"A Black Gaping Hole" and a warning to writers

It's an apt title. "A Black Gaping Hole," as I mentioned in a previous post back in 2012, was selected for publication in the March 2013 issue of Aoife's Kiss. However, the story fell into a black gaping hole of its own.

First off, a warning.

White Cat Publications and Sam's Dot (multiple imprints including Aoife's Kiss #44)
To read the open letter of resignation from Dora Badger, former employee, click HERE

Here's a summation of what happened:

In 2012, "A Black Gaping Hole" was selected for publication in Aoife's Kiss March 2013 issue. However, the publisher was taken over and the new publisher (WCP) failed to fulfill my contract. The agreement made with the first publisher was $15 payment plus contributor's copy. I queried and eventually received a response from Dora Badger (the same employee who later resigned). My check was in the mail, she said over and over again. And she apologized each time I didn't receive said check. The print publication was in the mail too.

Wink, wink. Nudge, nudge?

I don't hold her accountable at all. She was relaying only what she had been told to say, and like me, apparently didn't have reason to doubt that both statements were true each time we corresponded. But eventually, I saw her open letter of resignation. I sent queries directly to the editor, Rick Moore, that remain unanswered to this day. On November 5, 2013, eight months after my contract was supposed to be fulfilled and the magazine was supposed to have been published, I gave up waiting and sent one final email with the subject line "Contract Voided: Remove 'A Black Gaping Hole' from all websites." The lingo in my email, in sum, said that in light of their breach of contract, I give no rights to White Cat Publications or Sam's Dot to my story, "A Black Gaping Hole." I also sent a copy of that email as a certified snail mail letter to the address given by WCP on their website.

A fellow author in that issue whom I found via Facebook suggested that I edit my story, change the name, and then submit elsewhere with a brief explanation in the cover letter to other publications. I took that advice, and have been shopping the story since.

The magazine (Aoife's Kiss #44) has actually appeared "for sale" on the WCP and Sam's Dot websites since March 2013. My story and name were listed on the site (not the story text, thankfully), and I keep checking to see if they ever removed it as I requested. Not yet, but I keep hoping they will because I want nothing to do with them.

One of my friends bought the magazine through the WCP site back in April 2013 before I realized they would never fulfill my contract or publish the magazine. She has never received the magazine that she paid for even after querying. She has received no refund or any response to her query. Yet, as of right now, the magazine remains "for sale" on their site.

I think that's called fraud.

UPDATE: On Mar 3, 2014, White Cat Publications website issued a statement which I am copying and pasting here and you can click HERE to see it on their site.

Effective immediately, stories for any and all of our magazines are released. We’re sorry for the long delay in making this decision, but we’re going to concentrate on our books only. We had too much on our plate, so we need to focus just on our book authors.  We’re terribly sorry about all this and apologize to all the writers we hoped publish.  So magazines are on hold until we’ve caught up paying all magazine writers.

That site no longer has a link to Sam's Dot, which was the imprint that took over for Aoife's Kiss. However, you can still Google Sam's Dot and reach their site. There is no mention on Sam's Dot site of the entire release of all magazines (which is all Sam's Dot apparently was for). My assumption is that they are not actually going to catch up on paying all the authors. Needless to say, I'm glad I sent an email voiding my own contract and have since been shopping the story elsewhere. Unfortunately, this was just one of those times where I had to learn a lesson. This can happen to any writer submitting to magazines. Time to move on.


  1. Bria,

    You are a dedicated and gifted writer, and I’m sorry you had to go through this! I have no doubt your story will publish soon with a magazine willing to recognize and reward your talent. I applaud your patience and appreciate your warning to other writers! All the best!

    1. Thanks so much, Cate! You're always such an encouragement to me.


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