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Writers' Cafe / Fan mail from inmates in prison
« on: March 20, 2019, 10:16:14 am »
As my books have gotten more popular, reading and responding to mail has become pretty much a daily task.

I've even started to get occasional emails from correctional facilities asking me if I'd like to accept email from XYZ with the person's name, etc. The first time I got one, I just kind of ignored it, thinking it was a one-off exception and I probably wouldn't see something like that again, but I've gotten a few more of these emails from inmates requesting to contact me.

I'm pretty sure my books have just made it into prisons somewhere, and people want to write fan letters, so it's probably harmless. But another part of me is a little paranoid about someone in prison emailing me. Maybe I fear that they would start stalking me or come after me after they are out of jail? Gosh, that sounds so silly, and if I were in their situation, I would hate to be judged like that. I don't want to make assumptions.

My question is... Has anyone else gotten email from prisoners or from prisons asking if you want to allow inmates to contact you? Have you engaged with people have read your books from prison, and if so, how did it go?

Writers' Cafe / Tell me about yourself?/Your Background? Messages
« on: March 14, 2019, 02:35:20 am »
Over the last year, every month or so, I've been getting messages on my social media from random people asking "Can you tell me about yourself?" and/or "Can you tell me about your background?"

At first I thought it was interesting and I just wrote a few sentences about myself, but by the 3rd message, I got suspicious. I mean... I wrote a little bit about myself in some of my books already and I have a short bio on Amazon. But then... maybe they are listening to my audiobooks or something? What more did they want to know?

But now I've gotten similar messages from people at least a dozen times asking about my background or to tell them about myself. They don't ask anything specific, and when I ask them if they want to know anything specific, most of them don't reply.

Am I the only one getting these messages? I can't figure out what or why people want to know about me, and I'm a little paranoid that it's some sort of data fishing, even though the people sending these messages look like normal people on their profiles.

Writers' Cafe / ACX Jan Payment?
« on: March 01, 2019, 02:09:01 pm »
Anyone else missing theirs?

When I ask ACX about pre-orders, no matter how I word the question:

"How can I get my book on Audible for pre-order?"

"How do other authors get their book available on audible for preorder?"

etc., etc....

Basically, ACX just sends me a canned response telling me that they do not accept preorders for audiobooks. But obviously I am seeing preorders on audible from both big name authors and indie authors alike. How exactly are they doing it? Do they use another system other than ACX?

Writers' Cafe / Using "there's" when referring to multiple objects
« on: March 02, 2017, 06:13:42 am »
Do you use "there's" for "there are"?

For example:
"There are rules that must be followed."
"There's rules that must be followed."

"There are towels in the cabinet."
"There's towels in the cabinet."

Technically, I think this is wrong, but in normal speech, this is very common, and I see "there's" written often in place of "there are". It doesn't bother me at all... Given how often I hear people say it when they're speaking, it might as well just become the official abbreviation of "there are".

Word doesn't correct me when I type "there're", so maybe that is the right abbreviation... But I don't remember seeing that anywhere, and it looks a bit awkward.

What are your thoughts? A no-no, acceptable, or common enough in speech that it gets a full pass?

Writers' Cafe / A New Pen Name, A New Genre. Gauging Success?
« on: December 07, 2016, 06:03:53 am »
This is for those of us who have multiple pen names and dabble in new genres.

It's your first book on a new pen name, and it's a totally new genre for you. You have 0 mail list subscribers and no following. You launch the book and do your best to promote it, cold.

They say that you shouldn't keep writing what doesn't sell, but how do you gauge success/failure on this completely new pen?

For example:

1. Book has to take off right away. If sales don't pour in, you move on to something else.

2. Write more... 1 book means nothing. Write 2 or 3 more books under the same pen/genre before you make an assessment.

3. Never give up. Throw more money at it if it doesn't sell. Fight for every sale on the first book. Write 5 or 6 more books under that pen if needed and never abandon the genre.

4. If book 1 doesn't take off, step back and ask why. You must have done something wrong. Try again..... If 2nd attempt fails, move on.

So how do you assess your results/success on the first book written on a new pen in a totally new genre? When do you walk away?

Writers' Cafe / New Pen, Totally New Genre- How to get beta readers?
« on: July 26, 2015, 09:03:36 am »
I'm a Romance convert and have quite a large following for my Romance pen name. I've decided to try my hand at a new genre, and I'm about to finish up my first Sci-Fi book.

So now I'm at the point where I need a few beta readers. Problem is, this will be a new pen name with no back catalog and my Romance followers aren't going to have any interest in this type of book.

Is there any good way to get beta readers for a completely new pen? What have you done in the past to get a few seeds for your first book?

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