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Writers' Cafe / Re: Thousand Words a Day Club 2018
« Last post by Simon Haynes on Today at 10:40:37 AM »
Working on a non-fic, 1100 words done. None on the fiction title, but I did scribble 10 pages of handwritten notes.
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Writers' Cafe / Re: Thousand Words a Day Club 2018
« Last post by V.P. on Today at 10:34:36 AM »
1103 today.
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Writers' Cafe / Re: Can anyone explain NetGalley to me?
« Last post by TrishaMcNary on Today at 10:27:10 AM »
I just signed up for a one-month NetGalley tour through a co-op, and then I read all the posts about it. I only have 3 reviews on my new book, and I need more to get the promos that ask for at least 5-10. It sounds like there's some risk of getting harsh reviews, but I feel more comfortable with using NetGally than Hidden Gems, for example. (I guess time will tell.) I think HG readers are mostly romance readers who also read other genres, but they'll have expectations about romance that my book won't meet. My tour starts May 15. I'll post the results back here in June in case anyone is looking for more info about experiences with them - from a newbie subgenre perspective. :)
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Not sure this adds any further observations that aren't obvious, but when I went to the site, I saw:

1) Home Page caousel works like the Products > Books splash page below, except no BUY & WIN messages. Prices for books under $4.99 are all "around" the real price -- like $0.98 or $1.00 when a book is selling for $0.99. A handful of the books are of a certain subgenre of contemporary romance that are currently ranked #500 or better. But there's a HarperCollins book that's actually $0.99 that's listed on FlipCloud as $3.65 that's ranked in the #5000s.

2) On the Products > Books splash page, clicking the cover/title takes you to a separate product page.

3) There's also a BUY & WIN $100/$25/$$ button direct to Amazon with an aff code -- but no way to obviously track who's clicking, so no idea how you'd be entered to win.

4) On the separate product page, the BUY & WIN button still has the aff code with no other tracking, but further down is this message:
Form? I didn't see any way on the website to sign up.

5) No disclosures about being in the Amazon affiliate program on the website.

6) No disclosures about any of the "contests" on the website -- in the US, legally, there MUST be a way included to enter a contest without purchase.

7) I didn't see them selling books directly from the site -- they seem to direct link to Amazon or an author's website -- so not sure where the KU concern is coming from? Or did I miss that? Not that there aren't enough red flags there, but I don't think this is one.
Yes, a giveaway that requires a purchase becomes an illegal lottery in all fifty states, and I believe the same is true in the UK and several other jurisdictions. Not only that, but if people are clicking through to Amazon with that kind of incentive, that would definitely be rank manipulation.
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Writers' Cafe / Re: Looking to Acquire Established Ebooks
« Last post by Bill Hiatt on Today at 10:16:13 AM »
It's not just an emotional element. It's good business to own creative properties and lease them, not sell them. Unlike buildings and cars, creative properties do not depreciate. You lose nothing by holding onto them. You can argue that a certain subgenre of book will become unsellable in the future and therefore valueless; in response I can give you the names of creative works from many years ago that are still making money. My position on this issue is not an emotional one. It's a business position informed by hard experience (luckily for me, not mine).
While it is possible for some creative properties to become dated, many will definitely keep selling. Some of the the cult favorites have actually made far more in the long haul than they made initially.







 
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Not sure this adds any further observations that aren't obvious, but when I went to the site, I saw:

1) Home Page caousel works like the Products > Books splash page below, except no BUY & WIN messages. Prices for books under $4.99 are all "around" the real price -- like $0.98 or $1.00 when a book is selling for $0.99. A handful of the books are of a certain subgenre of contemporary romance that are currently ranked #500 or better. But there's a HarperCollins book that's actually $0.99 that's listed on FlipCloud as $3.65 that's ranked in the #5000s.

2) On the Products > Books splash page, clicking the cover/title takes you to a separate product page.

3) There's also a BUY & WIN $100/$25/$$ button direct to Amazon with an aff code -- but no way to obviously track who's clicking, so no idea how you'd be entered to win.

4) On the separate product page, the BUY & WIN button still has the aff code with no other tracking, but further down is this message:
Quote

This Book is enrolled in $100 Fliploud Reward Program- Buy this book to win $100 Paypal Cash or $100 Amazon gift card

Oops! We could not locate your form.

Form? I didn't see any way on the website to sign up.

5) No disclosures about being in the Amazon affiliate program on the website.

6) No disclosures about any of the "contests" on the website -- in the US, legally, there MUST be a way included to enter a contest without purchase.

7) I didn't see them selling books directly from the site -- they seem to direct link to Amazon or an author's website -- so not sure where the KU concern is coming from? Or did I miss that? Not that there aren't enough red flags there, but I don't think this is one.
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There's something colloquially called a "squeeze" or sometimes a "cliff" when analyzing markets or some other systems. Basically, it means the point where the statistical curve turns toward a limit. Depending on which direction we're talking about (upward, downward, forward or backward) it means something rises, falls, takes off or regresses suddenly and quickly.

An example is in the commodities markets when too much money chases a scarce commodity that has few if any immediate substitutes. The price of oil is a classic example--the price will rise in a sudden, non-linear manner when a certain combination of supply and demand is reached, because everyone's competing for the same limited pool of available oil.

How does this apply to commoditized ebooks (those that are highly consumed and largely interchangeable, like the stereotypical romance (no offense to romance, I'm talking about the "hamburger" quality books))? There are a couple of ways I can think of:

If a genre is underserved i.e., reader demand for new books exceed supply, where the voracious reader is constantly scouring the lists for something new, then it's relatively easy to "make it" as an author.

If the genre is overserved, i.e., theres a glut of content and even voracious readers are swamped with reading material that creates a "cliff" in an author's ability to sell books. Instead of any adequate book being bought and read, quality and visibility start becoming far more important as only, say, the "best" (commercially) books have a chance of being bought.

The key to understand is that this is not a linear process. Upturns or downturns in processes happen suddenly, at the "squeeze" or "cliff" points. Luck (or what might be called pseudo-luck, i.e., hidden and unpredictable forces) plays a big part, but also anyone whose presentation and/or marketing isn't tip-top runs a greater risk of hitting a cliff.

Then you throw the artificial non-market forces and exploits of KU into the mix and certain effects are enhanced or suppressed, like electromagnetic waves striking each other and refracting and so on, except it's far less predictable.

There are two basic approaches to dealing with this kind of situation. The approaches are not mutually exclusive and can be combined, and also scaled.

Approach one is to gain as much knowledge of the situation as possible, and constantly adjust tactics and strategies. Sometimes this means reacting to trends, and sometimes this means trying new things to get ahead of trends.

Approach two is to "spread your bets" in various ways--more books, more types of content, multiple genres, going wide, a broad portfolio of ads and promos, etc.--focusing on breadth rather than depth for the long term.

How does this help? It may at least help understand why an author's commercial success income rises and falls. At the very least it should tell us all that we must expect changes, expect downturns, expect our cheese to be moved.

Using a stock market analogy, we have to decide whether we'll be day traders, or single-stock (or narrow portfolio) investors, or whether we want to spread our investments out, accepting possibly lower profits so as to decrease volatility. And, we have to decide whether we're willing to enter the hypercompetitive and even dirty/shady areas of the business (such as where the Mastermind types live) or do we find and live in areas of business that are less challenging and more stable.

This is a great post.

I seem to have found stability through speed. I still publish at least a 50,000-word novel every 6 weeks or so. I don't know how I do it. In 2018 I've pubbed over 160,000 words with more on the way, and I haven't entirely figured out how I'm not dead.
The books sell and get page reads (these are KU only for now). I was wide but found my overall income sagging, so I went back into KU, where I'm happier because I can at least focus my advertising a little more.

I'm also doing the sort of diversified portfolio thing: I have one Contemporary Romance series that sells well when I advertise it, but will never hit bestseller lists. I have several PNR series and am currently putting the finishing touches on the first in a 7-book speculative fiction series that's controversial enough that if we find our audience we'll sell (think the anti-gun crowd in the U.S. at the moment combined with fans of the Handmaid's Tale).

All of it depends largely on ifs. And the ifs are becoming fewer and farther between these days. What used to be easy is now a Sisyphean task. But I still do it, because a) I love my life and this is a large part of it, b) it gives me a freedom that no desk job ever could and c) I'd go nuts if I weren't creating.
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There's something colloquially called a "squeeze" or sometimes a "cliff" when analyzing markets or some other systems. Basically, it means the point where the statistical curve turns toward a limit. Depending on which direction we're talking about (upward, downward, forward or backward) it means something rises, falls, takes off or regresses suddenly and quickly.

An example is in the commodities markets when too much money chases a scarce commodity that has few if any immediate substitutes. The price of oil is a classic example--the price will rise in a sudden, non-linear manner when a certain combination of supply and demand is reached, because everyone's competing for the same limited pool of available oil.

How does this apply to commoditized ebooks (those that are highly consumed and largely interchangeable, like the stereotypical romance (no offense to romance, I'm talking about the "hamburger" quality books))? There are a couple of ways I can think of:

If a genre is underserved i.e., reader demand for new books exceed supply, where the voracious reader is constantly scouring the lists for something new, then it's relatively easy to "make it" as an author.

If the genre is overserved, i.e., theres a glut of content and even voracious readers are swamped with reading material that creates a "cliff" in an author's ability to sell books. Instead of any adequate book being bought and read, quality and visibility start becoming far more important as only, say, the "best" (commercially) books have a chance of being bought.

The key to understand is that this is not a linear process. Upturns or downturns in processes happen suddenly, at the "squeeze" or "cliff" points. Luck (or what might be called pseudo-luck, i.e., hidden and unpredictable forces) plays a big part, but also anyone whose presentation and/or marketing isn't tip-top runs a greater risk of hitting a cliff.

Then you throw the artificial non-market forces and exploits of KU into the mix and certain effects are enhanced or suppressed, like electromagnetic waves striking each other and refracting and so on, except it's far less predictable.

There are two basic approaches to dealing with this kind of situation. The approaches are not mutually exclusive and can be combined, and also scaled.

Approach one is to gain as much knowledge of the situation as possible, and constantly adjust tactics and strategies. Sometimes this means reacting to trends, and sometimes this means trying new things to get ahead of trends.

Approach two is to "spread your bets" in various ways--more books, more types of content, multiple genres, going wide, a broad portfolio of ads and promos, etc.--focusing on breadth rather than depth for the long term.

How does this help? It may at least help understand why an author's commercial success income rises and falls. At the very least it should tell us all that we must expect changes, expect downturns, expect our cheese to be moved.

Using a stock market analogy, we have to decide whether we'll be day traders, or single-stock (or narrow portfolio) investors, or whether we want to spread our investments out, accepting possibly lower profits so as to decrease volatility. And, we have to decide whether we're willing to enter the hypercompetitive and even dirty/shady areas of the business (such as where the Mastermind types live) or do we find and live in areas of business that are less challenging and more stable.
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So I just really need to tell someone this and I don't think I can ever tell anyone in real life, so hey kboards, what's up?

I'm a guy, as you might have guessed from the subject line. I have not published an ebook yet, I'm a lifelong journalist/freelance writer and I thought maybe I'd try to write a few erotica shorts just to see what happens. Also working on a LitRPG as my username would suggest, but I digress.

I'm self-employed and usually do all of my other writing at Starbucks or some other random coffee place. Today, after getting my regular work done, I decided to open up Scrivener and try to put together an erotica short. 18-year-old male high school student dominated by older female teacher, if you care to know, lol.

I was a little paranoid about writing it in public. But one of the tables was in a corner and no one could sit behind me and look at the screen so I was OK with it.

I start writing. Please note that I am wearing sweatpants today because of course I am.

I get really into the story. Completely zone out, I'm living inside the world on my screen, not paying attention to anything around me. I get to 3000 words pretty quickly. I finally take a break and only then realize that I have an absolutely raging erection. This was my first time really trying to sit down and write a full erotica story, so I guess you could say today I also learned that I get turned on by my own writing, lol.

But back to Starbucks, I look up from my laptop, notice the erection, realize I'm wearing sweatpants, realize I've been sitting here like this for a while. I then notice there is a young girl standing right next to me. A very young girl, still at the age where they can kind of go, "hey, I wonder what's going on over here" and just walk up to a total stranger and say hi or whatever if their parents aren't paying attention.

The girl doesn't say anything but she's glancing at my laptop. At this point, I'm just glad she's not glancing at something else. I realize that if I say anything at all to her and someone else looks over, it's going to look like I have a huge erection while talking to a little girl. I grab my jacket off the back of my chair and put it on my lap. The girl walks back to her mom, I finally calm down, pack up my laptop in a hurry and leave.

TLDR: I got turned on by my own writing at Starbucks, had an erection in sweatpants for unknown length of time, was dangerously close to speaking to a very young girl while having a giant hard-on. I want to die.

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Let's Talk Kindle! / Re: Help choosing Kindle
« Last post by crebel on Today at 09:25:01 AM »
I also have a vision issue that results in only one eye doing all the reading, compensating for the bad eye that is uncorrectable, as well as arthritis issues with both hands.

I personally never liked the Paperwhite Kindles, but lots of people are very happy with them.  Both the Voyage and the Oasis 2 have been miraculous for me.  Even though my cellphone is significantly smaller than even the Voyage, it is still heavier than either the Voyage or the larger Oasis and, in my opinion, easier to drop because there is less object to hang on to.  The "real" buttons of the Oasis are MUCH easier to press than the haptic press spots (not really buttons) of the Voyage.  When using the Voyage I almost exclusively tap the screen, with the Oasis I almost always use the buttons.  I have a lightweight cover on both mainly for personalization and protection. When weight is an issue for my hands, I remove the cover and read with it "naked" once I'm settled wherever I am reading.

For my eyes, the ability to change the brightness up and down as needed with the additional lights on both the Voyage and the Oasis is vital.  Additionally, the greater number of font sizes as well as the latest ability to increase the boldness of whichever font you choose is tremendous.  All of those things together have allowed me to continue reading hours a day.  I also love the slightly larger screen of the Oasis 2 which gives me that little bit more word real estate at the larger font size I require.  The additional weight for that screen size has not been an issue for my hand problems.

I don't think you can go wrong with either the Voyage or the Oasis 2
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