If you hang out in certain online forums or read particular blogs, you’ll be exposed to a lot of author horror stories. Some pertain to publishers, both large and small. Bad covers, no proofreading, or all kinds of financial shenanigans are a few I’ve heard. Just a few weeks ago Melissa Bowersock had a story about the publisher changing her title. Then there are the agent complaints (unresponsive, lack of follow-through, and wouldn’t negotiate for fear of upsetting the publisher are some examples). I sympathized, even though I’d never experienced these things. Or at least I hadn’t until Kat Brooks changed the title of this post. Her explanation was something like, “Come on Baby, sex sells. It’s just a title.” I’m embarrassed to even tell you what my original, not-at-all sexy title was.
But if I’m going to be completely truthful, there are times I sympathize … no, make that empathize, with agents and even publishers. Sometimes I Feel Like an Agent. Oh yeah, that was my original title. Not sexy at all. It’s a long story, but here goes. Continue reading “Love’s Savage Post: A Reviewer’s Confessions”
When a new writer starts out, she must find a way to build an audience. It is a known fact that the best way to do this is for her to get others to talk about her work on their blogs, and for her to accumulate reviews on retail sites like Amazon. I will be the first to say that in the beginning of one’s writing career garnering reviews is a slow, yet rewarding process. One by one, a writer may reach out to potential reviewers and offer her words in exchange for theirs. Giving a free copy of a book to a reviewer for an honest review is undeniably worth it. Some of the greatest writing connections I have made have come from this process, both as a reviewer and a writer. Amateur (as in not getting paid for a review) reviewers are some of the most generous and supportive people in the indie writing community. They are the bee’s knees.
That being said, I am one lone reviewer out of millions. And I am one new author out of billions – maybe trillions at this point. Thanks to platforms like Smashwords and Amazon, indie authors can publish without going through the traditional channels. Many brilliant and worthy works of literature have been read because of this. However, there may be new gatekeepers rising. Continue reading “A New Gatekeeper Rising”
As the indie movement continues to rattle the Goliaths of the publishing world (have you heard that Houghton Mifflin filed for bankruptcy protection?), many authors can find themselves on shaky ground.
Just a quick trip around the Kindle forums—if you dare—will tell most of the story. Readers are ticked off. They don’t want to pay twenty bucks for an e-book. (Heck, I don’t either, and it will be interesting to see how many people snag J.K. Rowling’s new novel at $19.99.) But spend less than four bucks on an unknown? They’ve been burned before. They’ve been bombarded with cheap books, some rampant with typos, grammatical errors, formatting problems, plot problems, and writing that reads like a first draft. Some readers gleefully tell their forum peers that they will NEVER purchase another indie book. On the other side of cyberstreet, at B&N.com, self-published books are locked into the “PubIt!” section, neatly severed from Big Guy Books. Forum haunters write that they are glad for this line of demarcation because, as one reader wrote, “I know to stay away from it.”
I like a good debate. There’s nothing better than challenging assumptions over a bottle of wine. What I like most about it is that you walk away afterward and the discussion can be over. Not so on the old Interweb. Things can get crazy when people polarize around an argument. Take the argument for, or against, traditional publishing.
What does it look like?
A knight stands at a fork in the road. His armor is dented, some of it hanging by hinges. He holds a nicked and rusty sword.
Approaching the knight is a man dressed in running gear, black spandex running pants, the latest running shoes and a sweat wicking tee shirt with ‘best seller’ scrawled across the chest in permanent marker. He comes to an abrupt stop as the knight raises the sword. Continue reading “Of Knights and Knaves – by Perry Wilson”