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Topics - Vaalingrade

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So I'm not in KU at all, so I generally don't even look at my page counts. However, I just threw down a new release, a 182 page, 70k word book. Today it went live and I went to grab the link only to find that Amazon's fake voodoo page count thing 1) reports on non-KU books and 2) has mine listed at 277 pages.

Now, I do my best to run an honest business and I also know some things are beyond my control but this seems to be something that is going to come back to haunt writers long term.

Allow me to explain: this book is not a long book. Most of my readers can finish it in a day or two. However, while they're finishing a 180 page book in that time, they're being told they're finishing a 280 page book instead.

This is going to create expectations. Already we have people who leave bad reviews or skip books for being too short. Now they're going to be seeing 300 pages as too short.

Now people will say that's not a problem because all books are artificially inflated in the Amazon ecosystem, so in a relative sense 300 is just the new 180. there are two problems with that:

First, Sears and Roebuck, AKA: This Too Shall Pass. Amazon isn't going to be the big gorilla forever no matter what anyone says. No big business lasts forever as a monolith. Either competition arises to become Pepsi to its Coke, or something takes over as Coke to its Royal Crown Cola. And when that happens, it's highly likely that that new store will report accurate (or at least in the realm of reality) page numbers to a population of book readers who have been taught that 300 pages is tiny.

Second, I'm not only selling on Amazon and other people don't only buy on Amazon. Let's say that Amazon really does last forever unto the heat death of the universe. Well I'm not exclusive to them. My readers aren't exclusive to them. But some of them will undoubtedly get their start reading my work from Amazon before possibly following my entreaties to buy it from DTF instead or they buy a print edition which DOES have an accurate page count. Again, they go from being shown ridiculously inflated numbers to the real ones and it gives the illusion that my output has decreased.

The running theme here is that the discrepancy of the Kindle page count to anything approaching reality will eventually reflect poorly on the author for readers who care about page count.

I'm not even wanting them to be honest about the page count, I just really, really wish they labeled it accurately as the page count as displayed by kindle devices, not the count that would be reported in say an industry trade or an actual, physical book. Or hell, report the real page count when there's a Matchbook linkage at least.

Also it looks stupid that the print edition of a book is 200 pages and being digital magically makes it almost 400.

Writers' Cafe / Someone trying to Sell Unauthorized Books on Dailymotion
« on: November 02, 2015, 05:12:28 pm »
My Google alert hipped me to someone with a promo video trying to sell my book on an unauthorized site. From the profile, they've got 88 videos for a wide spread of Fantasy books.

Check out this link to see if you've been a victims and to report them for using the site to illegally sell stolen books.

Writers' Cafe / My First Author Event Is Coming Up Tomorrow
« on: October 16, 2015, 10:12:35 am »
Our library is having a local authors event; signings, Q&A, all that good stuff, and I've been invited to take part.

I've been a panelist for a webcomic group at cons before, but I had my artist with me and it was more group-oriented. Here, we're each getting speaking time and our own table to sell/sign our books and I've never done this kind of thing before. It's both exhilarating and terrifying (and I like public speaking).

I've got a question though for people who've done this before: what do you talk about during the talking sections? Am I supposed to busk for my books? Is that bad form? Should I start ranting about how the Moon Landing was fake and how the Civil War was a false flag operation perpetrated by Canadian werewolves?

Writers' Cafe / Anyone Else Get A Weird February Statement from D2D?
« on: August 05, 2015, 11:54:28 am »
I'm pretty sure I got paid for my Jan/Dec stuff at D2D already, but I just got an email from them with a February statement (Separate from my May/June statement) saying money has been sent to my Direct Deposit account.

That money isn't in my account but the May/Jun payment I expected is. I'm guessing this was a glitch, but I'm curious of if this was just involving me or if this is a problem they should be made aware of. Granted, they'll know now that I've posted here regardless but you know...

Writers' Cafe / Time to Step Back and Get a Bit of Perspective
« on: July 02, 2015, 08:17:23 am »
I've had it just about up to here with the shoddy way the people that got hurt by the KU change have been treated.

Yeah, yeah, business is business and therefore should be cold and professional and whatever, but the way short fiction writers are being treated is the opposite of professional; it's childish. They're being called children, scammers, told that they're whining, that they don't put in as much work as long form writers, and that they've been gaming the system and this is some kind of karmic retribution.

That's bull.

Yeah, I'll admit that my first response to hearing about this was 'told you so', and I get the spite directed toward actual scammers, scrapers, choppers and other assorted folks that worked very hard to give short fiction a bad name.


The people here? The People we're talking to every day on these forums? The weren't scamming. They were doing what they were encouraged to do. They were following what Amazon itself told them was the will of the audience. Highly charismatic people were telling them to go all-in; that this was the future and it was the long form writer who was going to have to change (lumbering, doomed dinosaurs we apparently were a year ago). Everyone that tried to tell them different, that it wouldn't last, was a heretic and a naysayer and a fool.

That's what they were getting here in a place dedicated to giving the best advice and information possible.

And don't dare say they don't put in as much time and effort into their work as the longform. I'm primarily longform. Take a look at my work and you'll see 100k+ pretty often. The book that gave me some of the worst trouble? The 13k word short that took me a month to write because it was very difficult to cram my usual worldbuilding and action into something that short.

So they were told all this and put all this work into it... and now they've gone from $1.30 to maybe as little as a dime overnight. That's a 90%+ loss. That's going from paying your bills to filling your gas tank. It doesn't matter that the $1.30 wasn't sustainable of if it was more than they were charging for it; that was what they were being offered for over a year and now people are being hurt by this. I don't give a damn about your 'business' when there are people suffering; what they need right now is support and sympathy and advice on how to adjust, not recriminations and browbeatings for having natural, human reactions to having their lives turned upside down.

If you can't do that, then please just gently seethe in rage at these awful huu-mans in silence; they really don't need your bile right now.

Writers' Cafe / DriveThru Fiction has a new promotional tool!
« on: March 25, 2015, 10:25:50 am »
I was just checking my sales on DTF today when I discovered a new tool that's been added: the DTF Deal of the Day.

Basically, you use your Publisher Points on a book that's normally $2.99 or more and have it appear randomly on the front page at a set discount.

I just set the big RB book up for one and we'll see how well it works. Just another awesome tool DTF has to offer writers with no strings attached.

Writers' Cafe / [Craft] Fantasy Peeps! Let's talk names.
« on: February 17, 2015, 06:49:31 pm »
Specifically, I was wondering what percentage of the proper nouns in your setting is made up wholecloth. Further, do you have a pattern or scheme to what those names are, or do you just make them up on the spot? do people from different races/species or cultures have different sounding names? Do you max in normal names?

I personally like having internally consistent systems per culture. Ere halflings have a number of different male and female suffixes an take the last name of their opposite gender parent. Hailene have Classical names like Alexander or Magdalene. Miare (catfolk) have lots of r's and few guttural stops. humans/Half elves from Novrom have Greek/Roman-esque suffixes in thier last names (Arunsteadeles, Truedeles, Haraticus).

Names tend to be an issue for all writers, so let's talk about our processes and ideas.

Writers' Cafe / Updating 'Also By...' in the Back Matter
« on: January 14, 2015, 11:23:31 am »
Just a random kvetching thread.

I never updated any of my books beyond corrections and such, so now that I'm on the cusp of releasing books 14 and 15 (both miniseres things from The Descendants), I'm actually feeling the pain of those with big catalogs and a modicum of marketing will.

To give some idea of how out of date some of these things are, I've got a book that lists its sequel as coming soon where the sequel now has four sequels itself.

Writers' Cafe / [Craft] Fantasy Peeps, Let's Talk Magic Systems
« on: January 12, 2015, 12:38:08 pm »
If there's one reason I love Brandon Sanderson's work, it's the level of attention he puts into making each and every magic system in his worlds and how he usually puts more than one into each world.

Magic systems, especially unique ones, are hard. It's not uncommon to see a writer just give up and either just go with basic rituals, or that old Dr. Strange standby: Magic can do anything as long as it's plot sensitive.

Do you detail your magic systems? Tell us about them!

There's a lot of gab going on right now about business and maximizing profits and filing TPS reports and synergizing or whatever thing it is.

I get that we're publishers and money is the most important thing in the universe, way ahead of integrity or scruples. Fine.

But you guys know that the money comes from these people called 'readers', right? And that they give us money (for fiction at least) to entertain them. Not dazzle them with our convoluted strategies or pricing plans; to make them feel a thing they want to feel and fill some time in their day.

It doesn't matter what your price points are, or how you plan to crush money out of their spleens like wine from grapes if in the end you aren't entertaining readers, making them want to come back and inspiring them to recommend you to others. There is nothing in your adorable business strategy more powerful than the Almighty Word of Mouth.

Now, as is  the tradition on KB this year apparently, I'm going to tell you exactly what to do and ridicule you if you don't follow through regardless of other data.

Are you ready for the magical one-shot, instant kill secret? here it is:

Be Thoughtful

Step back from your six billion word a day schedule and your $100 dollar, 12-page unedited books for a second, sit down and meditate on the stories you enjoy. not just them as a whole, but why you enjoyed them, what makes you keep coming back and what has you running to Twitterfacetagram to tell everyone you know about it.

Then think about how to apply those to your own acts of creation.

Not just that, but now think about all the works you HATE. Why do you hate them. Why did they fail?

Are you doing any of those things? Are you letting them slide for reasons? Maybe you shouldn't make that sacrifice.

Now think about the stories that did nothing for you. What parts almost got there. What could have been added to push them over the top. What parts bogged it down or reduced your excitement? What parts did you skip?

Are any of those things in your work? Are they there because you think you can get it right, or because you're following someone else's rules? Are they really worth keeping?

Now you're thinking like an entertainer. Not an artist, not a business person. What we're doing here is entertainment--a different animal than a lot of people seem to believe this business is. It requires understanding people and fandoms, what 'works' vs what's done, the why instead of the how.

Signed, someone who recently hit a rich vein of dry, mechanically reproduced books clearly designed to get my money instead of my loyalty.

Writers' Cafe / So Begins the Great Merch Experiment
« on: December 24, 2014, 11:28:11 am »
I have, for a long time, been an advocate for the Webcomic Method when it comes to marketing and selling my books.

For those of you who don't know what that is, a short primer: The webcomic industry is, like ours an independent-driven entertainment medium that has it's roots in the late 90's. A latecomer to the DotCom boom and bust, webcomics are (obviously) comic strips and pages published on a schedule to a website--usually for free.

By the mid 2000's, the business model was set by early works such as Penny Arcade, Megatokyo and Sluggy Freelance and worked like this: The comic itself is free, as is the archive of said comic. It exists as a fandom building device and advertisement for collected versions of the comic as well as a platform to sell ad space.

With the advent of Lulu and Cafepress, many of these sites (especially Megatokyo) also made revenue off of a side T-shirt business. However, the game changed when Penny Arcade and PVP along with the creator's group Teh Good Guys started expanding their merchandise into related fields. Notably, Rich Burlew of Order of the Stick (a roleplaying game universe comic), with the aid of webcomic marketing guru Rob Balder*, has expanded his offerings to a board game, card game and even mniatures for roleplaying games.

While--just like in our industry--there have been only a handful of break-out, 'media empire' successes, others have managed to do well. I myself ran a comic for three years that managed to pay for ts own upkeep and me and my artist partner's con costs.

What does this have to do with self-pubbing?

Webserialization. Webserials for short (though a tad inaccurate). These are text versions of webcomics, posted n a schedule chapter by chapter or story by story. While the infrastructure is still in its infancy (the closest thing we have to webcomic hubs like Keenspot or Drunk Duck is Drew Hayes's new project Starter Serials), the logistics are the same and so is the potential. Actually, there is more potential, as many comic pages don't work so well on mobile devices.

Which brings us to the experiment.

I've been running Descendants Serial for seven years, publishing for three. In that time, I did a cafepress with some logo shirts for my friends, but never promoted it beyond a link on the site.

This year, starting with the Christmas season, my intention is to turn the corner on merchandising following a request for a logo shirt with the new logo from a fan and others joking that there need to be Descendants knock-off merch like in the series proper.

I've already started by introducing two new shirts into my store and will be periodically running tournement-style votes on my site for fans to vote for new ones to come online.

Over the course of the year, I intend to make it bigger, publishing a few RPG splatbooks based on my fantasy series, and getting in touch with people to make the Descendants plushies and D-icons the fans talk about from the story itself.

Just over two weeks in, and I've made ~$10 because cafepress is awful and takes all my monies, but hopefully as I branch out, things will take off. The best art is, merch is, again more advertising for the site and therefore the books/more merch.

Will keep everyone posted on how this goes. I've already proven that the webcomic method can sell midlist level book volume one a shoestring budget (my advertising this year cost me about $60 total--everything else was stuff that happened because of the site), so hopefully following through on the model can pump that up to something a body can live off of instead of just paying rent.

*Disclaimer, I am friendly with both Rich and Rob, but haven't spoken to them in a few years.

Writers' Cafe / Words That Aren't But Should Be
« on: December 11, 2014, 03:38:40 pm »
They can be common typos, or malapropisms, but sometimes a word that isn't a word really ought to be. I'm pretty sure most writers have a few. I'll start:

Aweful - To be inspiring of, or to fill with, awe. As opposed to 'awful'.

Writers' Cafe / Things ALL Sales Channels Need To Work Out
« on: November 26, 2014, 06:12:22 pm »
Thread born of supreme annoyance.

Did you know that no sales channels support sequel series? (not even nearly alliterative ones).

I've been sitting here for several hours trying to figure out a firing solution for this. Obviously, the blurb can say 'sequel to X', but most channels, even Amazon, have a mechanism to alert readers to the next part of a series and listing as a new series basically free-throws that directly into the garbage.

I really, really hate listing it as SERIES Book 5 because it is not Book 5, it is Book 1 and I don't like lying to readers.

What other incredibly obvious things does NO ONE in this business seem to offer?

Writers' Cafe / Title Woes
« on: October 26, 2014, 12:09:21 pm »
For the past year, I've been blowing the horn for the first book in the sequel series to Rune Breaker. The series is called Soul Battery and up until this month, I've been calling the first book City of Bards.

While reviewing some edits though, I realized that the city and the Bards don't show up until the last quarter of the book and that Book 2 is where they are central to the plot. Thus, City of Bards should be Book 2.

So... I don't know what Book 1 should be now. The plot revolves around the MC from Rune Breaker traveling to the formerly titular city, Harpsfell and gathering her old companions from the first book who are now her adoptive family along the way. Meanwhile, we're introduced to the brother she didn't know she had and the climax is her fighting alongside him in a series of bad*ss setpieces with dinosaurs and fire.

So far, I've got a few ideas and reasons to reject them:

Journey to the Bard City - Steps on City of Bards.

Journey to Harpsfell - Not a fan of the 'Journey to...' format anyway.

Children of the Dragon - sort of spoils the brother, but he's in the blurb so...

Children of Agmar - removes cliche 'dragon' from the fantasy title, calls back for tru fans, but still, minor title spoiler.

Agmar's Blood - smells like grimdark and some people were already thinking RB was going to be grimdark...

Return of the Rune Breaker - It's Pele's story, not Ru's... though he is still back.

A Girl and Her World - References Book 1 of RB, References Pele's last line from RB, ties together that her family is her world and that it is expanding... MAKES NO FREAKING SENSE unless you read RB. My current favorite.

Thanks in advance for advice and suggestions.

Writers' Cafe / Sudden Spike in Free on Apple?
« on: October 23, 2014, 01:52:58 pm »
I normally get ~100 free downloads on Apple in one month. I checked D2D today and I had 48 yesterday alone. What went on there? I don't have any promos running, I'm on cooldown until All Saint's Day, so where the heck did all those downloads come from and how do I make that happen again?

Writers' Cafe / A Polite Request Re: Images at the end of posts
« on: September 29, 2014, 01:28:36 pm »
Hey guys.

Look, I understand that we have to market. I understand how disheartening it must be to know that people turn off sigs and thus don't see your finely crafted sig full of marketing--I have a sig full of marketing too.

However, some people have a very good reason for having sigs off and it's not just because they're at work and would prefer not to explain all the topless dudes on their screen.

I, like 30% of Americans, live in a part of the country where high speed internet simply is not a thing. I can't get it. It's not a question of affording it; it just ain't happening, dig? Because of this, images loading slows down everything I do, especially forum-based images that usually don't fully load to the cache before I move on an ths try to load EVERY time I open a thread.

In order to surf faster and easier, I turned off sigs because otherwise, surfing Kboards would take ten thousand years. And it worked out pretty well... until about a week ago when a bunch of people just started appending images directly to the end of every post they make, presumably to bypass sig blocking.

Please understand that this isn't just an annoyance, it is an actual hindrance when several people doing this post to a thread at once. People turn of sigs for very good reasons and it's pretty uncool to disrespect that choice.

I just saw on twitter that my favorite Fantasy author, Brandon Sanderson has made his Way of Kings, Book 1 of what he's more or less called his Magnum Opus, The Stormlight Archive, free on iTunes and Amazon today.

More interesting to me is just how much content this means he's giving way. If you're not familiar with Sanderson or The Way of Kings, TWoK is his love letter to the old school fantasy door-stopper, a book so larger that I'm fairly sure I could kill a man with the paperback.

Writers' Cafe / What the... France? Sweet, but random.
« on: September 19, 2014, 12:56:39 pm »
So I'm in my third year publishing and I have never NEVER sold anything in France. I haven't even given anything away there, even back with Select Free making it stuff free to all the non-US domains.

But all of a sudden, I check my graph today and I've sold like a handful of books there. Multiple copies, which means more than one person there up and decided to pick them up on the same day. They even paid for the (nominal) permafree. Incredibly cool, but incredibly weird.

I've been Googling around trying to figure out what caused that to make it happen more, but nothing's come up yet. It's a mystery to everyone.

Writers' Cafe / UK Royalties and the Conversion rate
« on: September 18, 2014, 01:07:37 pm »
So if you've been watching the news, you might have noticed that William Wallace's demands might well be met soon and Scotland will have Freeeeeeeeeedooooom. Or, you know, sovereignty.

Either way, and politics aside, a vote for independence will free throw the UK's pound sterling  directly into the toilet at least for a while.

Why does this matter to non-UK authors? Well that's my question: are our UK sales royalties converted at point of sale or at time of payment? I made a nice chunk of change in July there and it will be a much smaller chunk if the latter is true or the former.

Writers' Cafe / No seriously, the book is free, Amazon. F-R-E-E.
« on: September 18, 2014, 12:05:08 pm »
I know all about the why of this, but it still annoys me.

This will be the third month in a row where someone in one of those countries without their own domains went to get one of my permafree books and had to pay because apparently everyone living outside the US is so rich that they can afford to pay for free things.

Not that I don't adore the extra 35 cents, but I don't get what's so difficult about the whole 'I do not want customer to have to pay for this' thing. And also, all my German readers are saying they can't even report lower prices form their site. If people tell me that, I give them a free book, but I don't even know the people who buy the not-free book, so I can't do that for them.

Yeah yeah, it's only 99 cents and they chose to pay it, but damn, I feel like I'm screwing them every time it happens. I'm not an artist, or a businessman, I'm a showman, an entertainer; my creed has always been to give the people exactly what they promised and even with it out of my control, I feel like this is breaking it.

Writers' Cafe / Would you pay for a blurb writing service?
« on: August 22, 2014, 02:30:34 pm »
A lot of writers here seem to either hate writing blurbs, or at least find writing them difficult.

I'm not one of those people. I like writing blurbs, mostly because I've got a lot of Barnum brand snakeoil in my blood and busking like a carnival barker is fun for me.

I've done a few blurbs for members here for publicity/ a free book / delicious baked goods, and I've gotten the process down pretty well even on my murderous 'write 6 projects at a time' schedule.

What I'm wondering is if people here would be willing to part with a few dollah dollah bills to turn their end of the blurb writing experience into 'Fill out form/Review Blurb/Ask For Refinements/Approve Blurb'.

And in the spirit of advertising...

Friends, do you feel that your talents are wasted condensing your 60,000 word novel into a 200 word teaser? Is the balancing act of hooking the reader without giving away too much getting you down? Will having to fill out one more Product Description form on a sales channel going to make you snap?

Then you need Uncle Vaal's Fantastical Auto-mo-Blurb. With this handy, dandy service, all you have to do is follow a simple set of instructions and a fully written blurb will appear before your eyes in a matter of days, pending your approval! You get to pick the tone and focus, and the Auto-mo-Blurb system does the rest! It's like a written trailer for your book!

Special features include: Tailored theming for series, optional properly formatted and presented content warnings, Pay nothing until the blurb is done to your specifications! Taglines and special 50-word descriptions for promo sites available. This service is available for erotica, but not for any work in any genre featuring child abuse, torture/gore porn or rape (sorry, but I have to read a synopsis from you to do my thing and... I don't want to read that stuff). Ask about our special rate of Speculative Fiction and even better rates for the following subgenres: Superhero, Steampunk, Weird West, Gaslamp Fantasy and Dungeonpunk.

[[Note: this is not me hanging out a shingle just yet. I'm trying to feel out demand and what I should charge. I feel I can handle ~3 blurbs a week except on 5th Wednesdays.]]

Writers' Cafe / [Draft2Digital] Am I reading my July BN report right?
« on: August 21, 2014, 01:55:30 pm »
...because it says BN is now paying one month after reporting final numbers instead of two like it says on my June Report for BN.

Does this mean I'm going to get paid for both June and July in September?

Writers' Cafe / The Lastest Bad Promotions Tactic: Actual Spam
« on: August 09, 2014, 01:16:20 pm »
So for the past week or so, the site's been getting hammered by spambots. This is to be expected because how else would my readers of Superhero and Fantasy ficiton know about fake Ray Ban sunglasses, Ugg boots, and something called Canada Goose?

This week has been different though. The rush seems to be all from a small set of almost certainly botnetted IPs and they all follow an oddly specific pattern: the body is an excerpt from something that looks like a story and the username is an Amazon book link. I checked, and the links go to actual books. Precisely the kind of books you would expect to be sold via spam or the finest supermakret checkout counters in fact.

So yeah, there's a new, exciting arena out there for Bad Behavior beyond buying reviews, constant self-promotion where it isn't appreciated, and paying for fake likes. Welcome to the Age of Spam >_<

Writers' Cafe / Dear Apple, [AKA, If You Want to See ACTUAL Hate...]
« on: August 02, 2014, 06:11:35 pm »
Dear Apple.

I am attempting to run a business here and incidentally, my attempts to run a business include paying you a commission on every books I sell in your store.

Now, as an entertainer, my business doesn't lie in customer service or speedy delivery, or bells and whistles. It replies on a fandom of people from all over the world who wish to pay me money so I can tell them stories.

He's a thing about a fandom: they like what they like and want what they want. And they are often upset at being left out. And despite my constant and plentiful mockery of you, your business practices and your worrying tendency to think everything should be shaped like decorative bath soaps, many of my fans are also users of your products.

In short, they would like to purchase my words on your platform. This should be a good thing and you should be alert and attentive when I tell you I have a new thing for them to buy on said commission-generating platform.

The problem is that you are not.

In order to ensure that I am able to have my work available for purchase when I link it on my Friday blog, I enter everything but Amazon the Tuesday before. This way, I am certain that there will be a minimal amount of time where my works are available to some of my readers, but not for others.

Two Weeks. Two weeks IN A ROW, you have been the sole platform to completely and utterly fail at complying with this scheme. Two weeks also seems to be how long it takes you to actually publish a book.

The troubling thing is, I KNOW why you do this. It's because you alone feel the need to go over every book with a fine-toothed comb to make sure nothing within the books are linking anywhere that might show the people in your walled garden that there are places outside your walled garden. You are a jealous beast and don't care how much damage you do to yourself and others in answering to the call of your green-eyed monster.

And so, for the second time and two weeks, I have my Apple readers asking me why my books are out everywhere but Google and iTunes (answer: because Google's site is awful and locked up on me).

No more. I can't actually sever my relationship with you at this time, but I can alter how I direct people to buy my books. Pray I do not alter it any further.

Effective at midnight Monday morning, I will be putting a notice on al new releases while Apple publishing is pending, directing Apple users to buy my books as EPUBs from DriveThruFiction and a link to a tutorial on how to load them into thier iBooks application of choice.

I sincerely hope this denies you a significant portion of my portion of your ebook commissions because honestly, you pushed me to this. Get on the ball.

Writers' Cafe / [Craft] The Worst Part of Foreshadowing...
« on: July 06, 2014, 08:19:13 pm »
... is never knowing when people are going to figure out what's coming.

And hoo boy, did I miscalculate.


So I'm in the middle of the big two-part reveal I started setting up three years and 1.5 million words ago in my web serial. This is the kind of Chris Claremont crap I started writing serial fiction to pull.

Basically, in the stinger of a one-off story, I introduced a 'juvenile' monster. The description clearly says it's a dragon, but no one calls it one. The creature doens't recur, but a year later, genetic material is used to transform a pair of characters in half-dragon looking supervillains. The genre-savvy big bad actively called them Beowulf and Maleficent. They recur twice, but I sink them for six months prior to the Big Reveal.

Meanwhile the Big Bad has been trying to invade the magical world and going to war with the natives.

Finally, #78 starts rolling out chapter by chapter. In chapter 1, something big and mean takes out an entire installation run by the big bad. In Chapter 2, we learn that it looks like and the main characters liken it to a dragon. In Chapter 3, we learn it's trying to communicate...

And my readers then hurl themselves bodily into the comment section chorusing 'I BET IT'S AFTER THE BABY FROM VOLUME 4!'

...And I immediately begin crying because there's seriously a whole extra chapter of foreshadowing before the reveal that literally everyone guessed.


So basically, this is a thread for posting your EPIC FAILS and EPIC WINS in the field of foreshadowing.

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