Em Kwissa’s Dealings with Lulu.com

This is a sad and disheartening story. I hope it ends well for Ms. Kwissa, and I hope the self-publishing platforms like lulu.com learn to take more care in dealing with authors. This speaks to the heart of my fear of publishing–initially my thought was of self-pub, but really this can come from any publishing platform, traditional or otherwise, that is more interested in churning out content than protecting authors. But my god, I can’t think of a more grisly and awful place for Lulu to make a misstep.

Am I Not - Emily Kwissa

Hi. This isn’t Emily. My name is Rusty Priske and I am a friend who is trying to help her with the problems she has been having with Lulu.com. Em has provided all the screen captures included. This is her story.

There is a much bigger background to all of this… much, much bigger.  That is not my story to tell, however. It is Emily’s.

Emily chose to share that story in the form of a memoir. The book reveals her story of growing up abused (sexually, physically, psychologically) by the person she now refers to as ‘my mother’s ex-husband’ but who was once her step-father.

You can download and read the book at Emily’s website – under the Media tab. (It is currently available for Kindle and Kobo e-readers, but anyone who prefers a pdf can send her an e-mail and get it that way. She is also arranging…

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6 Comments on “Em Kwissa’s Dealings with Lulu.com

  1. Emily is my grandniece. She has been like a flower unfolding in the past few years. What talent and courage to tell her story! Despite the Lulu controversy, the truth will set her free. She knows she is in the right. The perpetrator can’t hurt her any more. She’s not a child now. Besides – she is taller than him and can most likely kick the crap out of him! I’d pay to see that! I love you Em! Viv xxxxx

  2. Emily’s great aunt again, here. The person or persons who say that Em’s book is a work of fiction have no idea just how much hurt and disruption Emily’s former stepfather not only caused her, her mother and siblings, but her whole family. How dare they say this was all fabricated when Em, her mum and brother and sister continue to have counselling for the years of abuse they suffered. That pain will follow them the rest of their lives. Financially, it wiped out my brother’s retirement money in court costs. All of the family have had to pitch in to help Tracy and the children restart their lives. The perpetrator seems to be happily resettled with a new family leaving devestation behind like a car wreck in the rear view mirror. I am so angry that anyone would dare think this is all made up and it makes me even more glad that Emily had the guts to come forth and write about the whole ordeal. The man who caused all this hurt should remember that he has two younger children, now in their teens, who also went through hell with him and are now of an age to press charges if they wished. All the rest of us can do is to offer them comfort and encourage them to move on. Am I Not is no fabrication. It was just the beginning of what will be a lifetime of anger, sadness, and loss for Emily, Tracy, Fletcher, Megan, and their extended family.

  3. This is a very sad story, but to blame an online self-publishing service for any of it is a very mis-placed bit of anger. You cannot expect an online site to risk being shut down over a story no matter how horrendous, awful, and evil. If the story is about real people, changing the names does little to stop it from being libelous if it has not been “proven” in a court of law. The law may be an ass, but it is what it is. For them to allow libelous content to remain on their site could result in Lulu not being able to serve the hundreds of thousands of authors who rely on them to publish their stories.

    • This makes a big assumption… that there is libelous content.

      Lulu never even made that determination. They pulled the book without even investigating it based one one complaint. That complaint came from someone whose name never apepars in the book. In fact, there is a decent amount of evidence that says that he had never even read the book when he filed thecomplaint.

      In fact, if the book WAS full of lies, who would have no idea what she was even claiming in the book. I am pretty sure that he knew exactly what Emily was claiming however, since he had lived it.

    • Lulu is at fault . By pulling Em’s book they are supporting the silencing of a victim. Everyone has a right to tell their story. We all have one. Whether the story holds up to another’s version of the truth is irrelevant. Our stories are ours to tell. Any publisher who silences an author based on claims of libel or privacy infringement is cowardly and mistaken in their assumption they have a role in such disputes. A publisher protects its author’s right to tell their stories, be they fact, fiction or memoir. Disputes about the merits of the factual content of a book are between the complainant and the author. If Lulu is correct, no author can publish any story unless they can back it up with hard evidence. In this case, the evidence is in public records of trials, court proceedings, medical records etc. However, this book is written as a memoir, not a biography. These methods of proof are not required. Em had told her story. Her abuser does not like that she has. Lulu took a side and it was the wrong one.

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