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  1. #11
    Senior Member Frank Baron's Avatar
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    Re: Yikes! Nobody here....really??

    "Foolish or wise?"

    How about unlucky? How about uneducated? How about naive?

    To flatly state: "Perhaps all these "sharks" are doing a service, gobbling up the slow swimmers so that agent desks aren't quite so thick with them" is at the very least, cynical and dismissive of others' misfortune.



  2. #12
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    Re: Yikes! Nobody here....really??

    Frank,

    We're speaking a different language. I don't call failing to do diligent research misfortune. Yes, I assume that many folks who pay to publish are uneducated and naive, two readily remedied conditions. Unlucky? Perhaps, but it hardly applies here. You can't unluckily fail to research the publishing process, publishers, contracts, and, oops, write a big check.

    This does not make these folks bad or undeserving of sympathy, if you're so inclined. It's probably nice, in the first flush of realizing their mistakes, to get some sympathy from other writers. I'm not criticizing you for being sympathetic. But too many times, I see these folks continue to focus on how they were done wrong rather than on the primary culprit of their discontent -- themselves.

    I'm pointing out that the mistakes Marcia mentions are entirely avoidable. That she was foolish to fail to learn from others. I hope that Marcia and others will not be so lax in their next foray into uncharted territory. In the meantime, the folks who have done their homework will benefit from fewer Qs in the slush pile.

    Research is important to so much in writing. I've got a character in my WIP who's a drummer. I've been reading drumming books and watching youtube videos to make sure I get the lingo down just for little tics in her conversation and a few scenes in which she's got sticks in her hands. If I miss something, no doubt some drummer will write to me about the error. I'm not going to complain about my error; I'm going to make a note of it so I can change it in the paperback edition. It is incumbent on us, as writers, to research what we don't know, and, when we learn of errors, to patch them up.

    I'm not against self publishing and even self published a little booklet, based on a shtick I do at writers' conferences and lectures. I found a free e-print company that does not buy any rights to my work, took maybe two hours to format and pick cover stuff, and puts a few bucks in my bank account every so often. The whole endeavor, including researching companies, took half a day. This isn't intensive research. It's simple compared to the research that does into writing a book. I still think folks who are sore over their mis-adventures in publishing had to screw their eyes shut pretty tight to create their "misfortune."

  3. #13
    Senior Member Frank Baron's Avatar
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    Re: Yikes! Nobody here....really??

    We're not speaking a different language, CK. We're talking across an ethical divide that isn't going to be bridged.

  4. #14
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    Re: Yikes! Nobody here....really??

    Agreed.

  5. #15
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    Re: Yikes! Nobody here....really??

    I'm bored and drunk, Frank, so let's not let this go so easily.

    You've stated that our ethic are at odds.

    I agree. Your ethics leave foolish and greedy folks secure in their foolish, greedy selves. Heaven forbid that we tell them that their "being taken" is actually thier greedy foolishness. No. Your ethics mandates we protect them from the truth -- the smart and able will surpass them every time.

    Nice on a post on a forum. But ineffectual for actually helping the Ms get a grip and stop blaming the distance from CA to FL and lack of mentors and her blog posters for being negative and whatever for her foolish greed. So your ethics are about making sure no one feels too bad. My ethics are about ascertaining what foolish nonsense is holding these idiots back and throwing it in their face. Change or die. And I"m far more sympathetic than agents and editors.

    Who's more ethical, Frank? You'd rather protect these folks from the facts. I think they're better served by acknowledging the fact that they failed and the fault lies with them. That's empowering. Your deserving, unlucky terminology is not.

  6. #16
    Senior Member Frank Baron's Avatar
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    Re: Yikes! Nobody here....really??

    You sure were drunk.

  7. #17
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    Re: Yikes! Nobody here....really??

    One hopes. B)

  8. #18
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    Re: Yikes! Nobody here....really??

    The only thing I have to post about nonfiction writing is itís a hundred times easier than fiction. You just have to choose a subject you know well. If you just spent thirty years running a certain kind of business or have been an avid hunter or competition shooter or a scuba diver or whatever, you donít even have to do much research Ė you already know the subject. It helps if the subject has broad appeal, but even if only a small segment of the public is interested in your particular expertise it can sell well enough to give you a good return on your time. Nonfiction can be a money maker for the self-published and is probably the one type of book worth self-publishing as far as money goes. It does not take much writing talent to write an interesting and informative nonfiction how-to book, at least not compared to writing a novel.

  9. #19
    Senior Member Frank Baron's Avatar
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    Re: Yikes! Nobody here....really??

    Yep James, non-fiction is the best and easiest route to publication for many writers. If you're adequate at research and can rearrange the alphabet in a pleasingly readable manner, you can make a decent living at it. It's not glamorous and is unlikely to lead to an Oscar nomination but it can be rewarding in all the aspects that matter.

  10. #20
    Junior Member Marci Mathers's Avatar
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    Language is always changing. Inventing words is not new. Case in point, blog and vlog.

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