in vain. And all I want is information. This book was culled for Super Senses, an Ontario resource for schools and also written in braille. These things I found out quite by accident.
Crabs for Dinner was reviewed positively in the Globe and Mail. It was great for young minds, very useful for the children to understand and embrace the differences in cultures found in Canada, and it was very humourous with an endearing nameless character. It was edited by a dear friend and great children's author Robert Munsch. It was this book which brought us in contact with each other.
What does one do when someone disappears with another's work silently into the vague metropolis? It's almost as if my book was only a dream. A company with a slightly different name Sister Vision Educational Press has a phone number and address but nobody returns the calls. Even if there is a bankruptcy should we not at least be told what happens to our work? Can I buy it back? Can I publish it again with some other press? These two women were doing a good job for us creative women of colour. We considered them to be women of vision and leadership. Here's my advice: Bankruptcy is a tragedy I would wish on nobody but please do not let it cost you, (as women in leadership, your integrity, leadership and rsponsibility. For me, this is the real tragedy.


Anonymous said...

Sister, I am also a published writer with my book 'There Were Times I thought I was Crazy' published by Sister Vision. As you have, for years I have been attempting to get information about my book which I am still called upon to sign at intervals. To date I still do NOT know how many copies were printed, how much were sold nor any other information that it is my right to know. If you are able to find out something, please inform us as many others are also in our shoes.

Anonymous said...

I am also flummoxed. I wrote a short story which was included in an anthology ("Miscegenation Blues") back in 1994. Like you, I discovered, quite by accident, that the story had been reprinted in a different book, by a different publishing company in 2000. That company informed me that they paid Sister Vision Press $100 for it. I never heard about any of this, though I am supposed to hold the copyright. I've been trying for two years to find SVP, to no avail. Any ideas?

Anonymous said...

According to the "Canadian Books in Print 2004", Sister Vision Press has apparently gone ahead and published my work (debut novel) even though I did not signed a contract with them. I had had it withdrawn from them back in 1998. I am unable to find Makeda Silvera for her explanation! I dont know if for a fact there are actual copies of my novel out there! This is just plain awful!

Anonymous said...

This is the SVP's address and contact:

Sister Vision Educational Press
101 Dewson St
Toronto, ON
M6H 1H4
(416) 533-9353

Queen Macoomeh said...

How awful!
I am also an author. I went the self published route and since then created my own publishing company largely due to the frustrations I met along the way.
I was just searching for Sister Vision when I came upon this blog. Needless to say I will search no more. This is a travesty!
My company is tiny, I only accept as many clients as I can handle. They have all been happy - one at a time. So knowing another company was out there making a mockery of it all...well...shame on them.
Good luck and do not stop writing!