Diggory Press: The Journey So far & The Quest For Truth


It is a story of intrigue, deception, fraud, defamation, theft, forgery, religious persecution, death threats, hatred, subterfuge and much more, culminating in investigations by the British Police Force, Scotland Yard, An Gardai (Irish Police Force) and I have even encountered unsubstantiated claims of Interpol being involved; resulting in, at first, small claims court actions, and now, potentially, a civil court case early next year.

The entire three year-long events about this case could have come straight out of an Ian Flemming book or the latest espionage offering from Tom Clancy. As far back as those dark winter days of 2007, when we witnessed the unfolding drama on the Book & Tales Forum about Diggory Press.

(WARNING: Grab yourself a coffee or tea – you’ll need it if you delve deeply.)

http://www.booksandtales.com/podforum/viewtopic.php?t=4797 http://www.booksandtales.com/podforum/viewtopic.php?t=4957

It was, in particular, the exchanges of posts between Stephen Manning and Rosalind Franklin, which took us into the wee hours of the mornings—this almost had a book written all over it—from the moment the very first written word was penned. Indeed, it is a book I might just take up writing. One of the reasons the whole issue intrigued me was how many of the issues furiously and tirelessly debated touched upon all that was critical about the pro’s and con’s of an author embarking down the self-publishing pathway. These issues are going to be eagerly argued next year, such as; who owns/or should own an ISBN when a book is self published through an author solutions company?; is that company responsible for/how the book is listed on line?; how does an author really get their publisher/author solutions company to provide details of sales and royalties?; is an author paying for a service or entering into a form of publishing contract?; what avenues of arbitration/mediation do author solution companies and authors have? Many of these issues in the traditional world of publishing have long been hammered out and we have the benefit of author and publisher guilds and associations, as well as literary agents. In the self-publishing world, we are all at sea.

The principle parties in this case are Rosalind Franklin, proprietor and owner of Diggory Press, Stephen T. Manning, an academic in Counselling Psychology and Comparative Religions and owner and proprietor of Checkpoint Press, and five other individual authors of books submitted for publication to Diggory Press over the past three years. There were some one hundred individuals who expressed grievances against Diggory Press over this time frame; some 20+ proceeded with claims through the courts, being refered to mediation, some cases have been dropped through expense of civil action, legal frustration or weakened cases and others were struck out. A few remain pending or have reached settlement. The court case of March 2010 pertains specifically to Diggory Press, Stephen T. Manning, and five other individual authors.

I have long held my opinions (right or wrong) on the Diggory Press legal action on this site by a number of authors which has been on-going since 2007 and remained objective in my views. Most visitors who have left comments have acknowledged this objectivity, a small few disagreed that I was being objective (Hi, Wordsmith!). Make up your own minds; the link below includes most, if not all, postings and comments made on this website. I might also add that several of those authors involved in this dispute posted here, and by actual name, which I respect. Others, I have met on writer forums, and about a half-dozen or so have corresponded with me privately.

http://mickrooney.blogspot.com/search?q=diggory

Over the past three years, I have seen whole web sites and blog sites appear, almost entirely given over to discussion on Diggory Press and the comments and actions of some of its disgruntled authors or the complete and utterly irreverent espousing on the virtues of Diggory Press (rightly or wrongly). The only sizeable equivalent of sustainable comment and discussion I have seen is that of Publish America. Few of these sites and blogs gave any real balance. To me, they may have started well, but they degenerated into simple mouthpieces for either party. It seems you had to be in the Diggory Press/Franklin or Manning/The Authors (original seventeen) camps, and dare you thread the waters in between!

Well, in the last couple of weeks, the debate has kicked off again, more ferociously in fact than ever. Links are provided below to the current commentary. I won’t provide the specific links, as those involved, affected and interested will already be aware of the debate enough to delve deeply into the sites to find the ‘true’ story. Some of the evidence which will prevail on the upcoming court case is present, though, I suspect, not nearly as much as will transpire early next year. The case was recently reset to go ahead in March 2010.

(WARNING: Grab yourself a coffee or tea – you’ll need it if you delve deeply.)

http://sleuthfortruth.blog.com/
Ah! Another new one pops up as the Bravejournal site bites the dust – June 10th.

http://sleuthfortruth.bravejournal.com/
as of June 9th, this link was now directing to Bravejournal homepage

http://ianvincent.wordpress.com/

http://rahabsplace.wordpress.com/

http://endtimespropheticwords.wordpress.com/

http://sleuthfortruth.wordpress.com/
suspended by WordPress

Weighty and sharp stuff, I think you will agree. But I must add an additional thought about the recent above links. There has always been an unsavoury undercurrent of ‘religious’ belief and discussion just under the surface of all this. In my mind, it has never had anything to do with the actual case, yet, it remains central in the passions and ideology stirred to some degree in all of us. There is one thing which comes across as very clear about the two principle figures in this case, Rosalind Franklin and Stephen Manning, regardless of where you stand or what you believe/disbelieve about either of them or what has been said or claimed by either party.

They are both highly intelligent, centric individuals, well educated, and deeply passionate about what has shaped their beliefs, academically, theologically, religiously and have been effected greatly by their own life’s experience. Yet, look back on all that has been said, and it is clear both are charging headlong toward what each believes is, in both their own words, at various times, ‘THE TRUTH’. It has been a mantra for both of them. For one, it is ‘The Colour of Truth’, for the other; it is ‘The Word of Truth’. If they are both right and they continue like this, around about late March next year, they will both reach the same singular point and violently bump heads.

It is a little rudimentary, but then, searching for the ‘Truth’ often leads one onto a singular path which misses much of the universal perspective, thereby, removing the individual far from what actually made them what they are and what they are to become. No righteous indignation or facts written upon a piece of paper take us any closer to the ‘Truth’ because none of us have any ownership on the ‘Truth’ no matter what our proof. Believe, just for a moment that you own it, and it becomes ephemeral.

I wish all parties well and they both find contentment and wealth of spirit whatever the outcome.

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