Archive for October 18th, 2011

Do publishers accept bribes?

October 18, 2011 in Uncategorized | Comments (2)


Correspondence with Chaudhrey M…


October 13, 2011

‘As I know that you are a famous writer of Penguin Books India, I a 13-year old student and I want to get published like you by Penguin India. Can you help me out? Or tell me that will the editorial team accept bribes to publish one’s manuscript.’

Chaudhrey M…


Oct 14

Dear Chaudhrey M…

I am glad to know that a thirteen year old boy has enough money to offer bribes to editors. This is certainly evidence of rapid economic and educational progress. At your age I had very little money and I don’t think I had any idea what an editorial team was. And if I’d known I certainly would not have thought of spending my pocket money on them.

Fortunately I have not (so far) had to pay bribes to anyone at Penguin India or any other publisher. In any case, I doubt I could afford it because most of the people who work at Penguin India seem to be extremely well off. If they have a going rate it is likely to be out of my reach.

My general impression is that bribery is not very common in the publishing industry. But now that you have brought it up I think you may be on to something. I have certainly wondered sometimes how certain books managed to make it into print.

Perhaps you could organize a ‘sting’ operation and film it with your mobile phone? I am sure the major TV channels would be willing to offer a good deal of money for such a tape.

If you should happen to proceed with this experiment I do hope you will keep me informed. I would be most interested in the results.

Best wishes

Amitav Ghosh


Oct 15

I do not have the money yet but my plan is to fist e-publish it, collect money and then bribe. So It seems a quite difficult task indeed so I want you to do some “sifarish” for me to Penguin India or just edit it to fix it according to the “Penguin style”.

Chaudhrey M…


Oct 16


Dear Chaudhrey M..

By coincidence, I have just received an e-advertisement that may provide a good solution for you (below). It will certainly be a lot cheaper than a bribe.

Best wishes

Amitav Ghosh




Our Prices End Where Others Begin

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We are once again offering our Whole Nine Yards Package:
-Complete Copy Editing
-Interior Formatting
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-Print Publishing Account Set Up
-Print ISBN
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-Global distribution to,, etc.
Everything you need to turn your manuscript into a published book
(reg. $799)
Comparable packages elsewhere cost thousands…

*Based on avg. 333 words per page/250 pages (80,000 words) per book and online pricing as of 08/10/2011



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