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The Whining and Bitching Thread

Discussion in 'GMD Social Forum' started by waif, Apr 25, 2008.

  1. Slammed

    Slammed Active Member

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    Well I spilled my situation to my boss today. Asked her if a month of unpaid leave is an option, which basically led to her asking if that's really what I want or if I just want to quit. She suggested I think about it and decide later. I don't see how self-interest would allow me to just quit without requesting a sabbatical first, and hoping there's some magical change in my attitude toward the job by the time I come back. So most likely what'll happen is I'll request the leave, it won't get approved, then I'll quit. C'est la vie.[/QUOTE]

    Sucks when bosses have to be stupid about things. I remember asking my old boss if I could have 1 night off a week, I was working 10pm-12pm 7 nights at the time, and you'd reckon I was asking him for his left leg. I was the one who had to hire the person to do my night off, I had to train him, I couldn't take the night off until the guy could do the job, yet the boss, who didn't even answer his phone after midnight while we worked, thought he was being put out.

    A good writing group can be the best thing ever, but it really does have to be the right people. I find it funny that so often on social media people just love to hate everything, they get triggered by everything, and they bitch when someone thinks they are wrong. Put them on blog, or the like for writing critique and the same people can only come up with, "that's good", or "yeah that's ok". What the fuck cunt, you spent 5 hours arguing with someone you thought was wrong on FB and that's your writing critique?

    There is a lot more to publishing than an advance though. There is a hundred 'vanity' publishers out there that for about $5K will take your book and treat you like a publishing house does. They foot the rest of the bill, they do the legals etc but they don't care about the book once it's made their investment back. They wont kill it but that doesn't mean they keep pushing it either. A traditional publisher doesn't necessarily offer an advance, different deals different payments. But they do handle everything from editing (no author can self edit), which includes line editing, spell checking and actual book editing, they handle the printing and publishing, they handle the advertising and marketing and they handle all legals. But they have to see potential in the book, self publishing and vanity publishing doesn't need that.

    Profit margins are also a possible trap. Sure it sounds good that you're making 70%+ of the revenue (and Amazon should be higher than that) for every sale but if you only sell 10 copies a year that's not really profit. A publishing house might be as low as 30% for print and 70% for electronic but it's in their best interest to push the sales and 30% of their sales can quickly become more than 70% of self published sales.

    As I mentioned I have looked at that fairly extensively from all angles and it's not that any one of them is terrible it's more of a case of each angle is only suited to certain criteria. Understanding that criteria could make a huge difference.

    I've got a mate who self published a book of poetry last year. To get the books to printed stage, which was also having a saleable product on Amazon he spent more than $40K. Now he has boxes full of books he sells for about $10 through his own site and through Amazon and a e-reader version which sells for $7 unless Amazon tell him they are putting on sale and he has to sell it for 99cents.
     
    zabu of nΩd likes this.
  2. zabu of nΩd

    zabu of nΩd Free Insultation

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    I'm aware of vanity presses and the need to hire an editor. I already hired an editor once to evaluate an earlier draft of my book. FWIW, the editor said it has potential, and that if it weren't for genre constraints at her publishing house, she'd try to acquire me. The publisher she works for is listed here, and she has good reviews, so I think she's legit. I can afford a full editing job, as well as a lawyer on the off chance I need help dealing with an infringement. I've registered stuff for copyright before, and I know not to infringe other people's work in my own. Amazon's self-publishing service handles printing. Obviously I'm still skeptical of whether a publisher would add value for me, but I'm happy to hear your rebuttal.

    Your royalty figures are way off according to this article: https://careertrend.com/info-8116741-much-do-bestselling-authors-make.html

    "According to the Authors Guild, authors commonly receive 10 percent of sales up to 5,000 copies, 12.5 percent of the next 5,000 and 15 percent after that. Any advance paid to the author before publication is deducted from the incoming royalties from sales."

    That's why I assume authors typically make next to nothing on top of the advance.

    You sure he didn't get ripped off somewhere along the line? I'd like to know the breakdown of where that $40k went. Based on my math, $10k is the most I'd need to go through the publication process, with most of that going to the editor. Good to know about the discount practice on Amazon though.
     
    #16042 zabu of nΩd, Feb 25, 2020
    Last edited: Feb 25, 2020
    Slammed likes this.
  3. Slammed

    Slammed Active Member

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    I don't have a rebuttal. Amazon works, there is no denying it, but it doesn't work for every book, and there is reasons for that. I can't tell you if your case suits Amazon self publishing any more than you can tell I'm better off following the same path. The two biggest mistakes people make when comes to writing books is thinking they understand everything and not being able to see it when they don't understand something. There is plenty of things Amazon T&C's have in them that can have effects later on, but likewise some contracts are very restrictive. No single way is right for every book or every person.

    My figures are based off several people I know who do write novels. Every contract is different and advances are very rarely paid to first time writers. You have to prove to a publisher that you have what they want which in most cases means you need a product to sell them. Very few first time writers get an advance to write a book, especially a novel. Advances come after contracts are signed and the publisher pays you to write for them exclusively, the advance is as much about keeping you on their books as it is about you writing. Some publishers wont even offer advances until the author has multiple books, they offer a 'first choice option' which basically gives them first choice but they don't have to buy anything. Also rates vary greatly between different publishers and also for different books. Novels/Fiction is usually a higher royalty than Non Fiction or factual books and e-pubs are always higher than print.

    Yeah but publishing is only a small part of making a book and everything has a cost, even the writing part has a cost. If you start a business you want to know everything that costs you money that's why you create a business plan with profit and loss statements, projected earnings, market research etc. A book is no different and there is a lot of costs that are not obvious even if you can do some of it yourself. Even getting a publisher to do a lot of the hard lifting it pays to know what they are doing rather than just letting them do it. The $40K the guy I know spent is from the onset to a saleable product. It included the time he took off work to write, the entire process through proof reading, editing, design, layout (he vows never again to use Amazon lay out services), the typsetting, all the way up to having a box of books on his desk. Then the advertising after it was ready. His was a little different to most novels because it was very regional specific, despite selling throughout the world, and he organised radio interviews, library visits, newspaper interviews himself. He paid for a website and web advertising because Amazon's advertising is a very narrow target model. Everything has a cost and Amazon/self pub can't do it all.

    Again every book is different and there isn't one system that suits all. It's also fucking hard to get a publisher, but that doesn't automatically mean Amazon is a better option, it's a different option. It's also an option that most published authors will tell you has pitfalls to be very careful of, but that doesn't mean it doesn't work.
     
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  4. Blurry_Dreams

    Blurry_Dreams Active Member

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    how many K words do you expect your finished novel to be??
    all the Anita Blake novels are edited down to be aprox the same number of words as each other
    the same with all the Drizzt Do'Urden novels and all the Alex Cross novels
    not sure how much more than 45k these novels are
    you're prolly at the point where you can write-out what's going to end-up the last several chapters and then work backwards to fill in the space between the last few chapters and what you've already written
     
  5. Blurry_Dreams

    Blurry_Dreams Active Member

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    with things like minuteman press
    minuteman press dallas - Google Search
    you'd actually keep 100% of the revenue, minus the cost of you paying for the cost of printing, minus a small fee (for the printing company to stay in business), minus the cost of you doing all of the advertising yourself, (advertising really costs nothing if you use facebook or patreon)
    if you're book has superheros in it, you can self-publish and sell your book at superhero cons
    if you're doing sci-fi, you can sell it at sci-fi cons
    me personally,
    i'm actually planning on self-publishing my book specifically so that i can sell it at cosplay conventions
    IIRC, you actually have to self-publish in order to be able to sell your book at cosplay cons

    the chaotic nation comic chaotic nation comic - Google Search
    is self-published, sold only at anime cons and the woman who writes and draws this comic is making a fortune selling this
     
    #16045 Blurry_Dreams, Feb 28, 2020
    Last edited: Feb 28, 2020
  6. Blurry_Dreams

    Blurry_Dreams Active Member

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    @zabu of nΩd

    the superhero novel i've written in my head is kinda a female version of The Punisher
    with a cloak-of-invisibility, speed-demon boots, a gun that only fire while it's invisible,
    and i'm using 1st-person instead of 3rd-person as a short-cut for world-building
     
  7. Slammed

    Slammed Active Member

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    45k words is little more than a novella in adult lit.
    40-50K is about average the ages of 10-15
    While a novel by definition can be considered anything over 40K there is very few places that will categorise such a small book as so.
    Even the Mills and Boon type romance stories that are released by the hundreds are paid at nothing less than 55K
    Most novels range between 80-100K with the exception of Sci-Fi which often pushes 120K
    None of the figures are hard and fast but books labelled as novels and under 70K and by unknown authors generally fall out of the novel categories on most sites pretty quickly.

    When it comes to selling the book, you can sell it anywhere once it has an ISBN, you can take it into books shops, sell it at markets, sell it on fleabay. But going to cons cost money, selling at cons costs money, it's far from a cheap way to sell books and you've got to be the salesman with the sales pitch to get people interested you can't just rock up to a con with a bunch of books and say "look at me I wrote a book now you should buy it". Although fools and their money are easily parted.

    As for using Facebook and Patreon to advertise what a fucking joke, try living in the real world. Sure most people will have a FB page and some might even sell shit from it but it's far from a successful way to sell. How do you get people to your Facebook page, it's not a case of build it they and they will come. One of my clients sells art on FB, she spends upwards of 30 hours a week maintaining contacts, working on new contacts, figuring out ideas for sales and advertising, tell her selling on FB is free. There is 2.5billion FB accounts good luck standing out enough to sell a single book from one of those without constant time, effort and money. As for Patreon what a fucking joke, that's not advertising, it begging...oh I see.
     
  8. MasterpieceMesias

    MasterpieceMesias Professional Asshole

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    ...OK, I won't lie, I may actually read something like that.

    Probably would allow you to sleep in a real, big boy home if it got big enough
     
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  9. Blurry_Dreams

    Blurry_Dreams Active Member

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    it will prolly sell pretty well at superhero cons
    assuming i get a good-looking cover picture
    with the word "superhero" and the phrase "inappropriate for children" on the front cover
    not even trying to become richest-author-ever kinda thing
    just going the self-publishing route to avoid editors altering my stuff
    and i would really enjoy selling my stuff at the superhero cons,
    interacting directly with the people reading my material
    and if i self-publish,
    i can hire an artist (of my own choosing) to turn my superhero character into a comic
    a superhero comic would sell at the anime cons
     
    #16049 Blurry_Dreams, Mar 11, 2020
    Last edited: Mar 11, 2020
  10. Blurry_Dreams

    Blurry_Dreams Active Member

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    i understood all of this^^ i just didn't remember the exact numbers

    i'm planning on having the word "superhero" and the phrase "inappropriate for children" on the front cover
    so if it ends up in shops it will prolly just be only comic-book-shops


     
  11. Carpe Mortem

    Carpe Mortem Benevolently Batshit

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    On the note of the arts, linguistic and otherwise... I did something I thought I'd never do a few weeks ago and it was a good feeling.

    I recently moved to a place that's really a step between broke young person and the life I eventually want for myself. So quality of life overall has already drastically improved. And for 15, 20 years, I've held onto these two huge binders full of every drawing I felt great about, every school paper I received a standing ovation for, every short story, every teenage diary entry, every canvas paper painting, every last glimmer of a time when I actually read, wrote, and created regularly.

    Well, I threw it all away as I was unpacking. I looked at each piece, I read each professor's comment, I acknowledged, then I threw in the bin. I think that holding onto the remarkable kid I was has and always will hold me back. I used to be such a right- brained factory of artistic accomplishment, I would write poems constantly and I knew the mythos of so many fantasies and authors inside and out, and I gazed out windows yearning for these creatures to be real. I was one of the smart kids in school, and I was hands down considered the most talented writer for many grades and locations. I was acknowledged as exceptional.

    As I've grown up, my brain has revealed itself to be a leftie. I'm entirely financially driven - the white collar lifestyle has released to me its bountiful fruits at long last, and I'd argue expressing oneself should be purely an outlet, not an artform. I'd say I can string some words together in a lilting sort of way, but it's not that important to me anymore.

    I'm more proud of a new spreadsheet I developed in the office, wherein I'm automatically comparing total sales for the year against the prior year and benchmarking it against a continual 5% increase. Harder than it sounds to figure out btw. I created a helper column to search for the partner month of the prior year using dynamic reference to A, so A might be January 2019 then F would autocalcuate as January 2018. In addition is accounting for the continuous increase, and showing the status of the current year against that increase so our quarterly meetings aren't always "well we'll see in December ".

    My point is, as good as I feel about this, and as well as I've been doing - which is pretty well considering I have no degree and about 6 years ago I was a part time janitor smoking pot every day, making half the money - I can't bring myself to engage in any sort of creativity when I'm not at work, and because of this some days I would rather work later than come home. I've been playing Cities:Skylines lately and that's helping a bit, appealing to both sides of the ol noggin. But I'm not afraid to admit, a part of me missed the praise. If you slap a drawing up on the facebooker everyone kisses your ass about it. If I compose some lengthy bullshit prose my mom tells me how talented I am. But if I proudly display a completely traffic free mega city I've created, beautiful and happy and well functioning with clean civic engineering, nobody gives a shit and nobody's impressed. I'm well respected and appreciated at work but none of it matters when I lock those doors behind me.

    So, good feeling, letting go of the past. But on the topic of the thread, it also brings to light what one of the hidden thorns plaguing me likely for years probably was. I miss the praise. I miss impressing mentors. I can do it at the office, but it's not enough. And I wish I wasn't so weak that I required validation. My new self help goal is to truly not give a shit and focus on my creativity for it's own sake, rather than the rewards it can bring me - not give a shit, like I've thought for years I haven't. Maybe I'll even draw something when I'm fully released. I was dabbling with animation last year, and I'd say I'm definitely a scholar of the cartoon arts, so if I applied myself maybe I could enjoy it for longer.

    And I gotta say, this has been it's own kind of cathartic. I forgot how great forums were for running my fucking mouth so nobody else has to know about it.
     
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  12. zabu of nΩd

    zabu of nΩd Free Insultation

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    Sounds to me like you're both, but siding with the left brain for quality of life reasons.

    I consider myself both (i.e. technical career + artistic hobbies), and I think there's an important synergy between the two in my life. Since I'm on the verge of abandoning my technical career, I know full well how hard it is to keep both sides active simultaneously. In my case, I feel like the career forced me into artificially over-committing to the left brain, and I'm at a point where I need to let the right brain breathe and see where it leads me.

    I can see how you'd view the right brain as offering little beyond self-expression, but for me it's much more. It's like a telescope - it broadens my perspective of the world, and unlocks a myriad of possibilities for how I can relate to the world and interact with it. I don't draw a hard line between fantasy and reality - I see the two as bleeding into each other around the edges, and there are few things I love more than exploring (or creating) that gray area.
     
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  13. MasterpieceMesias

    MasterpieceMesias Professional Asshole

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    Don't you wish you could skip in real life? I can skip those stupidass YouTube and PornHub ads that, ironically, make me less inclined to check out whatever is being advertised.

    There are some things in life where I'd like to say fuck you and then skip or pause it
     
  14. Slammed

    Slammed Active Member

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    Why not just skip all the way to the end of your life and save worrying about all those times you'd have to reach for the skip button?
     
  15. MasterpieceMesias

    MasterpieceMesias Professional Asshole

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    Hilarious, you're a natural comedian
     
  16. Slammed

    Slammed Active Member

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    Thanks, I'm glad you're so appreciative of my abilities.
     
  17. Krow

    Krow Garbage Connoisseur

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    I’m beyond frustrated with Lenovo. I have a Legion gaming laptop. Not top of the line but pretty good when it gets going. Lenovo has been badgering me about an update and I finally did it Friday night. Now my laptop seems to be stuck in a “boot loop” and will not do anything past the logo screen. Oh and Lenovo is basically unreachable rn because of covid-19. Oh and all computer repair stores here are closed. Currently a $1500 paperweight.
     
  18. Slammed

    Slammed Active Member

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    If it's a windows update, USB boot and roll back the driver.
    If it's a BIOS update, get the previous version from Lenovo, follow the instructions downgrade the bios. Most Lenovos have a setting to stop downgrading but it can be changed for emergency situations.
     
  19. Krow

    Krow Garbage Connoisseur

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    im going to have to do some reading I suppose. I have another crappy laptop in the house I can use and a USB for downloading
    shit to it.
     
  20. Dak

    Dak mentat

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    That sucks dude. What sort of update was it? I'm assuming not a Windows update since Lenovo was bugging you about it. Slammed is probably right though / and it's likely a bios update if you get stuck in a boot loop/not windows bugging you.
     

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