Register a SA Forums Account here!
JOINING THE SA FORUMS WILL REMOVE THIS BIG AD, THE ANNOYING UNDERLINED ADS, AND STUPID INTERSTITIAL ADS!!!

You can: log in, read the tech support FAQ, or request your lost password. This dumb message (and those ads) will appear on every screen until you register! Get rid of this crap by registering your own SA Forums Account and joining roughly 150,000 Goons, for the one-time price of $9.95! We charge money because it costs us money per month for bills, and since we don't believe in showing ads to our users, we try to make the money back through forum registrations.
 
  • Post
  • Reply
DukeRustfield
Aug 6, 2004


I came in to check and saw my name taken in vain on the first post so I thought I would drop my one cent and some updates.

Here is my webpage with my covers on them:
http://wwww.belvaille.com

I highly recommend getting your art via comparison shopping at like deviantART or conceptart.org or comicartcommissions.com. You can see their portfolios and whether or not you'd think it would match your work and often their rates. Or you can go to the forums and post a job. Sadly, the costs for overseas artists is WAAAAAAY less than US. I've never had any trouble except with US artists and that wasn't even much. I hired one guy who couldn't even be found by Google maps.

For editors, I recommend:

http://www.the-efa.org/

Though the list is usually pricey.

For the love of gently caress, please edit. I just finished my new novel a week ago and I will re-read the ending chapters for about a week (most recently finished, so less edited). Then I will go to Las Vegas for 7 days, check myself into a hotel where all my worldly concerns are taken care of, I will close the shades, bring four novels to read that aren't mine, and I will read and edit my book over and over and over. When I get too brain dead to continue, I will go downstairs and mindlessly put coins in a slot machine (as if anything accepts coins anymore). Go see some shows. Get stupified by lights and drunk people. Then go back upstairs to my sensory deprivation chamber and continue. The city is 24/7 so I will sleep when I want, eat when I want, wander around aimlessly. I'm in a 5 star hotel for about 1/3 the price of a real city. I've been doing this for years and years and it's super helpful. When I've done that editing, I'll incorporate them into the book, send them off to my copy editor for two weeks, get those edits back, edit it again, send it off to my proofreader, get those edits back, edit again. Then hopefully publish. I COULD publish today. Like right now instead of typing this. But I'm spending more than a month editing and thousands of dollars because I want a good product.


Audiobooks. Audiobooks are the poo poo. I was surprised how much moolah you can make from ebooks, but a lot of people like listening to books. I half-heartedly put my first book on audio and it makes money. I don't (can't) set the price, ACX does.

http://www.audible.com/pd/Sci-Fi-Fantasy/Hard-Luck-Hank-Audiobook/B00KYXRVKA/

My second book is in production now. I contract with a producer, who takes a %. I basically do nothing (yay!). How much is it worth? You can apparently contact ACX aka Audible aka Amazon to have them give you a stipend to create your book. A stipend helps offset the costs associated with making it. I don't get it, the producer and voice actor(s) get it. But this is the email they sent me.

quote:

Congratulations Steven Campbell (Self-Employed)!

We’ve made the title noted below eligible for a $100 per-finished-hour production stipend, paid for by Audible. You, along with narrators and producers searching for titles, will now see a green banner indicating this on the title’s profile page*. Please be sure to review the basics of the stipend offer when considering the production timeline. Titles must be fully completed and approved (by you) within 60 days of the producer’s acceptance of the offer, so please keep this in mind when making offers to producers.

The book is over 9 hours of audio, so Amazon is coughing up $900 just for me to put out my audio book. So they see the value in getting royalties from it. Which isn't to say I'm awesome, it's to say there's money in audiobooks.

I'm not rich. I'm not close to rich. No one wants to date me on Tinder. But I'm enjoying what I'm doing. My books lose popularity with time so I need to keep writing. For those of you thinking of writing romance or this or that because "they sell," you're missing the point of writing. I was a senior computer programmer and made more money doing that. But I was a senior computer programmer. However, I'd far rather do that than write a genre I disliked. It will also show in your writing that you're torturing yourself. Get a hair shirt if you want to atone for your sins, but write what you love writing. It's hard writing, so at least make it fun.

Adbot
ADBOT LOVES YOU

DukeRustfield
Aug 6, 2004


ACX is Amazon. Same company (Amazon bought them some while ago). The benefit of having it go through them is if you go to your Amazon book, you can have print, ebook, audio all right there as choices.

I'm not entirely happy with audio split. But storing and presenting an ebook, which is maybe 1/100th the size of the audio can't be compared readily. Think of all those free ebooks that have 0 sales and then think of them as 9 hours of audio with 0 sales and no ad revenue on the site. That's like a gajillion gajillabytes of audio doing nothing. As for promotion, it's not their job, nor was it ever, to promote your work. It is another revenue stream that costs you:

$0.00

(If you get a producer.) I did the hard part and wrote a book. That becomes a script they use. Your mileage may vary, as with everything in life, but if you're getting sales on your book, it's likely you will also get audio sales. If you're not getting sales, I would suspect you won't get many audio.

As for discounting, the prices are pretty high IMHO. If they ever offer a sale or somesuch, you'll still get your share from the full price. But Amazon proper also price controls for ebooks. If you price outside the $2.99-$9.99 price range, you have your royalties cut in HALF. That's a big deal. I wanted to put my smaller works for less than $2.99, but at 35% royalties, it's simply not worth it. And I wanted to combine some of my bigger books into a collection, but then it caps out as well. Because we get per-use fees for borrows, it makes it more viable to have lots of works at whatever price.

So far, I've had good experiences with Amazon. I had a technical issue a few days ago and they took care of it immediately and you could really tell they had experienced people who understood what I was saying. Competition is good, however.

DukeRustfield
Aug 6, 2004


quote:

I don't disagree with this statement or any that follow it really, but there's a big difference between KDP's "We're offering incentives for you to price in this area and we reserve the right to price match if you go lower on another retailer" and ACX's "We'll price however we please and gently caress you if you think otherwise."
"Incentive" is a pretty cutesy term for price-fixing, which it de facto is. Cutting royalties in half is gigantic if you're trying to make a living at this.

I never would have priced my book as high as ACX did. I was rather shocked to see it's cost.

A lot of the terms seem daunting. The 7 years. The % split. If you're paying for a producer, I can see being worried about all that. However, if you were going through a traditional publisher, this stuff would be far more draconian.

There are people out there looking for % deals and it's not >amazingly< hard to get auditions. As soon as I got flagged for stipend, I had to let everyone know I had my producer already set, because I was getting flooded with auditions and I felt bad about people spending the time to read my stupid book fragment and upload it.

Again, it may not work for everyone, but it was an easy and free revenue stream that is surprisingly popular.

DukeRustfield
Aug 6, 2004


Use Amazon to search! You see the general detail level and style. Of course you don't have to do that, but you got a handy reference of all the top books in your categories.

DukeRustfield
Aug 6, 2004


Some advice, when making covers, look at the full size cover. Maybe a poster-sized cover if you want to go that route. An amazon-sized cover. And dinky little covers. Some covers simply turn to poo poo at small thumbnail (think Goodreads, 50x75) sizes. Also, if you plan on going audio book, they are required to be square (1x1) and not stretched. Like CD-cover format. So having some extra real estate at the top and bottom will allow you to chop them up. Keep your titles and name on different layers so you can move them around or blank them out if you want to later.

I think I mentioned this before, but just in case I didn't, I use my own programs to email people and get fan mail and opt ins. Most major email providers have an API you can use. If someone submits a form on my website it comes to one of my inboxes and if it doesn't pass the right rules (to get out bots at least) it's sent to trash. I can then run a program and pull all the email addresses for a mailing. Or the fan mail goes to my email and I can reply--not like I have so much I'm overwhelmed. Besides, people seem to be pretty happy when I respond in person and it doesn't go through FuckOff@no-reply.com

DukeRustfield
Aug 6, 2004


moana posted:

Usually, if you have a hard time finding a product, it means the market for the product isn't there.
I'm going to disagree with this. While you might be correct statistically, basically you're saying always be a follower. There are break-out products in every field. You can't say, "oh, there's never been an iPhone before so there is clearly no market for phones with the computing power of a PC." Or there's never been a 50 Shades (or at least not a big market). One of the reasons products can explode is precisely because it's a new market. Write the Generation Next Religious Memoir of Financial Accounting. It'll sell a million.

DukeRustfield
Aug 6, 2004


Well, I guess it depends on what you're shooting for. I will say it works quite well as a business plan in nearly any business. If you apply to a company, let's say Google, and tell them, "I just do what everyone else does," you won't get the job. If you tell your prospective agent, "I just want to make C+ grade work," s/he is likely not going to be interested.

There's a huge gulf between making carbon copy poo poo and being an A#1 blockbuster overlord.

This reminds me of an old article from Ted Elliot and Terry Rossio (Pirates of the Caribbean, Shrek, et al).

http://www.wordplayer.com/columns/wp06.Crap-plus-One.html

DukeRustfield
Aug 6, 2004


quote:

Is there an audience for sci-fi romance? No, not really. It's very, very small, so even if I do it well, the odds of it being even a moderate commercial success are incalculably small, no matter how great the book is.

I could turn around and say "Hey, let's break the mold and write a sci-fi romance anyway!" and that'd be just fine as long as I also acknowledged that it would most likely be a commercial failure.
If you love the poo poo out of sci-fi romance and your heart is aching to do it, I'd say it has at least as good a chance of being successful as a normal bodice-ripper that doesn't break any molds and your heart isn't completely in. I find it a little disconcerting that everyone seems to be on board with this concept. Writing is a painful, brutal process. I can't imagine trying to write something that I wasn't 100% into or passionate about.

And saying definitively "no matter how great the book is" is awful certain. You have no clue what would happen. No one does.

I was a computer programmer for 15-20 years. And I worked fortune 50 for most of that. No one wants to hear that you're just one of the crowd. Not in Accounting. Not in Human Resources. Not in Information Security. I never remotely heard that play work. People want to think they're getting quality a step above.

If you're cranking out books of [level x] which is beneath you, I feel you're hurting yourself as a writer, hurting your name (or at the least not growing your potential break-out name), and making yourself if not miserable, then not as happy as you could be.

quote:

Those are matters of branding, not actual production. You're free to bill yourself as whatever, but you write to market.
No, you don't. I mean, you can. But you're going to have a better time making your own market. I'm not talking about an entire genre of book. But like someone mentioned above, horror comedy. I wrote a horror comedy screenplay years and years ago and it placed as a semifinalist or finalist in the Nicholl Fellowship and got a lot of traction--though went nowhere ultimately. Still, one of the reasons it got attention was because it was different.

Think of all the medium successful bands. Not even the superstars. They got something that's different. Even if it's just being an all girl band playing metal wearing pixie clothes. But usually it's sound. I was just looking through upcoming concerts a bit ago and all these bands that hung around for decades they weren't the same. They aren't Generic Rocker Band 343.

DukeRustfield
Aug 6, 2004


magnificent7 posted:

Have any of you had experience with publishing your books in audio format? On Audible, for example?
Well, ACX/Audible recently made their payments crappier, so that sucks. I have one book out and another submitted now. Apparently a lot of people like audio books. In may case, vastly more people like audio than paperback. I think that's just the way of the world now.

If you can, try and look up getting a stipend. Amazon will pay the producer $100 (for instance) for every hour of the work. This helps defray costs of production and makes your book a lot more popular in terms of attracting producers/narrators. I mean, they basically are working for a fee up front and royalties in the back. It's win/win. Though as the author you get nothing.

And people will buy the ebook to get a discount on the audio. At least from what people tell me. I only have one book up, however.

http://www.audible.com/pd/Sci-Fi-Fantasy/Hard-Luck-Hank-Audiobook/B00KYXRVKA/

DukeRustfield
Aug 6, 2004


quote:

Random people with really small goals that just barely get funded, probably due in large part to friends / family.
That was me. KS was pretty new. Still is pretty new. But I got really disillusioned dealing with it.

When I had my project up, it was literally impossible to search for it unless you knew its name. I sat there trying to find it just by normal exploration and couldn't find it for the vast majority of its lifecycle. You could find old projects that had expired and failed before you found mine. And like...pretty much anything, the more popular are, the more it is boosted. I.e., the less popular and newer you are, the more you are buried.

So, as stated, if you have enough social media to get people to boost your work, you could probably just send them to your webpage and use Ebay or PayPal or Amazon or whatever. Or tell them to just mail you a check. I read an article on it and they kind of likened it to begging your friends and family for money without the ugly stigma.

The venture capital ones get the spotlight where they raise a million bucks. But those are insanely rare. Then there was just the hassle. I had to sign a bunch of books and posters and box and mail them.

My goal, the real reason I was doing it, was to hopefully use KS as extra advertising. It was a whole other populated and popular web site where my name and work would appear. The fact you couldn't find it made the entire reason I was doing it a waste.

DukeRustfield
Aug 6, 2004


SurreptitiousMuffin posted:

There is no such thing as an "innately gifted writer", there's writers who have practiced and writers who haven't.

I was in for a dental cleaning and my hygienist asked what I did for a living and I said writer. And she asked, screenwriter, tv, poet (I'm in LA)? And I said, novelist. She said she always respected writers because "it wasn't a skill she had herself." And to this lady about to stick sharp metal in my mouth, I said, "bullshit. Anyone can write. It's practice, just like any human endeavor." And she said, "well, some can just write better than others." I thought a moment and conceded, "I think some people can just daydream more than others."

DukeRustfield
Aug 6, 2004


One reason I consider writers a bit of a brotherhood no matter what genre they write is because I think all serious writers tend to live a lot in their heads. You don't really know what other people are thinking about because we don't often ramble out our stream-of-consciousness. But writers tend to have real concrete daydreams of characters and scenarios and stories and they can be living breathing constructs. You may be surprised, but that is "weird" to non-writers who may daydream about shopping or talking to that cute woman, but not about Zog the Destroyer and his romantic love with a werevampire. So I try not to poop too much on writers, even if I don't like their genre/skills, because I know they are similar to me at least at some level.

One of my examples I throw out a lot is when I was writing about a desert party I went to. This was some decades ago. There was a point in real life where I had been standing by the fire because I was cold and the wind shifted and all this smoke and soot went into my face and I began sneezing uncontrollably for like five minutes. As I was writing that recollection, I began sneezing uncontrollably. And when I was done, I was like, "holy poo poo, I just activated my histamine response by writing about it." That's how real our imaginations are.

DukeRustfield
Aug 6, 2004


Writers can be really insufferable. And I should know, because I am.

I've been in a small handful of writers groups in the past and they have all imploded in fiery destruction. There's a weird collision of ego/pomposity, taste/opinion, and the inability to look objectively at something you care so much about.

It takes a lot to get past that. Or minimize it. Like, my Hard Luck Hank series, Hank shares a lot of my own sensibilities. A lot of my reviews basically describe him as a likeable rear end in a top hat or somesuch. Or give other left-handed compliments. And I just laugh. Because they're partially insulting me, personally, but so what?

As far as writers groups and readers, a pro gave me a really good piece of advice I always enjoy sharing. "Be careful whose advice you take and be careful who you let read your work." There is little value in wallpapering your work everywhere and getting bad opinions that may shake your confidence or worse, cause you to make changes you shouldn't.

Almost every piece of writing you make, no matter how good, probably 90% of Earth will dislike it. Everyone just has different tastes. Whole continents of people loathe Shakespeare. But if you can get 10% of Earth to buy your work, you'll be the most successful writer in history.

DukeRustfield
Aug 6, 2004


SurreptitiousMuffin posted:

Is this true? I heard a rumour that $2.99 was basically the perfect price for Kindle ebooks re sales, because if it's cheaper, people assume it's lower quality and avoid it. $2.99 is apparently the magical "normal" price that most people in the store will accept without looking too deeply into it.
I had played around with my pricing for a long time and realized that I simply didn't have enough sales to make any informed decisions, and even if I did, sales volume change for completely unknowable reasons. Like the stock market. If a stock goes up or down, the next day they are totally sure why it happened, but they never could have predicted it the day before. And even though they are "sure," if they replicated the conditions, there's a really great chance something different would happen.

I.e., I had lowered the price of my book and sales dropped. Raised the price and sales rose. Put it in between and it dropped. I did this up and down, back and forth and would get different results even within the same months. I did data mining for a decade or so and I had all kinds of spreadsheets and I was like, "if there's a correlation here, it's beyond me."

I have all my novels sitting at $5.99. My newest one isn't in Select because I'm annoyed at the precipitous drop in royalties. Maybe in the new year I'll put it in.

DukeRustfield
Aug 6, 2004


Select is a mixed bag. If you're selling at $2.99 it's not really a mixed bag. If you're selling at $9.99 (and can actually make sales) then it's kind of stupid to want to chuck that for a buck and some change.

Borrows are counted at as sales in terms of Amazon's rank. And it's very easy for people to just borrow you. Especially your $9.99 book. So that will bump you up higher and allow more people to see you and you'll make more $9.99 sales and buck-and-change borrows.

My last book I stayed out of Select for a month. Then I went in and I think it kind of leveled off. I got a better rank, of course, but I compared from weeks before and sales were within 5-10% of each other.

If you have a low price point, there is very little reason not to be in Select, IMHO. The higher your price, the more you start to question its value.

DukeRustfield
Aug 6, 2004


It was a great year.

The numbers are still going. But not including audiobooks and the rest of the year, I can that my first full year as a professional writer, I made more than my first full year as a senior computer scientist.

OH, and some other fun:

-I search now and then for links to bootleg sites and such and have them de-googled. It's something to do before bed, not that it does much good. But I also end up seeing places where my work is mentioned. I saw one link that caught my attention and a gal had it on her OKCupid profile that she had just finished reading my 2nd novel. I just thought that was pretty cool to have some random person mention that in their Interests section.
-I went to my local comic shop to give them some 11x17" posters to put up and I gave them three autographed books. One of the guys behind the counter said he had seen my book before. Another author had recommended it.

So among Minnesota Lonely Hearts and a few comic geeks, I'm famous.

DukeRustfield
Aug 6, 2004


Jalumibnkrayal posted:

I've resorted to just thinking of it as a dollar per borrow. Probably won't be disappointed if that's your basis for revenue projections.
That's depressing. I remember getting some phat lewts from borrows. Or at least fatter.

But it's funny how the unlimited seemed to come down hardest, in terms of revenue change, on the erotic writers. I'm guessing because those voracious readers seemed to flock to unlimited more than other genre readers and thus more of those purchases got converted to the cheapy borrows. Laws of unintended consequences.

As for short fiction, I have 2 collections that are linked to novels, but they don't sell amazingly well. One problem is pricing. If you're not 2.99-9.99 you're at 35%.
.35*.99 = .3465
Sell 100 stories and you've got a whopping $34.65.

Just don't eat lunch for a few days and pay yourself that money.

On a lark, I combined my 2 collections into one collection with a discount over buying the two. And didn't make it available for borrows. So Amazon lists it as 124 pages. That one has sold better than the other two, so not sure if it's length or price or perceived value, but there you go.

DukeRustfield
Aug 6, 2004


Just dropping in to say hi and plug and such.

I've just joined SFWA.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Science_Fiction_and_Fantasy_Writers_of_America

This is the first year they have let self-publishers join. I got to attend the 50th anniversary Nebula Awards. I could have voted on them but didn't have enough time to read.

That's me in the blue sports jersey sitting next to guys in tuxedos.

https://scontent-lax1-1.xx.fbcdn.ne...e02&oe=561A8560

Plug plug. My new novel is out:

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B010GKF670

In general, most people at SFWA believe the changes to Amazon are Good Things. Because it actually rewards people for creating content worth reading. Of course, we'll see how it pans out.

But my final thoughts, and I've said this a few times here, is that I'm still, *currently* a professional writer. A professional writer of science fiction/comedy/noir/stupid poo poo. I always get a little depressed when I read people who are writing in genres they don't actually like. My neighbor drinks a 12 pack a day so he can keep making GBS threads out the greeting cards and vanity projects that pay the rent. A guy at the Nebulas defined "working authors" as people who have a spouse who is working a real day job.

I could be homeless and turning tricks tomorrow, but right now I can buy my bacon and dog food via writing. Via writing I enjoy doing. I'm not talented. Or good looking. Or smart. Or grammar good atly. Professionally, it does me no good to encourage writers to compete with me here at the bottom of the pile, but writers are a weird lot who need to look out for one another.

DukeRustfield
Aug 6, 2004


Popular Human posted:

I know that since it's a zero sum thing with the way Amazon hands out the fund that SOMEONE has to be making more money under this system, but who? Is there some cadre of authors writing 750-page fantasy novels with a rabid fanbase that I don't know about?

Sulla got it.

Nearly everyone who writes longer, more "in-depth" works benefits from this. As I said in a previous post, most people in sfwa.org were positive on this change. Traditional novel writers felt KU was a bad deal because it was filled with dreck and those gaming the system. Borrow bots and poo poo. Now, product is amorphous. If you put out 50 novelettes or 5 novels or 100 short stories or whatever combination, the only thing that matters is how much time you can entertain a customer. Time spent entertained is a pretty good metric considering we don't have a way to measure how much your Life Was Changed. Basically, you're competing on quality at the lowest level (page) instead of coaxing that click at a higher level. If someone stops reading at page five then you get five page's worth of revenue. I wish I could do that with stuff like computer games and porn.

quote:

Does anyone else feel like this new system disincentivizes longer works, too?

No.

And while the .0057 is a good ballpark, more people are dropping out (yay!) and pretty much every book ballooned in size from their traditional paper/word processing page count. My latest novel is about 40% larger in KENP than the paperback. What really matters is the KENP read every day. It doesn't matter how you get there.

DukeRustfield
Aug 6, 2004


Hi again. Just read some of the last pages. WTF is up with my keyboard? Batteries? Piec o sh!k.

Anyway, I believe in quitting day jobs. The poo poo hits the fan when you do it for real. I can't remember how many times I was in bed and came up with an idea and I got up at 3 am because I was like, "this is my job now, I have to do this." My productivity increased dramatically.

As for price points, I have tried many different times to change from $5.99 to $4.99 to whatever. Sales almost always remained the same. (Okay, seriously, I'm going to put new batteries in my keyboard. Oh, and get rechargeable batteries from Amazon Basics.) I spoke with some other ppl in SFWA.org who have far more respect/books/$ than I do and they said once you're in the $5ish category, it's indistinguishable. I've found that to be true.

I like Amazon a lot. They've been good to me. Last year (2015) they put 2 of my books on their monthly deals and audible.com put an audiobook on a deal. For the audiobook I ended up selling about 10 times my normal rate, which is awful nice. I'm not sure how much I'll make in 2015, probably less than I did as a computer programmer, but this job is soooo much better.

I advise against looking at what sells and mimicking that. You are a creative producer and you need to write what you like and are best at. If you're a great hockey player you don't try and become a basketball star just because basketball plays vastly more, you'll just be a poo poo bballer in a junior pro team. I mean, you can go out and write The Lord of the Bangles and try and copy Tolkien the best you can. But you'll never beat him--or likely come anywhere close. You're trying to brand yourself and your product. If you can get your own niche, even if it's small, you'll be able to get a loyal following and you might be able to parlay that into more.

DukeRustfield
Aug 6, 2004


psychopomp posted:

Unless nobody buys that poo poo, in which case get good at writing something more marketable or learn to enjoy poverty.
Unless you are like pathologically insane, there are millions of people who share the EXACT same interests you do. It is the good side of "you're not a snowflake" mantra.

I swear, sometimes I come here and people seem so absurdly afraid of failure that they are paralyzed to even try. You've got a ton of advice saying that the first XXXX stuff you write will be crap--which is of course true. Why should your first ninja zombie crocodile novella be a smash hit?

My question is, why on earth would you write something you don't enjoy? You've traded one lovely office job for an (IMHO) even shittier job that forces you to take your passion and squirt a big steaming pile of poo poo on top of it. You still have rear end in a top hat bosses. They're just the ones who demand a billionaire who likes sexing fatties.

Potboilers are nothing new. But for serious writers they were always the last resort and way to pay the rent. Not an end to itself. Just ask if you really want to write what you're writing now for forty more years. If you do, then you're golden and I should shut my tootsie hole. But I suspect that isn't entirely the case.

DukeRustfield
Aug 6, 2004


moana posted:

I want to write what I'm writing for another year and then retire, so I'm not going to take advice from the Serious Writer with a superiority complex and a stick up his dick about genre fiction authors, heyo
I'm a professional genre fiction author who is serious about it. I make my living off it. I pay my rent off it. But it's still genre fiction and it will never win a pulitzer or nobel or even a hugo or nebula. Pretty much every one of reviews says something like, "this isn't great fiction but it's fun." I'm in the trash aisle of scifi so I know all about not being taken seriously.

I feel writers are all brethren--it takes a certain brain to be a writer of any type. I don't give a gently caress what you like to write. I'm actually a member of the scifi romance subgroup in SFWA, which caused a bit of a kerfuffle when it was created on the forums. The only thing I'm "trying" to help out with is if you're writing what you don't enjoy and feel you must. Because you don't.

DukeRustfield
Aug 6, 2004


Daytrading is an absurd analogy to writing what you like. You are not putting your fortunes out on the market and gambling with them. You will never end up in a "cardboard box" unless you're living in a flophouse with one cup of ramen noodles to your name and quite literally have to sell $25 worth of books or be homeless. In which case, you probably aren't reading this.

Every writing book that has ever been written, every class on writing that has ever been taught, will say to write what you like and what you know. You are the only one who has brought up some concept of "serious writers." I don't know why you think I'm attacking you. I've stated now numerous times I don't give a gently caress what you write.

quote:

I never knew I loved PNR until I wrote one and it was awesome
So you're doing exactly what I said. Good. I'm glad. So this doesn't apply to you.

quote:

I'm not telling people not to write what they love.
But you are. You are repeatedly. You are in the very sentences after you say you're not.

quote:

Maybe your passion sucks.
Maybe it doesn't. Maybe try and see. You are saying I'm some evil horrible person for stating that people should give it a shot. But I see advice in this thread, going back to the start, that is warning people to not try. Leave their passion in the dumpster because it's probably terrible fanfic poo poo and will OMG daytrade you into oblivion. There's post after post dissuading people of that based on a genre or tagline.

quote:

So I think you're just plain wrong, and you should get over yourself and how right your advice is and how anyone who doesn't follow it is a coward.
Ditto.

DukeRustfield
Aug 6, 2004


My cover for my latest book is done. Small version.



I think this might be the first book I don't have a back cover. It's getting hard to justify considering I don't sell all that many paperbacks. Speaking of paperbacks, I've slowly started converting my books to 6x9 (from 5"x8") to drastically cut down on the cover price.

My audiobook on my last novel hovered around top ten in science fiction for a few weeks before dropping like a stone. I was pretty excited as something like 7 of the 10 books around me had movie/tv deals. I still encourage people to think hard about audiobooks, as I believe they can be a potentially large source of revenue outside normal ebook sphere.

I contacted ACX/Audible about what it would take to buy out my producer on my royalty share books so I would have full ownership. It would just make advertising easier and it probably wouldn't cost "too" much once the books start falling off in sales. But ACX responded by saying I would lose all my reviews/ratings--basically have to delete it and upload again as a new project. Which is pretty much a non-starter.

For those people evaluating covers, I heartily recommend viewing them at thumbnail sizes. I saw a few here that I could immediately tell the main titles would vanish at small resolution. Sizes people will see in ads, or their phones, or even on amazon. I had a situation with my last book where I ordered a poster and t-shirt and when I got them, the monster was so dark, I went back and purpled it up so I could see it at worse resolutions. Also, if you're even remotely considering going audiobook, ACX requires covers be square and un-skewed. So your portrait-sized cover won't work on Audible unless you chop it considerably.

Adbot
ADBOT LOVES YOU

DukeRustfield
Aug 6, 2004


You pay the vast majority of Createspace books based on the # of pages. So the larger the dimensions, the smaller the font, the tighter the margins, the less the mandatory cover price. I think making no changes except the dimensions, I shaved off $2.50 from the cover price of one book. And that wasn't $2.50 going into anyone's pocket, it was just the required cost of printing.

I wrote ACX back about the royalty split. I'm pretty sure we don't own reviews because Amazon will pull reviews for whatever reasons they choose.

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
  • Post
  • Reply