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text 2019-07-10 09:14
Author services sites that don't deliver - but still charge

It’s a rare day indeed that I don’t receive promotional material regarding some writing related program, service, publishing platform or marketing gimmick.


There seems to be no end to people who, for a price, will support my career as an author. Where do they all come from and considering how many there are how do any of them make a living?


You wouldn’t think there were that many suckers out there.


Here are three more sure fire suggestions to polish your manuscript, generate reviews and enhance your sales that don’t work.


Reedsy Discovery. Reedsy took umbrage when I described their new Discovery site as a “Another paid review, bogus up-voting book marketing site”, so I’ll let them describe it for you (how fair is that?). Visit https://blog.reedsy.com/announcing-reedsy-discovery/


Let’s assume you send your manuscript plus $50 and the Reedsy team smiles upon you. Your book gets a high quality review and your promoted on their Discovery Feed. Reedsy doesn’t appear to have any shortage authors ready to anti up $50. I receive at least two emails a week from them with a list of newly launched titles.


But does it work?


I’ve been tracking a few titles and here are the results to this date, July 10, 2019. The dates indicated are the Reedsy Discover launch date. Many of these books were actually published months before.


In Verse by Tex DeJésus was launched May 15th. It has no reviews on Amazon and one review on Goodreads posted by the author.


Nobody Drowned by Peter Kingsmill was launched on May 22 and has three reviews on Amazon (two are prior to the Reedsy release date) and two on Goodreads - one duplicated from Amazon and one from the author.


Martyrs al Sabra by Dan Kalin has no reviews on Amazon and three reviews and two ratings on Goodreads, the majority of which were posted prior to the Reedsy launch.


In Case You Forgot by Aubrey Stack was launched on May 23 and has no reviews anywhere.


The Alchemy of Noise by Lorraine Devon Wilke had its Reedsy launch on July 3 and has 32 reviews on Amazon and 40 on Goodreads, all posted prior to the launch.


One thing for sure, this site isn’t going to launch your literary career.


Following the Reedsy release most of the titles I tracked showed no increase in reviews on Goodreads or Amazon and no bump in Amazon book ratings.


BetaReader.io invites you to “share your unpublished manuscript to selected readers. Collect feedback and reading data to understand what works and what needs polishing. Private, secure, and easy to use.” I took advantage of their Basic Forever Free Plan which allowed me to upload one active manuscript, and get response from three readers for up 30 days. I got zilch response. Let’s face it, good beta readers are hard to find, why should they be more successful at it than anyone else?


Free email blasts. http://awesomegang.com http://pretty-hot.com https://mybookplace.net/ An incestuous cluster using “free” as a come-on to get you to buy up. Don’t know what you get when you pay, but it’s not even worth your time to fill in the meta data for the free option.


Stay calm, be brave, watch for the signs.




Author Amazon Page https://www.amazon.com/-/e/B003DS6LEU


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text 2019-06-29 00:47
Please vote!



The Quest is an extraordinary fantasy PNR with no typical fantasy stereotyping.

I reviewed Mrs Kantas's book and really enjoyed it.

So please take a moment to vote for The Quest which has been nominated for best fantasy in The Readers Choice Awards.

Click through to page number 8 FANTASY and then scroll down to the bottom of the voting to vote for The Quest.


Thank you, everyone,

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text 2019-06-23 05:52
Re Kathleen Hale

(Edit #1 at the end)



I've just received an email notification that someone going by the name "Sarah Hutchins" posted a comment to a post I wrote on a long-abandoned Wordpress blog.  The post is dated 22 October 2014.






I had completely forgotten about this blog.  It was one of those things I started and then . .  dropped.  I do that far too often.



Edited Sunday morning, 23 June 2019, to add


When I posted all this last night, I was took stunned and too tired to do any real research.  Thanks to GreyWarden aka darkwriter aka John Green over on Twitter, I looked for a link back to the writer of the post and (double facepalm) there it was right at the end of the email notification:




I just forwarded the emal to Scaachi Koul, writer of the Buzzfeed article that seems to have brought Kathleen Hale back into the spotlight.



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text 2019-06-13 23:59
This is not tolerable -- BBA

(Update from the blogger is here  https://redhatterbookblog.com/2019/06/14/hatter-chat-the-last-post-about-this/ )






The author is K. Alice Compeau.  The publisher is Limitless Publishing and they have dropped the author.


Title is Easy Love.





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text 2019-06-06 22:59
I do not know exactly what happened because it's complicated

Some of you will understand what's going on here, and for some of you I can only offer my apologies.  I no longer know where to go with this crap.


Apparently another Goodreads member has been banned for negatively shelving a book, or books by a particular author or something.


I don't know this reader.  I think she may also be a writer, but at this moment I'm not sure.


There have been so many issues going on that I don't trust my memory to be 100% accurate on this, so I'm more than open to correction, especially with documentation.  I have some screen shots, but not a lot.


The reader's Twitter handle implies her name is Angela, and that's how I will refer to her.


As I recall, Angela and several others were engaged in discovering the various Amazon book stuffers.  I was one of them.  We all worked together, some of us doing more and some of us doing less, to identify the books and authors who had violated Kindle Direct Publishing's rules to game the system.  That was one of several issues.


There was also an issue with a specific book and it author who appeared to be engaged in some kind of racial insensitivity.  That's the only term I can think of to describe it, because I wasn't involved.  I don't remember who the author was or the title of the book.  Angela engaged with this author on the issue.  I didn't.  I don't even know why I didn't; I think I was engaged in other issues.


Another person on Twitter, an author whose name I won't mention because I don't want to draw her attention, challenged Angela.  I don't want to say she attacked Angela because I didn't see enough of the various exchanges to characterize their interactions as an attack.  The other author was apparently outed as having several Twitter accounts and using them to challenge other people.  Apparently, according to my sketchy memory, she denied having the other accounts, but there was substantial evidence presented to show that she was not being entirely honest.


While all of this was going on, one of Angela's supporters challenged me about something.  I asked for clarification or additional information before I would come dow on one side or another.  Twitter being what it is, with its limited space for expression, there may well have been misunderstandings.  I didn't get any clarification, and the next thing I knew, both Angela and her supporter had blocked me.


I think part of the issue was that I suggested Angela and/or her supporters not keep poking the bear or risk getting bitten.  I tend to do that.  There's a point at which antagonism no longer generates any return on the investment in indignation.


At least one other of her supporters has not blocked me.


The other author, the one accused of having multiple Twitter accounts, has also not blocked me.


I don't know all the details of the Bane event.  I know part of it, but I've not been particularly active in it.


I think everyone knows how I feel about authors who attack readers or tell readers how to review.  Bane apparently was engaged in reader silencing or intimidation.


Bane is also pretty much of a nobody, I guess.  Jill Mansell is not a nobody.  She's now going after readers, and it's getting ugly.  If Angela has been removed from Goodreads due to her shelving of Bane's books, this is further intimidation of readers.  Those of us who go back to 2013 know what that was like.


A good part of the problem, however, goes back to the fact that readers are not protected.  They aren't safe when voicing unpopular opinions, even if only unpopular with the authors.  Bad books are bad books, even if only one reader thinks so.  On Amazon, on Goodreads, on Twitter: Authors feel safe in attacking readers, and too often there aren't enough defenders.


For the most part, we've been very lucky here on BookLikes.  We post our one-star, half-star, and no-star reviews and the authors leave us alone.  Yeah, there were the goofy posts from Weinberg and his minions, but that was minor.  I've had one author on Twitter stalk me here and get all upset because even without mentioning her name or the title of her book, I made a disparaging remark.  But we aren't likely to get booted for negative reviews, and we can shelve without retaliation.


But BookLikes is not in the forefront of book reviewing.  Goodreads and Amazon -- and they're joined at the corporate hip -- are.  And when a reader is removed from those platforms, she's effectively silenced.


Too few of the attackers ever are.






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