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Writers' Cafe / Re: What exactly is the Amazon dungeon?
« Last post by she-la-ti-da on Today at 07:01:05 AM »
Not all erotica is in the Adult dungeon, but almost all books in the dungeon are erotica (some things get flagged for various reasons). Things that the reviewer (not customer, but Amazon employee tasked with reviewing erotica) thinks goes beyond the bounds of even the normal smutty stuff gets the tag, and disappears from searches. I believe, if I'm remembering a discussion from years ago, that the books will show up if directly searched for by title, but won't if someone just looks for a general search term.

People have reported that sudden drops in sales/pages read will turn out to having the book put in the dungeon. It can happen upon publication, or if the book is reviewed again for any reason. This is why many experienced erotica authors won't change anything on books they think may be skirting being dungeoned, because it triggers another review and the person looking at it might think it's over the line.

I think there should be a filter as well. I was searching for something -- forget now what it was, but I do know it was nothing even remotely related to anything sexual -- and in the "customers also viewed" spot was a very large, very realistic looking male genital sex toy. I almost fainted, I was so shocked to see it there, among the normal, every-day stuff that shows up when you search for something. This had never happened to me before, and I had to wonder what keywords/tags the seller had used. They must have hit everything they thought could possibly bring their product up in searches!
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Writers' Cafe / Re: Amazon KDP Select Authors and the Gig Economy
« Last post by Seneca42 on Today at 07:00:52 AM »
a fascinating decision by London to ban Uber...

https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/europe/london-rejects-ubers-license-saying-ride-share-doesnt-protect-passengers/2017/09/22/6241d210-9f82-11e7-9083-fbfddf6804c2_story.html?utm_term=.24ad678ae313

regardless of whether you are free market or favor regulations, what's legal when it comes to Internet-driven companies is constantly in flux.
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Writers' Cafe / Re: Pantser-turned-plotter going back to pantsing...
« Last post by Jena H on Today at 07:00:44 AM »
About outlining -- I'm digressing a bit here from the central points of our conversation, and based on everyone's posting history I don't believe what I'm about to say applies to the folks here on Kboard -- I cannot tell you how many aspiring writers I've come across who can spend years and years plotting and outlining. These are folks who never actually finish their Great American Novel. They go to writers group meetings and can talk at length about structure, techniques, and a litany of other super-advanced writing concepts which I had neither heard of or understand (what do I know? I only write and publish books that some readers actually buy).

For these folks, the outline becomes their excuse to never get started. I sit there, patiently listening to them telling me about the story they're working on, giving them all the positive encouragement I can. All the while, I'm thinking: write the damn story already!!! You got nothing until you have a completed manuscript! And all the while, knowing almost for certain that the great novel they're talking about will never be born.

This reminds me of the movie Authors Anonymous, in which a group of writers are all diligently working to become authors--except for doing the one thing that will make it happen:  writing a book.  Then a young upstart joins their group and -- shockingly -- submits a book and gets published.  While the others have been play-acting at being "writers" (some busy outlining/plotting, some revelling in being the 'tortured writer'), this girl was actually doing the butt-in-chair, hands-on-keyboard work of actually writing.

Note:  all of this is not to say that there's something wrong with being a plotter or outliner.  Obviously that method works for a LOT of people.  I wish I could be that organized.  But no, it doesn't work for everyone.  and of course it goes without saying that that's OK, and THERE IS NO RIGHT OR WRONG WAY.  The fact that some people have gotten their hackles up about this is more than a little silly.  (IMHO)
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Writers' Cafe / Re: Question about the equipment POD services use.
« Last post by ilamont on Today at 07:00:33 AM »
I don't have specific answers to your questions about cost, but if you hunt around you can find out names of some of the vendors of this equipment and how it works. Maybe with a vendor name and model number you can track down a sales sheet or second-hand seller. Here's a starting point: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VcTDVZZ2MGU

I have talked with two local printers who offer "POD" but it turns out that they don't do any of the book printing at their small shops, which are really oriented toward office needs, posters, brochures, annual reports, business cards, etc. They said if they get an order for a POD book they had to send it off to a specialist with the right type of equipment to not only handle the printing but also the bindery aspects as well. This indicates to me that the equipment required is either not standard for most printers and/or doesn't generate enough business to justify installing and maintaining. And I suspect the maintenance aspect is a significant ongoing cost.

Regarding the quality question, offset is the gold standard with POD services by Createspace and Ingram about tied for second (lots of variation from run to run, I have found). Digital short run comes in third and the vendor I used is not close to offset.
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Writers' Cafe / Re: AMS Ads Learning
« Last post by LilyBLily on Today at 06:58:45 AM »
How do you guys do all this?

I honestly can't keep up. I used to be vigilant checking my ad performances. The SP ads take regular tweaking -- I mean at least once a week. And it usually takes me several hours to add new KWs, change bids, etc to keep the ads effective (barely -- the A-Zon algo has definitely make it harder and less profitable than a year ago.)

I can't find enough time. I have books to write, and other promo stuff. And all the ancillary stuff like dealing with cover designers, editors, etc. Not to mention research (but I guess most of you usually can skip that part.) And God forbid I do other usual promos like submitting for ENT, Booksends, etc which takes up yet another chuck of time. Then the occasional necessary social media stuff, responding to readers and other authors, coordinating with other authors. Plus I've got books I want to read too, and all those books get put to the back burner.

I can't find enough time to keep working the AMS ads. I feel like I'm drowning and barely keeping my head above water every time I finally check in on my ad performances.

And I find it extremely boring!! Spending hours looking for new KWs, checking to see which KWs I need to increase bids. It's SOOOO boring.

I wish I can pay somebody to manage my ads and do FB ads in top. (Yeah. FB ads. That's another can of worms. . . . )

It helps to like numbers.

I only tweak keywords from time to time, after I've collected new ones, usually author names. I don't do anything extravagant to look for new keywords because in my AMS ad experience the most basic ones work the best: Amazon categories, top author matches, etc. Then I'll spend an hour adding them and changing individual bid prices.

I collect data on a daily basis but I confess I do not analyze it daily, and I don't collect specific keyword data on a daily basis, either, because...not nutso.

The Product Display ads I'm running are dangerous in that once you commit to an ad spend, you can't lower that total, and the minimum is $100. You can terminate the ad, change the bid amount, and change the date range, but you can't lower the total amount you're risking. So those ads require frequent checking, in case Amazon suddenly decides it wants all my money today. As Casslie Leigh has reported, that can happen.

I found applying to ENT and the other ad venues an enormous time suck with very little payoff. Facebook takes arguably less time than an AMS ad to get targeted, but for me they've simply resulted in money grabs. I'll have to try again sometime, but the process is so intimidating I'll keep on with AMS until the ad costs per month overwhelm the profits. They're creeping up, making my ads in the competitive romance field less and less profitable. But they're also creeping up for my nonfiction, which has very little competition.
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Writers' Cafe / Re: Pantser-turned-plotter going back to pantsing...
« Last post by Doglover on Today at 06:54:29 AM »

One writer above said they were into their 35th rewrite on a story. What!? That right there tells me that plotting is the way to go. In my opinion, 35 rewrites is ridiculous and suggests a story that probably shouldn't have even been started. Or at least, planned out a little better.
The way to go for YOU. I never plot anything and I never to any rewrites either. I change what I've got, perhaps 2 or 3 times, but rewrite? Never.
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Writers' Cafe / Re: Voraciousreadersonly?
« Last post by Herefortheride on Today at 06:54:27 AM »
How would one do that? Make people take a survey before they could buy your book? Don't read X amount, sorry, no book for you?

I'm asking if anyone has worked with the website "voraciousreadersonly".
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Also, can I just say how funny it is that PayPal will let *cough* someone funnel hundreds of thousands of dollars through their system, breaking the TOS by using F&F to avoid fees, without an objection ... but they're all over me for donating to a charitable cause too many times? LOL Nice job, PayPal. This is precisely the standard of quality I've come to expect from your "services."
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Writers' Cafe / Re: Page flip kicks me on the way out...
« Last post by TimothyEllis on Today at 06:53:37 AM »
Adding a plus one to David's snort.

I'm not sure snort is an adequate response.

Here in Oz, the appropriate response is a full on dummy spit.
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Hey, all, just a heads up.

I've been donating every week or so (whenever I have some extra scratch) and today I got this notice:

Quote
Dear GoGetFunding Donor,
Thank you for donating to the campaign "It Takes a Community to Take Down a Scammer". You have now made four donations via PayPal.
Due to PayPal compliance restrictions that are out of our control, you cannot make further donations to this campaign via PayPal.
If available, you can donate more to this campaign but only with a different payment process if the campaign has enabled that.
Sorry for any inconvenience caused.
Kind Regards,
The GoGetFunding Team

So just be aware that if this happens to you, you can also send money directly to Christina and she can update the GoGetFunding page to reflect that.

It's pretty close to being funded at this second level!

That link again: https://gogetfunding.com/it-takes-a-community-to-take-down-a-scammer/
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