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Messages - Just Browsing

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Writers' Cafe / Re: Is everyone ok on kboards?
« on: October 24, 2015, 11:09:38 am »
I know some people didn't see Buckley's "How to get a drugged Asian prostitute" book. (Although that's a question too--why not? It was referenced quite a few times. The only direct response I remember seeing was people telling him to take it down or at least change the cover--a man sliding his hand up the thigh of a young drugged girl passed out on a bed--so that he could get more money for his fundraising campaign.)

Strangely, that wasn't even what I was complaining about. Let's imagine for a moment that book didn't exist. It did, and it still does, but that's a separate issue. Let's imagine that only his other books existed. I would like to know why people--many, many people here on Kboards--kept encouraging him to write more, change keywords, adjust his covers, try advertising, etc. And almost no one told him he couldn't write. If anyone ever tried to, it seemed those comments got moderated away or protested by people saying that everything was somebody's cup of tea, you couldn't criticize anyone else's writing, this Pulitzer winner got one-star reviews so never mind about his, etc.

See, that was my breaking point--when the forum as a whole declared that no writing is ever bad. Are there disagreements over what makes fine prose? Well, of course. I just don't see the logical extension of that being "and therefore no writing is ever bad, and therefore must never be discussed."

Is there really no harm in telling someone with craptastic writing that their works are good and to keep going? I don't think so. I think there is definite harm. I think you're asking them to invest time, energy, caring, and above all hope that they might get some reward, when you know they won't. This was a man desperate for money. "Go home and get on social services," that was sensible advice. "Just keep on trying, man! Why don't you try a romance next?", that was abusively cruel. And if people say, "Oh, well, I never looked at his books, I just gave the standard advice," I wonder why. If someone says their book isn't selling, wouldn't the FIRST thing you'd do be to look at the book? Rather than to never look at the book? If I say my dog isn't well, do you automatically say, "Oh, give him B-12 injections", or do you ask to look at the dog? Because if his leg is broken, vitamins aren't what he needs right now.

Well, some people did look at his books. Some people from Kboards bought them. Some gave him 5-star reviews (that are still up, names attached...). A Kboarder designed his Christmas book cover. A Kboarder gave it a 5-star review (its only other review is a 1-star). Go ahead. Check the Look Inside. Really? That's a question of people liking different cups of tea? That's not someone with serious grammatical and story arc issues who needs a ghostwriter? But he wasn't told that. He was told he had a unique voice and to keep going. Someone bought him a Damonza cover. Check the look inside of that one. Check all three volumes, since Kboards told him to make it a series and release quickly, because everyone knows series do well. Check the Cave In series he wrote when he was told romance sells.

I get being kind; I get helping out; I get paying back. But lying to people about their chances is just cruel. I don't get that. I don't get building people up so that their dreams can be crushed (especially when they're in desperate financial straits). Buckley was the most extreme example; but he also wasn't the only one.

There are great people and great writers on Kboards--there most definitely are (many of whom also post, of course, in closed places elsewhere). There are smart, successful, funny, engaged people on Kboards, many in this very thread. If most people are happy in a particular environment and I am not, the 'solution' is not for me to rail about wanting changes; the solution is for me to go and find myself a compatible place, and I have. I am not asking for a single change to Kboards or the way it is run.

I guess I just felt like saying it isn't true that people who don't post as much (or at all) are all "too busy." And to ask, because I never did at the time, why people encouraged someone who couldn't write to write more. Well, not to write more--to publish and offer works for sale more. I don't expect an answer, but I couldn't help asking.

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Writers' Cafe / Re: Is everyone ok on kboards?
« on: October 22, 2015, 09:32:25 pm »
If three or four people are trying to have a serious conversation about making a go at bear-shifter books, and three or four other people are popping into the thread and making fun of them, serious conversation quickly becomes impossible. But if thirty people are having a serious conversation about making a go at bear-shifter books, and three or four people are popping in to make fun of them, the fun-makers at worst become an annoying side-conversation and, at best, start feeling out of place and leave the thread. It's a question of where the weight of the forum's membership lies.

True. But 30 people having a serious conversation about bear-shifter books and NO people popping in to make fun of them seems even more efficient.

When people feel unwelcome, they leave. When people feel it's not a good use of their time, they leave.

Someone asked what the answer is to needing ad revenue so badly you have to kick off the erotica and erotic romance writers, and then pointed out that closed Facebook groups don't need that ad revenue.

Well, exactly. You can pretty easily make a closed Facebook group out of only the people you invite, whatever level of experience that may be. You want newbies? Then you invite newbies. You want only experienced people? You invite just them. You want a mix? You pick a mix. You want a limited number of people? You set a cap. If people are happy posting here, then by all means, they should stay here! But if it's not meeting their needs, there are other ways to form groups that would fill that gap.

Annie is right in saying that plenty of people explained exactly why they left; others just quietly left. But it's not really the case that "everyone is too busy to post," and a bit disingenuous to keep saying so. They're posting--just in other places. I wanted a place where books I'm connected to don't get one-starred if I voice my opinion. I don't care if people disagree; I just don't appreciate the retaliation. For me, it's also not helpful to post in a place where every piece of advice is considered equally valid. If everybody's opinion is right and yet nobody's opinion is worth anything to anyone other than him/herself, then why discuss? I wanted a place where I could ask a question and get solid answers from people who had reason to know, and who could explain how it was that they knew (and who expected the same from me).

A final straw for me was people here constantly urging those with really, really, really weak books to keep writing, because they had a unique voice and a story to tell and to never give up and just publish more, etc. I mean people who were borderline illiterate. Someone would hesitantly say, oh, uh, looks like every other word is misspelled and your sentences make no sense, perhaps that's an issue? And there would be a pile-on of "Just because it's not YOUR cup of tea doesn't mean you can say the writing's not good" etc. I found it unbelievably cruel, not to mention perplexing. Russell Blake's writing got ripped to shreds because he used adjectives to describe a sunset. Someone who posted a book with a practically pedophilic cover image, explaining how much to pay Asian prostitutes and how they were easier to get if they were drug addicts--that got a GoFundMe. The only thing I could think was that people somehow thought propping up really bad books would make their own look better in comparison, or something. Every forum has its flavor, and this was clearly not mine. Even though I was "not family friendly." Or maybe because.

I made some good contacts here, and I'm glad of that; but I'm happier interacting with them in a safer place. Did the forum change? Oh, I don't know. Sometimes it feels like online environments or groups change when really, it's just yourself who has shifted. Perhaps those same problems were already there when I came, and I just never noticed them.

As I said--if people are happy here, they shouldn't let people who have left for more compatible places make them feel bad about that, not at all! If it's meeting your needs, there's no need to justify that. But if people are not happy, I would recommend looking for or setting up another sort of group. Think about what you want, and what it would take to attract the kinds of people you want, and set about that. And you can be in other groups and still post here, if you want both.

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Writers' Cafe / Re: Tightening up our "Family Friendly" rules on KBoards
« on: October 29, 2014, 11:54:36 pm »
Ah... so guns are OK, but a "provocative pose," even clothed, is not? Like my (former) avatar? I'm actually more disheartened by all the people chiming in to say that we've been bringing the tone of the place down, ruining the experience for decent folk. I'm quite used to images upsetting people (I work a lot in the Middle East), but ... I had formerly considered this a more open place. Amazon shows our covers; are parents of young children wanting Kboards to be more closed than Amazon? Why not just monitor what your kids' access? I did.

But in any case, I get the message, loud and clear.

I haven't disabled my account, so if anyone would like to stay in touch, send me a PM.

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Writers' Cafe / Erotica labels: adult, not adult, "none"
« on: October 24, 2014, 11:08:11 pm »
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Writers' Cafe / RIP Zilpha Keatley Snyder
« on: October 22, 2014, 02:34:10 am »
She was one of the authors that I followed as a child--meaning that I deliberately sought out everything she'd ever written. Even then, one thing I especially liked about her was that she did NOT write series (and I say that even as someone who also read every Black Stallion book ever penned). In fact, when she did eventually write a sequel to The Egypt Game, I hated it. ;)

From her obituary linked below:

She modeled her characters in "The Egypt Game" on some of her students at Washington School but turned down the book's transformation into a movie. "Disney wanted to option it for a film but wouldn't guarantee a multiracial cast," her longtime editor Karen Wojytla said in an interview. "She was very forward-thinking, and wouldn't sell them the rights."


http://www.latimes.com/local/obituaries/la-me-zilpha-keatley-snyder-20141019-story.html

One of the authors who made a lifelong Reader out of me.

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Writers' Cafe / Re: pre-order and reviews
« on: October 21, 2014, 11:30:35 am »
Some people can. If you have an Amazon rep, they can enable that for you. I think you can also set up your Createspace paperback and append reviews to that. I don't know if you can put it up and then unpublish it, though, and still get reviews on it?

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But the author isn't going to take the criticism lying down and begins to stalk the blogger, which is in reality themselves...


It would be pretty efficient stalking, at least. No need for a long commute ...

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Writers' Cafe / Re: Past perfect in fiction
« on: October 13, 2014, 01:05:34 pm »
I know what it's used for, and I know how to use it. And, yes, what you're writing can have an effect on how you write things. For instance, in a formal paper, you would never begin a sentence with a conjunction, but you can do it in fiction. See what I mean?

I was told that past perfect isn't alway necessary in fiction for its usual purpose. I'm just bouncing the concept off the people in the forum to (1) see who has heard of this before and (2) see if anybody practices it.

Well, I use it all the time in fiction. As necessary. So that's my vote. Use it when the sequencing of past actions requires it, and don't use it when it's not called for. Personally, I wouldn't give up any tool in my box, ever. Grammar conveys meaning. I suppose you could configure a story in such a way that you lose some subtlety, although I can't imagine wanting to. If your whole novel is in present tense, the past perfect would probably come up rarely. So there's that.

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Writers' Cafe / Re: Past perfect in fiction
« on: October 13, 2014, 12:52:03 pm »
? I can't wrap my head around your question. The past perfect is a tense (time) with a unique meaning. You would use it when you need to use it, and not when you don't. It has nothing to do with fiction or non-fiction--it has to do with chronology and the ordering of actions/sequencing in the past. It's not something optional or desired/undesired. Its usage is determined by the meaning of what you are trying to say.

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Writers' Cafe / .
« on: October 10, 2014, 12:01:06 am »
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Writers' Cafe / Re: Lets be blunt then...why are my sales so crap?
« on: October 09, 2014, 06:09:52 pm »
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Writers' Cafe / Re: Opinions on these covers, please
« on: October 08, 2014, 08:17:46 pm »
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Writers' Cafe / Re: Createspace with Draft2Digital vs going direct
« on: October 08, 2014, 11:53:24 am »
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Writers' Cafe / .
« on: October 08, 2014, 09:39:59 am »
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Writers' Cafe / .
« on: October 05, 2014, 11:31:04 pm »
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Writers' Cafe / Re: Time to junk one-star review category?
« on: October 05, 2014, 10:51:20 pm »
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Writers' Cafe / .
« on: October 05, 2014, 06:45:32 pm »
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Writers' Cafe / Re: Amazon drops price on my print book?
« on: October 03, 2014, 11:35:08 am »
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Writers' Cafe / Re: What do you call yourself when people ask?
« on: October 02, 2014, 09:54:14 am »
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Writers' Cafe / Re: What do you call yourself when people ask?
« on: October 02, 2014, 09:48:09 am »

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Writers' Cafe / Re: What do you call yourself when people ask?
« on: October 02, 2014, 09:38:55 am »
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