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I've seen the technique work.  It can be jarring to the reader to switch like that, but that can be a positive effect, if the dreams are supposed to disturb the reader a little. 

It seems to me that Robert Crais used third person for small bits of one or two of his first person hard-boiled Elvis Cole detective series.  The story was told first person as usual, but every so often, set off at the end of a section, he'd have a short bit from the killer's point of view in third person. This was far less than 20 percent of the story, but it happened repeatedly enough to feel like a feature and not just an anomaly.

He might have had those sections in italics, but that only works with short sections, imho. 

I have seen more literary/experimental works shift around like that too.  It tends to work when it feels like it has a purpose, and not when it feels like the author is just being artsy.

As for Tense, I'm a bit of a contrarian: I know that first person present tense is the popular thing, but present tense tends to add a dreamlike quality to a story.  So I would say if you are using present tense at all, definitely use it in the dream.  It's up to you and what is your most natural voice as to whether to use it in the main narration.  (I prefer past tense for "invisible" narration. Present is a bit too intrusive and makes me hear the narrator rather than feel in the story. YMMV.)

Camille
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Writers' Cafe / Re: Boil Down Your 2017 Writing Into One Word
« Last post by Rosie A. on Today at 09:21:03 PM »
Grateful.  :-*
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A group of people have decided the book is racist, dehumanizing, etc., based on the authority of two reviewers and the desire to do right by minorities. That's textbook groupthink.

By the way, the decision is "sub-optimal" because it isn't based on evidence.
Hey, can you look up ad hominem in that textbook?

Do you believe that a person cannot object to a book without reading it? That they can't object to certain premises?

And I don't mean censorship or book burning or murdering authors, I mean believing that writing that book was a poor choice on the part of the author?

If you feel they cannot, I'd like to bring up another book recently discussed on these forums, though in that case there was ambiguity about the contents. Well what if there wasn't. What if the blurb stated that the book was an erotic romance between a 40 year old man and his 15 year old daughter? Would people have to finish the book to object to the contents?

Assuming your answer is no. If it is okay to object to inappropriate relationships without reading the book, why is it wrong to object to racism? And while you may argue that that premise isn't racist. That's not a black or white issue, it's a line. Just like inappropriate relationships are a line. Maybe some people feel that if the daughter is 18 then it's acceptable to write the book. Maybe some feel that if she's his stepdaughter and not his biological daughter then it's acceptable to write the book. Some may feel you can write whatever you want, whenever you want and even that book is acceptable in it's current state. No one gets to decide anyone else's lines.

And that's not even taking into consideration that this is a book aimed at the YA market. Keeping children from harm is almost a universal imperative in our society. Our disagreement is over if it's harmful or not, and while yet another book teaching children to view the world with this racist mindset might not be harmful to you, I've listed over the course of this thread at least five different ways it's harmful to me.

But yeah, DURR, groupthink. Don't mind me, clearly I've shown I'm incapable of reason.
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I wrote my story in third past but wrote dreams in third present to give it that sense of now and lack of remembering you get with dreams. I think as long as you have a valid reason for the choice, it can work. But if the dreams are longer sequences, like a chapter's worth, you might tick people off if they are in a perspective they don't like reading or if you italicize the entire thing. That would be my only concern with your idea.
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Writers' Cafe / Re: Lost Preorders
« Last post by Rinelle Grey on Today at 08:55:29 PM »
Thanks Anma Natsu. I was wondering if there might be anything like that that could explain it. Living in Australia, Iím not aware of those sort of things.
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Writers' Cafe / Re: I like Google Docs. But...
« Last post by C. Gold on Today at 08:49:41 PM »
That's a cool feature, although it has limited use. Two people typing in the same paragraph can indeed have amusing results. It's the old multi-user, multi-access database management problem Who's changes have precedence?

Fortunately not many of us do community writing. :D

It's not the legacy code that keeps Word from providing the same functionality. It's that Google apps are server-side supported and Word et al are client-side supported. Two different architectural platforms each with its own set of boundaries.
There is that too, but they are also hampered by legacy stuff that was never designed to be shared in collaborative efforts.
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Writers' Cafe / Re: Amazon yanking sales ranking after a Bookbub promo
« Last post by AlexVDW on Today at 08:46:38 PM »
I'm a heavy reader and I was reading the collective name/series when I first discovered it. I follow some authors and S Savile mentioned what happened the other day.
A short while ago I came a share I saw on Anne Rice's page, which mentions this situation and David Gaughran's post:

http://annerallen.com/2017/10/amazon-crackdowns-amazon-review-trolls/

While vaguely I knew such things happened, I did not have any knowledge of specifics, so all of this is fairly surprising to me.
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Well this isn't impossible to imagine a solution to. Promo books would be in a promo section :)  Just like a book that goes free gets punted over to the free list, then returns to paid once it's no longer free. Same concept, just applied to discounted books. When it moves back to paid it could get a certain % rank bump like they use to do with free.

I know it does get a bit silly when you tease it out. You'd have a paid (ie. regular price) list, a free list, an "on sale" list, a KU list, a prime list. But as silly as that might be

Not silly. I like this a lot.

On each product page, the rank section is going to be a lot bigger, but for those who care, its good purchase choice information.

The problem I have is that it's impossible to define "promo books". All a promo book is from the vendor perspective is a book with a changed price. I could change the price of one of my books to $0.99 and leave it that way for a day or a year. When does it stop being a promo and that starts being the regular price for the book?

So a minor change to the upload function. They add in a permanent price, and not allow it to be changed for 90 days. They put a discounted price next to it, which can be changed any time. On the product page, they display both. If the discount remains unchanged for 30 days, the regular price changes to the discount price, and then cant be changed for 90 days.

If Amazon wanted to nullify the effects of a big promotion -- and it's not clear to me why they would -- all they'd have to do is tweak their algorithms to give less weight to recent sales activity.

They already have. But not at the big promo level, at the better than yesterday level. They already do something which stops you having 2 good days in a row, unless you are promoing both days evenly.

The days of promoing a good day, or having a good release, followed by a continuing growth upward through natural means, are long gone. You get one good, then you crash, then you pick up, have a better day, and crash again. This is deliberate manipulation by Amazon.

Oh i don't know. I think there are lots of ways you could radically change what the top charts look like.

* remove borrow bumps and use pages read bumps
* tie rank bump to revenue (so a $9.99 book gets 10x the rank bump of a 99c book)
* Give rank bonuses to consistently selling books (for instance, a book with 10 sales a day for 30 days straight would get a greater rank bump than a book that sold 300 copies in one day).
* break out the ranks into the various segregated markets (I really like Tim's idea of a separate rank for KU books).

Nothing would be perfect, but there are other combinations of ranking methods that could produce a very different "look" to the store.

Right now, the current method favors heavily: KU Books, Prime books and Bub books.  So no surprise, that's what the charts reflect.

Again, this.

The trouble with pages read rank is it encourages the scammers even more. It also encourages longer books. More so than is happening now.

But if you tied pages read rank to sales income, that would completely nullify KU scamming as far as ranks go. Maybe you dont even need to do this. As long as KU remains in the paid store, KU rank is modified by sales data. So those getting huge borrows, but no sales, get very little actual rank.

I read something the other day about how JC Penney tried an honest pricing approach one time. They stopped having sales and specials, and it failed miserably. The thing is, they weren't running real sales in the first place, they were jacking up 'regular' prices and then offering sales specials that were actually markdowns to the pre-marked-up price. So when they stopped doing that, what they were really doing was offering everything at their imaginary 'sales' prices all the time.
It didn't work, nobody liked it, people lost jobs, and they went back to the patently deceptive practice they still employ.
This isn't an Amazon problem, it's a common tactic in all sorts of industries.

One of electronics stores does this as well. As soon as I worked it out, I stopped even going there. They took over a store I did go to, so I stopped going there as well.

It might be a common tactic, but it doesn't fool everyone.
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Writers' Cafe / Re: Anyone read any funny typos lately???
« Last post by C. Gold on Today at 08:43:16 PM »
My favorite will always be the character who entered the room and tossed his keys into a decorative bowel.
:o :o :o :o :o HAHAHAHA  :o :o :o :o :o
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I love quirky covers.  I create them myself for fun, and I also "collect" them.  Unfortunately, these tend to appeal to niche audiences, and therefore are not the most profitable kind of covers for artists creating for the main Indie market.

Traditional publishing is full of such covers, of course, especially for literary, experimental, and sometimes "mainstream" books.  It can be just as hard to break in to doing covers for those houses as it is for the authors of those books to get published.

I have this theory, though, that those authors -- especially the poets and experimental literary ones who have no hope at all of making money -- are going to be the next wave of indies.  Hobbyists and amateurs may not make a lot of money off their work, but some of them will always be willing to spend some money to produce their baby right.  Maybe not a lot of money, but enough to make it worth offering those odd covers that you create either for fun, or because your "commercial" cover went wrong (but was still interesting).

The problem is getting to this audience, because they won't be here on KB (or not many of them).  They're kind of mavericky, as the saying goes.

I have noticed that they DO hang out on Twitter, though.

I have this old "promotional" Twitter account I created but never use.  I've decided to run an experiment in connecting with the literary crowd. My focus is be tweeting covers that are really interesting, kind of like a gallery or cover collector.  I've been sharing cool covers I find, my own covers, and those of a few other artists, but I'd like to find more artists who are doing oddball, quirky or artsy covers.

The account is Brief Charm Books.

What I want: to find Artists on twitter who actually tweet their covers just to show off the art.  The text can be promotional, but since many of these authors won't yet be looking for an artist, I really don't want to tweet images that are just posters for the artist's business.  The images should be just a cover (or maybe a couple of large thumbnails) offered as something attractive to look at in and of itself.

I've just started this effort, so most of my current following are self-promoting "commercial" authors, but it doesn't hurt to get your covers in front of them.  Besides, even a "commercial" cover can be beautiful and interesting/attractive to the art set, so I will post those kinds of covers sometimes too.

Camille
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