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  1. #11
    Rogue Mutt
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jay Greenstein View Post
    Here you are, still hijacking someone else's thread for your own personal pique. You could open a thread of your own, and endlessly rant about how much you hate Jay Greenstein because he fails to appreciate your brilliance, and not drive away yet another poster.

    But that's not your style.

    An interesting thing: Those "reviews"you quoted were from people just like you, on a site like this one, who couldn't handle the ideas of the professional teachers and publishers, and so placed revenge reviews on my work. One way to tell, is that like so many of the reviews of your own work, the ones posting them don't have that all important, "Verified purchase" attached.

    But of more importance, this thread isn't about my writing. Nor are the points I mention my opinion. The information I give can be found in any book on writing technique, or heard in any class on commercial fiction writing. I can point to the relevant passages, because unlike you, I'm not expressing my own views. In fact, in the post you dismissed I gave two links relevant to the discussion.

    So you're wasting your time. When you post a rant about me I find it amusing, and sleep better knowing you're pissed...again.

    Do you want better reviews of what you post here? Post work that's showing, not telling.
    This is so hilarious. I shoot down your delusion that my writing doesn't sell, so what do you do? You whine that I'm hijacking the thread. You're wrong so hurry, let's change the subject! But of course you couldn't resist that one little poke at me by saying "One way to tell, is that like so many of the reviews of your own work, the ones posting them don't have that all important, "Verified purchase" attached." Which is another delusion of yours that can easily be verified by a trip to Amazon. And the ones that don't say "verified purchase" it doesn't necessarily mean anything since I've had my books on sites besides Amazon and have given some away in paperback and so forth.

    Anyway, I have read books on writing technique and I don't remember any of them saying "You shouldn't be describing anything." Because it's utter nonsense like most of the junk you spout. If you were even an "expert" you might be able to sell a few books.



  2. #12
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    Again, you disrespect the one starting the thread
    I shoot down your delusion that my writing doesn't sell,
    Perhaps you have a story doing that well. But when I looked at your Amazon page, the first twelve entries were rated:
    Sales ranking Title
    #1,115,407 Girl Power
    #1,115,407 Betrayal Begets Blood (Tales of the Scarlet Knight #5)
    #687,192 Chance of a Lifetime (Chances Are) (Volume 1)
    #583,692 Last Chance (Chances Are #3)
    #542,012 Second Chance (Chances Are)
    #1,656,452 Change of Heart (Tales of the Scarlet Knight #4)
    #1,555,662 Future Shock (Tales of the Scarlet Knight #6)
    #922,361 The Impostors (Girl Power #2)
    #1,473,738 The Hazards of Love (Tales of the Scarlet Knight #3)
    1,692,272 The Heart of Emma Earl (Tales of the Scarlet Knight #8)
    1,670,318 Living Sacrifice (Tales of the Scarlet Knight #7)
    #1,457,304 Sisterhood (Tales of the Coven)

    And seven of those were free on Kindle unlimited.

    The other three author pages matched in sales. A lesson to take from this: it’s always a mistake to brag when the evidence against that brag is a key-touch away.

    So you write a lot. I certainly can’t fault that. But you can’t brag about your professional level of knowledge because the real-world evidence doesn’t support that.

    One of the nice things about teaching is that you’re able to present the views of people who have built on centuries of development, in place of your own—even if you’re not capable of using that information well, yourself. So while you’re advising people on how you write, I’m passing on the thinking of giants, like Sol Stein, professors like Jack Bickham and Dwight Swain, and agents like Donald Mass and Noah Lukeman.

    You and I are “experts.” They’re professionals.

    So you can continue this, but you’re wasting your time. I don’t care what you think about me. And hijacking the threads of other writers this way sure as hell isn’t going to endear you to them.

    So post your writing. I’ve carried the water to you but you choose not to drink, as is your right. So I won’t bother to comment it in the future, unless you reference me in your posts.

    But this crap, senseless bragging and hijacking the threads of nice people who came seeking a bit of advice, accomplishes nothing. You can say what you care to, and I’ll say what I care to, and we'll assume that the one asking for the advice is smart enough to take what they need.

  3. #13
    Rogue Mutt
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    "Senseless bragging?" You're the one who accused me of not selling. "Perhaps you have a story doing that well." Perhaps? Perhaps?! I posted the link to it. All you had to do was click it. Are you really that inept? Here's the link again: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B011J872RU Wow, clicking a link is so difficult.

    Meanwhile, your last 4 books have a grand total of 0 sales.

    I don't advise people on how I write. Most of the time I just give my reaction as a reader. Unlike you and Oberon, I don't believe that there's one particular method or "secret" to writing. Because there isn't. If there were we wouldn't need thousands of self-help books on writing.

    If you didn't care what I think of you then you wouldn't keep responding to this. And that "hijacking the threads of nice people?" You really think anyone is going to buy that? Anyway, I know I told you this before but I've been here over 9 years. Plenty of people have called me a big meanie in that time, so big whoop.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jay Greenstein View Post
    Again, you disrespect the one starting the threadPerhaps you have a story doing that well. But when I looked at your Amazon page, the first twelve entries were rated:
    Sales ranking Title
    #1,115,407 Girl Power
    #1,115,407 Betrayal Begets Blood (Tales of the Scarlet Knight #5)
    #687,192 Chance of a Lifetime (Chances Are) (Volume 1)
    #583,692 Last Chance (Chances Are #3)
    #542,012 Second Chance (Chances Are)
    #1,656,452 Change of Heart (Tales of the Scarlet Knight #4)
    #1,555,662 Future Shock (Tales of the Scarlet Knight #6)
    #922,361 The Impostors (Girl Power #2)
    #1,473,738 The Hazards of Love (Tales of the Scarlet Knight #3)
    1,692,272 The Heart of Emma Earl (Tales of the Scarlet Knight #8)
    1,670,318 Living Sacrifice (Tales of the Scarlet Knight #7)
    #1,457,304 Sisterhood (Tales of the Coven)

    And seven of those were free on Kindle unlimited.

    The other three author pages matched in sales. A lesson to take from this: it’s always a mistake to brag when the evidence against that brag is a key-touch away.

    So you write a lot. I certainly can’t fault that. But you can’t brag about your professional level of knowledge because the real-world evidence doesn’t support that.

    One of the nice things about teaching is that you’re able to present the views of people who have built on centuries of development, in place of your own—even if you’re not capable of using that information well, yourself. So while you’re advising people on how you write, I’m passing on the thinking of giants, like Sol Stein, professors like Jack Bickham and Dwight Swain, and agents like Donald Mass and Noah Lukeman.

    You and I are “experts.” They’re professionals.

    So you can continue this, but you’re wasting your time. I don’t care what you think about me. And hijacking the threads of other writers this way sure as hell isn’t going to endear you to them.

    So post your writing. I’ve carried the water to you but you choose not to drink, as is your right. So I won’t bother to comment it in the future, unless you reference me in your posts.

    But this crap, senseless bragging and hijacking the threads of nice people who came seeking a bit of advice, accomplishes nothing. You can say what you care to, and I’ll say what I care to, and we'll assume that the one asking for the advice is smart enough to take what they need.

  4. #14
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    If you didn't care what I think of you then you wouldn't keep responding to this.
    You misunderstand. I don't care what you think of me, because it would only matter if I respected or admired you. I think your posturing is funny. You're in high-dudgeon mode, lashing out simply because I dared find fault with your writing.
    I've been here over 9 years.
    And have successfully helped to destroy a forum that could have been a thriving writing community. There's been no one posting other than you for over a week. And when someone finally did, instead of helping them write with more skill you hijacked their thread. With you as the welcoming committee it's no wonder the place is all but deserted.

  5. #15
    Rogue Mutt
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jay Greenstein View Post
    You misunderstand. I don't care what you think of me, because it would only matter if I respected or admired you. I think your posturing is funny. You're in high-dudgeon mode, lashing out simply because I dared find fault with your writing. And have successfully helped to destroy a forum that could have been a thriving writing community. There's been no one posting other than you for over a week. And when someone finally did, instead of helping them write with more skill you hijacked their thread. With you as the welcoming committee it's no wonder the place is all but deserted.
    Since you've only been here since May you wouldn't have any idea about the history of this place. This is the same thing that happened when I caught you being completely wrong about one story I posted. Instead of just admitting the mistake, you had to keep "lashing out" as you like to describe it. Because Jay Greenstein can't possibly admit he's wrong about anything. Ever.

    But let's face it, the Jay Greenstein Way is only a way to failure; you've got the sales to back that up. Since the moment you got here, you tried to set yourself up as this big expert, the Guy Who Knows Things, but it doesn't seem to help you out very much, does it? All that "professional" advice and it doesn't seem to do jack for you. One has to wonder why you keep regurgitating it from site to site. I guess that's the only way you can feel like you're superior to everyone else.

  6. #16
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    Because Jay Greenstein can't possibly admit he's wrong about anything. Ever.
    Well, you got that right, of course.
    But let's face it, the Jay Greenstein Way is only a way to failure; you've got the sales to back that up.
    Son, you haven't a clue of what I call success or failure. But of more importance, since you have a body of work over double the size of mine, and your stats are significantly worse than mine, what did you just call yourself?

    You made a big deal about the fact that you have a book only 47,883 from being number one. Okay, that's good, and not easy to achieve. But it's free on Kindle unlimited, and still on the new releases list. Wait a month. Water Dance, after two years on the market, is 9,643 at the moment, which is pretty lousy, I'll admit, but still, trumps yours by factor of three. So if your goal was to show how you outsold me, you lose. I'm less impressed by the fact that the stats are right there on the page, but you were so angry, and anxious to find ammunition to to lash out with, you didn't see the obvious. You really need to stop and relax, because you're the only one here at war.

    But forget that sales and stats. I'm a lousy writer. I've never claimed to be anything else. I'm sure I have only a fraction of your magnificent talent. But that matters not at all, because I'm not talking about how I write, or presenting my views on the process when I give advice. And I link to professional sources, where the hopeful writer can see what the pros say, and suggest books that can help. So all the breast-beating about how wonderful your writing is, and how lousy mine is is irrelevant, except for one thing: Since you began attacking me, my sales have taken an uptick. I suppose I should thank you,

    Take a breath and let it out, slowly. If you really want to get back at me, pick up a copy of Dwight Swain's, Techniques of the Selling Writer. Read it slowly, and carefully. Try out the things he recommends, to see what it does for you. Rewrite a scene using M/R units to see how it helps with POV. At the least you'll have what you need to refute what I say. And who knows. The last guy who did that included my name on a dedication page, because after picking up a copy to prove I was wrong, he ended up selling his novel. So give it a try. Like chicken soup for a cold, it can't hurt.

  7. #17
    Rogue Mutt
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jay Greenstein View Post
    Well, you got that right, of course.Son, you haven't a clue of what I call success or failure. But of more importance, since you have a body of work over double the size of mine, and your stats are significantly worse than mine, what did you just call yourself?

    You made a big deal about the fact that you have a book only 47,883 from being number one. Okay, that's good, and not easy to achieve. But it's free on Kindle unlimited, and still on the new releases list. Wait a month. Water Dance, after two years on the market, is 9,643 at the moment, which is pretty lousy, I'll admit, but still, trumps yours by factor of three. So if your goal was to show how you outsold me, you lose.
    Kindle Unlimited doesn't count towards sales rankings, especially now since Amazon counts pages read instead of units borrowed for their calculations. I've sold 10 books today; you probably haven't sold that this entire year. So please, just stop embarrassing yourself. I wish it were easier to post pictures on this forum. Then I could post my Amazon sales chart for the month and you could post yours, which would be a straight line.

    What you should be worried about is your book might be 9,643 on the Free rankings yet apparently no one is buying the sequels. That might tell you something.

    Looks like I was able to get a sales chart loaded. Awesome. In case you can't read the legends, the green line is free units, the red is units sold. The second chart with the purple is for Kindle Unlimited. There's nothing before July 1 when they switched to pages read.
    Last edited by Rogue Mutt; 07-19-2015 at 07:54 PM.

  8. #18
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    You have one book breaking the 100,000 mark. One out of 44, and it's on the new listings at the moment. So I wouldn't brag about how many sales you have because you'll have to explain why the rest aren't selling. And no matter how many excuses you make I have more than three times that number saying yes on a daily basis. And that will continue tomorrow, next week, and next year.

    But forget that. You're trying to prove that your trickle of sales makes you a better writer. But that's not the question, because I've never said I'm a noteworthy writer. The number of sales we make combined is insignificant. Neither of us have enough expertise to foist our own ideas on how to write on anyone else, because if they follow the advice perfectly they'll have no publishers figvhting over them, either. So your constant sniping is a waste, because you're not criticizing my views, you're dismissing those of people like Jack Bickham, who wrote and sold seventy five novels—and earned the rank of Honored Professor. You're dismissing the teaching of Sol Stein, and Dwight Swain on the basis of having a single book on Amazon under the rank of 100,00 from the top.

    I can't speak for anyone else, but I'll take the words of an Honored Professor over yours on any day.

  9. #19
    Rogue Mutt
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jay Greenstein View Post
    You have one book breaking the 100,000 mark. One out of 44, and it's on the new listings at the moment. So I wouldn't brag about how many sales you have because you'll have to explain why the rest aren't selling. And no matter how many excuses you make I have more than three times that number saying yes on a daily basis. And that will continue tomorrow, next week, and next year.

    But forget that. You're trying to prove that your trickle of sales makes you a better writer. But that's not the question, because I've never said I'm a noteworthy writer. The number of sales we make combined is insignificant. Neither of us have enough expertise to foist our own ideas on how to write on anyone else, because if they follow the advice perfectly they'll have no publishers figvhting over them, either. So your constant sniping is a waste, because you're not criticizing my views, you're dismissing those of people like Jack Bickham, who wrote and sold seventy five novels—and earned the rank of Honored Professor. You're dismissing the teaching of Sol Stein, and Dwight Swain on the basis of having a single book on Amazon under the rank of 100,00 from the top.

    I can't speak for anyone else, but I'll take the words of an Honored Professor over yours on any day.
    I think you must have developed amnesia. You said, "Mutt, I'd take your crap a lot more seriously if your writing was selling"

    My sales aren't Hugh Howey numbers, but they're better than yours. It's a fact that you might as well just accept.

    As for the rest of your diatribe, you read Sol Stein and Dwight Stein and Jack Bickham. Big whoop. I don't think any of them appointed you their emissaries, or even know you exist. And I doubt any of them ever said, "You shouldn't be describing anything." I think we can attribute that to the "wisdom" of Jay Greenstein, who apparently can only give books away.

  10. #20
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    "You shouldn't be describing anything." is a strange assertion. Every novel I've ever read is littered with descriptions from start to end.

    Even the samples Jay has linked to have lines such as

    "he climbed down and stood in front of his rocking-horse, staring fixedly into its lowered face. Its red mouth was slightly open, its big eye was wide and glassy-bright."
    That's quite clearly a description of a rocking horse.

    "For there lay The Combs--the set of combs, side and back, that Della had worshipped for long in a Broadway window. Beautiful combs, pure tortoise-shell, with jewelled rims"
    That's quite clearly a description of combs.

    How much description you need is genre dependent. Readers of Fantasy and historicals tend to be more keen on getting a rich feeling of setting than readers of fast paced thrillers or romance, but whatever you're writing you do need to learn how to describe things well.

    I sometimes don't know if Jay is trying to persuade people to buy these books or put them off. He claims to just be echoing what they say. But if I thought Dwight Swain was some professor saying that you shouldn't describe anything then I'd assume he was some fusty academic who was dealing in some strange academic theories of literature rather than the real world of commercial fiction.

    The thing is Swain isn't saying anything of the sort. He has some useful ways of thinking about things.

    Maybe Jay is trying to say that you should aim to make the reader feel they are experiencing the descriptions rather than feel they're listening to a narrator telling the descriptions. But I'd still class it as description, even if you've pulled off an illusion as to where it's coming from. (I think there are times when a narrators presence is useful, but that's a separate debate and if you don't know how to make the narrator vanish when you need too, you've not got all the tools you need)

    Jay is right that long lists of thing, most of which the protagonist is ignoring, is rarely the right way to go. But there are plenty of opportunities to describe things that the character is taking notice of, or interacting with. They'll be less description possible in high drama parts where the protagonist might be more concerned with not being shot than with the decor. Though if to avoid being shot, your character dives behind the pool table, bashing his knees on the hard floor tiles. - you've managed to build a bit more of the setting incidentally during the action.
    Unless I'm misreading things, it seems to me that the OP is already mostly describing setting via actions, which is fine.

    The trick to keeping things succinct while still giving an image in a readers mind, is to pick specific and interesting details. The reader will fill in a lot of the obvious or extrapolate from what's already been given. I used a pool table in my example. I could have just used table, but that would be missing an opportunity. Most rooms have tables and they come in a vast array of shapes and sizes, so mention of a table does little to enhance the readers image of the room.

    The horse example above, picks what's unusual. A slightly open red mouth is odd on a rocking horse. It gives an image of an old fashioned toy, made in times before that might be considered creepy and gives me an image of the rest of the horse.

    Another thing which can help with description is not to just go for the visuals. Engaging all five senses helps the reader feel part of the scene far more. (though I have to admit, I only find occasional opportunities to use taste.)

    A reoccurring setting is a different issue though. Beyond a point you don't want to keep adding to the description because the reader will have already fleshed out the place in their heads, so if you suddenly make mention of something unexpected that's always been there, it'll jar. Mostly you will do less description later.
    Dialogue heavy sections can be tricky. Sometimes in later drafts it will be possible to rearrange things so some of the talking happens in combination with the 'a lot more happens there' stuff.
    You can make use of character actions to occasionally reference bits of scenary that have been described previously and keep the image fresh. Find different ways to interact with the scenery, but you don't need to do this too much. Maybe your character sometimes sees things a little differently when under the influence of drugs. What was once a tree bent over a river, now looks like a giant bird taking a drink. That sort of thing could be interesting.
    You can also have characters bring some different things with them on different visits, just so they have different things to interact with and keep the character actions fresh. Even a simple packet of peanuts could lead to them lobbing peanuts at each other.
    Last edited by Dogsdinner; 07-20-2015 at 03:17 AM.

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