An author is auctioning off the film-rights to his PublishAmerica novel LAS CRUCES on Ebay for a minimum bid of $1.3 million…and has issued a press release touting the non-event. Keep in mind, the book hasn’t sold for the amount, or anything close to it. It’s what he’s dreaming of getting. But you wouldn’t know that from his press release.
The book’s author seemed astonished at how fast things were
moving for [his novel] LAS CRUCES. "I’m genuinely surprised, and of course elated at the
strong response to this book since it debuted this summer," said J.T. Fisher,
"there are so many great books being published all the time, it’s almost
unbelievable there’s an opportunity to see Las Cruces go to the film market so
soon. When I initially heard about it – and the shock wore off – I jumped at
He’s shocked? Does he have a split personality that forgot to inform his other personalities that he’d put his book up on Ebay? And what’s so "unbelievable" about the opportunity? Anybody with an Internet connection can auction something off on Ebay. I could auction my dirty underwear and set a minimum bid of $1.3 million. It doesn’t mean anybody but me thinks my leather speedo is worth that much. It doesn’t legitimize my underwear…or, in J.T.’s case, his novel. But J.T. is clearly heavy into self-delusion. Regard this snippet from his press release:
Effective October 1, 2005, worldwide film and video rights will be offered in a
record setting auction on Ebay for Las Cruces, the top debut novel of 2005.
The "top debut novel" according to who, exactly? The author? The author’s mom? PublishAmerica? And people wonder why vanity press books and their authors don’t get any respect…
(Thanks to Chris Well for the heads-up)
53 thoughts on “The Self-Deluded”
Either he’s nuts or has a great sense of humor. It bothers me to think someone that insane is walking among us, so I’ll go with “sense of humor.”
What buzz? This is the first I’ve heard of the book.
Oh. You said PA. Had an interesting conversation with a bookstore owner last weekend about those guys. We thought it was too bad because the book she was selling was well-done and might have sold well if it had, like, an editor?
I can’t find his site on ebay. Or is it just a hoax?
The auction is supposed to launch Oct. 1. Today is Sept. 22nd.
Don’t laugh or scratch your head. Hollywood does nearly the equivalent all the time.
How many movies are advertised as “The Number One Movie in America!”…just slightly BEFORE release?
People are such lemmings that husband usually turns to wife and says, “I guess we’ll go see THAT movie…it’s the big popular one.” And wife says (eyeing the advert copy “MUST SEE”): “Yeah, let’s go.”
It’s called hype and chutzpah. Same in book field. Most books come to most lemmings’ attention only after the advertising has penetrated…the kind that says, “The GREATEST…MUST-READ…TOP SELLER,” etc. As measured how? Usually some statistical trickery is at work (count the number of books on the bookstore shelf for one day in cherry-picked markets, for example…what remainders?).
Self-pubs think you can “be a writer” on you own. So why not be your own PR BS artist, too – on the cheap?
In Googling this guy (no relation to me, I swear) I found a couple of interesting things. His press release on PRWeb refers to his book as a “top ten debut novel,” but when you read through the body of the article he actually means TOP TEN PERCENT of Amazon sellers, which means perhaps as good as somewhere in the top 100,000. “Top ten” and “top ten percent” are not quite the same things.
And I see he’s donating his royalties to Katrina victims, and making sure everyone knows about it. Doubtless he intends to donate his $1.3 million to charity too *coughing loudly*. Very generous of him…
Sleight of hand on that note Ellen, but this is a hopeless effort. There is no buzz, and hardly any sales. No producer bought the book on eBay did they? Congratulate yourself when that happens.
Huh? I don’t understand your comment, Mark. I’m implying (in my usual extraordinarily subtle way) that the guy is a big fat, uh, shall we say spinner of the truth? His press release is full of misleading information and sheer imaginative silliness. I’m not congratulating myself or him. I repeat: I’m not related to this guy. He gives a bad name to all Fishers everywhere.
Not only that but he reviewed his own book at Amazon. Jeepers that’s the bottom of the well. $24.95 for a paperback. PA strikes another down.
Look up the meaning of “sleight of hand.”
Of course, the ridiculous thing is that no producer is going to buy it sight unseen, but it’s hard to imagine one caring enough to actually send a lackey out to look for the damned thing before the auction.
Still, if it crosses my desk, I’ll let you know. I almost hope it does — I’m sure I could get a half-dozen good blog entries out of it.
“Not only that but he reviewed his own book at Amazon.” Okay, that is extraordinarily painful.
$24.95 to read Fisher’s book sounds like a pretty good deal. Tell him to spell my name correctly on the cashier’s check.
The whole thing smacks of a desperate attempt to draw some attention to the book and maybe move a few copies. It won’t.
Lee, I note your comments:
‘I could auction my dirty underwear and set a minimum bid of $1.3 million. It doesn’t mean anybody but me thinks my leather speedo is worth that much.’
How much will it cost for you NOT to reveal your dirty skiddies to the world, as I think I might be prepared to make a bid on that . . . ?
A few thoughts from The Self Deluded author of “Las Cruces”:
1. Perhaps you’re all missing the point: The ebay auction actually isn’t/wasn’t about selling movie rights, which for a large sum would nevertheless be acceptable, but about generating interest in the book. Hate to have to break the news to you, but despite your consternation, it actually seems to work very well.
2. Whether you like it or not, Guerilla marketing is inexpensive, and it works. Your blog entries are affirmation of that. Thank you. I’ve made it onto a tremendous number of blogs and other reports – admittedly many with the same kinds of sour grapes comments and put downs – but it gets people to take a look, it’s pulled Las Cruces out of the proverbial haystack, and that’s valuable (see below).
3. As to the comments about my novel not being worthy, keep in mind that those who judge quickly and freely, but without any actual information (in this case, about what’s inside the book), simply prove themselves prejudiced and narrowminded. One has to wonder why the various seemingly literate and open thinking bloggers on this site have reacted that way — could it be jealousy? Are they feeling threatened somehow? It certainly seems they lack a sense of humor…
4. Finally, as to the value of the work, it’s apparent that some bloggers are not especially adept at math. For example, the last I checked, Mr. Goldberg’s popular paperbacks can be gotten for a cool $6.95 on Amazon, and they seem to draw sales rankings in the 100k-300k range. My novel sells for about four times as much, and achieves sales rankings equal to – and often better than – Mr. Goldberg’s, which suggests the market values mine about four to five times as much as his.
I ask, where am I misguided? Isn’t the goal in any business to maximize value? Doesn’t the marketplace let us know what the true value is? And shouldn’t one rather sell their works for $25 than a measly seven? [hint: it’s not a trick question, but for all those who hid out in Lit to avoid math classes, feel free to use a calculator].
Again, thank you for taking the time kick around my promotional antics. I mean it, you’ve done me a great service. I encourage you to keep posting and venting if it makes you feel good, and tell your friends all about it, too. Since I’ve committed all profits/royalties to charity, I think my conscience is clear, and no apologies are forthcoming.
“My novel sells for about four times as much, and achieves sales rankings equal to – and often better than – Mr. Goldberg’s, which suggests the market values mine about four to five times as much as his.”
There’s simply no way this can be a true statement so it fits right in with title. Just another duped PA author who thinks he’s been published when he hasn’t.
Let’s see, as far as I know:
– Amazon sales rankings are visible to everyone
– book prices at Amazon are visible to everyone
So, it should be awfully easy to verify these two items, as I did before responding.
Curiously, you don’t care to, and are more comfortable chocking it up to “simply no way this can be true.”
It would also be easy to confirm whether Las Cruces is a good book or not — but, unfortunately, objectivity and critical thinking don’t seem likely to come into play in your arguments.
That’s certainly not compelling logic, and I hope it’s not a sign that you feel in any way insecure, and are hoping to chase off these feelings by blindly throwing rocks.
However, I thank you for continuing the dialogue and debate. Please share more when you have a chance.
Of course, what the Amazon rankings COULD (and really, almost certainly do) mean is that like virtually every commerical writer, the bulk of Goldberg’s books are sold in bookstores with Amazon making up only a tiny tiny fraction of sales. While for a PA book, Amazon makes up ALL the sales except for those done by hand by the author from the stockpile of books he bought for himself.
Thus, if a book by a commercially published author and a book by a PA author had the same Amazon ranking — it would still mean the commerically published author has almost certainly sold thousands more books than the PA author (since one person can only handsell so many books…a commerically published author has people to do the selling, they’re called BOOKSTORE STAFF.)
But, really, I do not doubt for a moment that the whole ebay shebang might have sold 50 or so books on Amazon, heck, maybe even 100 (though that is really probably wishful thinking, big time)…I saw it mentioned on a lot of places. But don’t count too highly on it when royalities roll around or you will have very very hurt feelings.
That’s some mighty twisted logic, my friend. If Amazon rankings are your measure of success, I can see how you’d think that dubbing yourself “the top debut author” would be a real honor.
Goldberg has mentioned here before that the DM book each sell tens of thousands of copies (I think he said 50,000-60,000)- I’m willing to bet you’ve sold considerably fewer than that.
I notice you dodged many of the specific issues raised in Goldberg’s post. Gee, I wonder why…
Your comments are probably fair to some degree, but are still largely guesses.
However, since this blog seems to attract guesses from people too hurried to bother with readily available information, I’d offer a guess or two as well:
First, I’d guess that you’re wrong in asserting that a particular author can derive great returns by having their novels sell for $6.95. That’s sixty cents’ royalty at best. Multiply that by a large number, and you still get a small number. Sorry.
Furthermore, if a book demands six bucks and change, my guess is it does so for a reason, and the reason is that people won’t pay anything more for it; or, conversely, it simply doesn’t sell that well. Perhaps you might offer some stats about six buck books to prove me wrong, and I would be happy to admit it, if you would.
I would also guess that you’re not entirely correct in saying that the sales of such books on Amazon are a “tiny, tiny fraction of sales,” when Amazon is such a significant portion of total book sales, but I’d welcome any info you might direct me to that would prove me wrong.
Separately, being new to the whole business, I find it interesting the extent to which certain authors feel harshly toward others. The attempt to separate out “commercially published” versus PA, as in your note above, being an example of such. I guess I don’t fully understand the gaping difference. PA paid me a “tributary” royalty, edited and published my book, didn’t charge me anything along the way, and sent me a box full of them (free, I might add for those who would guess otherwise) when they were done. I would guess that the old publishing companies do exactly the same thing with most books/authors…but maybe I’m wrong and they only publish people they give big up front payments to.
As to royalty checks hurting my feelings, you must have missed my earlier note in which I’d indicated that all royalties from Las Cruces are going to charity anyway — fortunately I don’t need to write for a living, nor do I need any money that may come from it. It’s just for fun, and to meet nice people, and authors.
As such, you might also safely infer then, that I’m not needing to serve as BOOKSTORE STAFF, as you eluded; though I’m intrigued as to why anyone (especially a writer) would make such seemingly disparaging statements about people who sell books. I generally find them very literate, courteous, and likeable (scoring them ahead of a lot of authors, I might add). I would guess that they earn as much as most writers (save the few who manage to make it big), also, so it’s hard to see an economic basis for such class(less) warfare.
It’s been fun, and I thank you for your comments. More fun to come, so hold your nose and consider yourself forewarned.
When one posts under the name “notamoron,” is this an attempt to head off confusion?
Okay, let’s work from presumed “notamoron’s” figures and say that each DM book sells 60K, at seven bucks, and use a 10% royalty rate. My calculator spits out $42,000 of royalties. That’s not per month, or per year, but seemingly the entire amount, and that’s for a well established author. Wow. I’m impressed.
But that’s Mr. G. I won’t bother searching Amazon for books by notamoron, but I’m GUESSING he/she doesn’t do quite so well (maybe doesn’t have a book to their name, even?).
Since so many people want to shield their names (in notamoron’s case, for sake of clarity), I have to wonder how many wannabes are babbling and debating here, versus actual authors, “commercial” or otherwise.
Back to the substance of the issue, I’d be happy to back my book against anyone else’s, so if anyone (including Mr. G) would care to stand up to a challenge, let’s put some money at risk, get a decent third party to judge, and see who knows how to write a novel. Maybe the loser gives a grand to a charity selected by the winner. Anyone else feel good enough about their own work to do more than blog?
No JT you’re PA ears are wagging in the wind just fine. Your Amazon ranking boils doen to a couple books sold in any given hour at best. Everyone knows this but you it seems. As for movies rights, pfftt right, you have even less of a clue about how to go about that task.
While I don’t write novels, posters here are well-published mystery novelists with real publishers, so sure have at it. I’m sure it would be funny to see your techniques skewered in public. Others have much to their surprise.
Since Amazon’s percentage of total market for a book has been questioned, I thought I’d point to this post from Sarah Weinman’s blog from a while back:
I admit, I was pretty surprised too- I thought it would be a lot higher, but based on those numbers it would seem that Amazon only makes up about .003% of that writer’s total sales.
Did you ever submit your book–the one you feel so strongly about– to a commercial publisher? If so, what were the responses? If not, why?
I am sorry for being confusing. By commerically published, I meant using a publisher who directs the bulk of their marketing efforts towards readers/reader outlets as opposed to publishers who direct the bulk of their marketing effort toward authors. Publish America directs the bulk of their marketing efforts toward selling books to authors and gaining new author contracts — that’s considerably different from a commercial publisher.
Because PA’s marketing dollars are directed toward writers, the company does not make serious efforts to place books in the hands of readers or on the shelves of reader outlets (bookstores, book racks in outlet stores, libraries.). A PA author’s books may sometimes end up in one of these places, but not through the efforts of the publisher — the publisher’s efforts are directed elsewhere.
Why is it disparaging to say that the job of bookstore staff is to sell books?
JT, do you have one of those big box Barnes & Noble stores near you? Amazon.com sells more than two of those big box stores, but less than three. And that’s just Barnes & Noble’s biggest stores. That doesn’t count Borders, Books-a-Million, and all those independent stores where the books are actually on the shelves.
I worked at Amazon.com for several months. They’re busy there, but the number of books they move is a proportionally small.
There are many reasons people consider PublishAmerica disreputable, and it’s not because they’re jealous, bitter or trying to hold new authors down. It’s because PA is not a commercial publisher.
A condensed version of why PA is not recommended.
Okay, so Marky48 says in his first posting I’m “just another duped PA author who thinks he’s been published when he hasn’t,” and then in his followup, “While I don’t write novels…”
Marky48 seems to conclude that I’m worse off being (in his view) not-published-but-doesn’t-know-it, where he is (in my view) not-published-period.
Then he follows with, “posters here are well-published mystery novelists with real publishers…” Of course, by his own admission, that would exclude himself.
This is a difficult blog in which to determine who is real, and who is fake. I’m glad at least myself and Marky48 are willing to clarify our own situations. “Notamoron” tried, but I’m afraid the jury is still out.
Oh I’m real and not published if you count vanity presses of which PA is bigtime. You’re in the clueless phase, and at some point you’ll get the message that PA is a scam and nothing more. Right now you simply don’t know anything as your faulty logic easily illustrates.
First consider 8 percent on the net after discount which is the PA staple. Most royalties are less than a dollar for this model. It’s a vanity press with the fee on the backend. The idea is for the authors to buy their own books. Nobody else does.
Comparing that to Lee’s mass market paperbacks is a tried and true PA propaganda position. Yeah, you don’t want those “supermarket” books. You want a POD trade paperback 12 dollars higher than anything else in the market. That’s the ticket! I’m mean you’re so worth it.
And one more thing you didn’t condier in your syllogism there’s more nonfiction books out there than novels. I write nonfiction.
I call myself Not A Moron because I’m not a moron and — as evidenced by the actions chronicled in Goldberg’s post about you and your own inane comments — you are.
Let’s see, JT. Goldberg publishes two or three DM books a year. So using your figures, that’s $100,000, give or take he’s earning annually from the books. I’ll wager that’s quite a bit more than your PA books will ever see. That figure doesn’t future printings and subsidiary sales. Hell if Goldberg was only earning $5,000-a-year from his books, I’d bet that’s still a LOT more than your PA books will ever bring in.
He doesn’t have to do idiotic stunts like put the movie rights to his book up on Ebay or praise himself. He has agents shopping his rights and real, respected critics praising his work.
So the question is would I rather be Goldberg who gets PAID by publishers, has his work distributed nationally, and gets kudos from real critics and respected publications… or be some self-published wannabe whose unreadable slop sells for $12 to his friends and relatives, who declares his own work “the top debut novel” and is “shocked and flattered” when he puts the worthless movie rights to his own book up for auction on ebay?
LAS CRUCES Amazon ranking today: #343,408
THE PAST TENSE Amazon ranking today: #289,270 in Books
THE MAN WITH THE IRON-ON BADGE Amazon ranking today: #151,018
THE LESBIAN SEX BOOK Amazon ranking today: #25,201
ENCYCLOPEDIA BROWN: BOY DETECTIVE Amazon ranking today: #1,660
BE COOL by Elmore Leonard, Amazon Ranking today: #372,498 in Books
MONEY MONEY MONEY by Ed McBain, Amazon Ranking Today: #464,383 in Books
Using JT Fisher’s logic, he must be a much more successful author than either Elmore Leonard and Ed McBain!
If this is how the uninformed authors at PublishAmerica think, no wonder they don’t get how they are being screwed. Educate yourself!
Notamoron: glad for the futher clarification about your not being not a moron, and that you only chose to call yourself that to avoid confusion. I had pretty much assumed that to be the case, so you have no need to be defensive in my view.
I further respect your desire to be a published author, and, if that could happen, your preference to be Mr. Goldberg. Then you would really be doing well, by your calculations.
Thanks to everybody for disabusing me of the thought that having a book for sale, and selling it, actually makes one an author. I’ve now come to understand this community’s view that even non-authors are more authoritative on the status of being an author (and a good one), than someone who is merely writing and selling books.
Further to my dismay is that so many people consider being a “PA” author to be so much less than a non-author. You’ve got people on this site pontificating about writing, and the demerits of having PA publish your book, who aren’t published in any manner, and may not have actually written more than a poorly constructed blog, and yet they are embraced as brothers in arms. Clearly, I’ve got a lot to learn from you all.
Best regards, and thanks again for chatting about my book. I saw Drake even bothered to pull up its sales ranking today. Yes, it’s sagged recently. You all can chalk it up to my having run out of family members who can read, if you want to, because that’s what I tell everybody!
I wish you each luck in selling as many books as possible, provided you’ve written one, of course.
Talk to you again soon, I’m sure. JT
Drake, not to be blunt, but what was your sales ranking today, if I might ask? Don’t tell me you’re one of those I-know-all-about-authors-because-I-blog-on-their-sites authors, are you?
I hope you’re note playing like Imnotabigmoron, and trying to put forth that JT is not a really successful author because another author you’ve heard of (probably never met, though, have you?) is a bigger author than JT is?
Please tell me it isn’t true.
I’ve read all your comments here today and, maybe I’m a thick, but I’m honestly missing whatever point you’re trying to make.
I’ve also gone back and re-read your press release. If it was meant in jest, the joke was lost on me, too.
As others have pointed out here, Amazon sales rankings are virtually meaningless and are of little use in determining a book’s success or failure.
The bulk of my sales, as with most mass-market paperbacks, comes from brick-and-mortar stores. Only a tiny percentage of my sales comes from online transactions.
You are correct in your view that PA “authors” are accorded little or no respect among professional writers, the media, or booksellers. That’s because having your manuscript printed by PublishAmerica (or iuniverse or xlibris or the like) doesn’t make you a published author…it makes you one who has had his manuscript printed in a form that resembles a book.
The efforts of PA “authors” to be taken seriously are further undermined by ridiculous press releases like the one you distributed which, at the very best, made you look ignorant and unprofessional.
“I’ve now come to understand this community’s view that even non-authors are more authoritative on the status of being an author (and a good one)”
PA will publish a good author just as fast as a bad one, but they or the the reading public won’t know the difference. Since I’ve been labled a nonauthor I have two books for sale on Amazon. One from iUniverse even has a decent price. But they’re not novels or worth very much in this form. Sorry that’s reality pal. Deal with it and stop making a fool of yourself in public.
Further to my dismay is that so many people consider being a “PA” author to be so much less than a non-author.
That’s right, JT. Very true.
Do you know what being published by PA means? It means you mailed a manuscript to them. That’s all. It doesn’t mean you are a good or a bad writer. It only means that you knew so little about books and publishing that you got yourself scammed.
I thank you all again for an engaging discussion.
As a result of this discourse, I’ve been able to crystallize some perceptions I’d not yet had enough experience with to be convinced of. Now I can, with little doubt.
Forgive the diversion, but I’d like to offer a comparison.
Aside from my day job, which I like very much and which gives me the wherewithall to indulge – but not be dependent upon – activities such as writing, and which has nothing to do with the writing business, for what it’s worth, I enjoy two hobbies passionately: writing, and riding (cycling, to be specific).
The comparison that became clear to me last night, is that both of these activities require hard work and practice to become good at. Both also have large communities of people who share strong, even passionate, interest in them. And both are inherently “healthy” activities, relative to many other possible pursuits.
Where they differ becomes clear, and you all have helped me see the divide.
When I’m around cycling and cyclists, there is an almost universal support for the activity, and anyone participating in it, or who merely supports it from the sidelines. A race spectator is valued, someone who supports a team is revered, any rider, from youngest to oldest, fastest to slowest, is automatically considered an ally and a friend until proven otherwise. Cycling teams have their stars, and we thrill when our team, and our star, wins a race. We enjoy it just as much when a great performance gives the win to someone else that day. It’s the effort and the performance that counts most. We don’t care whether you ride Trek, Cannondale, a road bike, a mountain bike, recumbent, or a unicycle. We don’t favor you for wearing a team kit (uniform) in lieu of a t-shirt and gym shorts. There’s no real hierarchy, and it can favor the counter-culture, actually, since cyclists know they’re a bit obsessive about something the general population is largely unmoved by. And when any two or more cyclists gather, it’s hard to avoid (ask our spouses) an intensive, enthralling, rambling conversational field trip among all things cycling. In short, it’s almost always great fun and a rejuvenating experience to be a cyclist of any sort, among other cyclists.
By contrast, through interaction with writers associations and through personal conversations with both writers and aspiring writers, it seems people in this community behave quite the contrary.
First, it seems there is a constant effort to establish a caste-system, a hierarchy of who’s more important and who’s less important, and, like a pack of baboons, to ensure that the pecking order is clearly understood and adhered to. Writers seem not only willing, but anxious, to push out, and to gang up with others to collaboratively push out, other writers who seem not respectful of the tribal totem pole.
Second, the writing community doesn’t seem support an individual writer’s quests to succeed, unless they do it in the same way as those who have gone before them (ie., “stay in line”). Creativity and adaptation off of the written page are absolutely verboten, and call forth a group response (socialized rejection) to discourage innovation, or straying from the “tried and true.” Meanwhile, the pack hangs to a system that each year narrows the number of authors or striving authors, and sees its craft diminish in importance and relevance, as people find less and less interesting that which finds its way into the marketplace — and thus there are fewer readers and fewer books sold each year.
As a contrast to my other avocation, the experience of joining with a group of writers is to be immersed in a pool of insecurity, sniping, and one-upsmanship, by a horde (allowing room for some exceptions, of course) of largely classless, derisive and shallow individuals.
It seems to be a decaying system, but everybody within it is paralyzed with fear of letting it go, or allowing it to adapt, they hold on ever tighter as it withers.
Case in point, Drake went so far as to post Amazon sales rankings to demonstrate that my book sells less than some, but more than some others, and with these he concluded that it is then silly for me to feel like a “published author.”
The very fact that he pulled mine, pulled a comparable for Elmore Leonard, and mine were in the ballpark (actually higher, for the record), in my view is the most tangible and irrefutable proof that his proposition is de facto false.
If, when I first put pen to paper to attempt to write, someone had said that there would ever occur a debate, in which my sales figures would be compared to Elmore Leonard’s in any manner, I would have felt no less encouraged than if someone told me that one day I’ll post a race time that someone will ever compare to Lance Armstrong’s, or Jan Ullrich’s, or any other known professional in the field — even if the point is to argue that I still have a long way to go (and/or may or may not ever reach) their level.
Would I care at all whether mine was higher or lower — not in a million years! Just to have caused someone to have made a comparison of my results to Elmore Leonard’s, and for someone to have felt compelled to argue how relatively favorable or unfavorable my performance should be viewed on that basis, is an honor and all the positive feedback I could ever ask for.
Some personal conclusions:
i. It’s quite obvious that I seem to be having more fun than most writers I know
ii. I’m grateful for this entire process of discourse with Elaine, Drake, et. al., but discouraged for the state of the group-think. The lot seems to be self-destructive, and seems to like it that way
iii. I’ll keep writing, and hoping for further comparisons – favorable or otherwise – to ANY other writer of merit. I’m flattered even to have my promotional antics or sales results argued over
iv. Socially, I’ll be hanging out with riders — they’re inherently an upbeat lot (perhaps its all the endorphins), and not nearly so self-possessed as my writing acquaintances. [I sense you won’t miss me at the holiday parties]
v. I wish each of you the best success in your participation in the writing community, in whichever manner or role you find best suits you.
You obviously missed the point of Drake’s post. And yet at the same time, you are inadvertently making it again for him.
The point he was trying to make is that Amazon stats are utterly meaningless, for you to draw comparisons to yourself and any other other author based on them is laughably ridiculous, and that you clearly have no clue how publishing works. You have just confirmed all three points in spades.
To use a comparison you’ll understand — the mere act of riding a bicycle doesn’t make you Lance Armstrong or put you anywhere near his same league. The fact that you continue to delude yourself into thinking otherwise also underscores Goldberg’s initial observation about you — “The Self-Deluded.”
Writers are actually very supportive and inclusive. They just don’t embrace idiots, which you have (repeatedly) proven yourself to be.
I have found writers to be extraordinarily supportive of others. One way they are helping aspiring authors is by warning them about scams like PublishAmerica and the pitfalls of being taken in by them. Thank you.
I can’t imagine how I could have made you so hot under the collar — so let’s just presume the problem is with you, not me.
Furthermore, it’s intriguing that you hold yourself out as a ready spokesman for the writer community. I wonder what community’s view would be on that?
Personally, I’m not inclined to associate with any group whose spokesman goes by the self-selected monicker “Notamoron,” and I’ll put on my list of credits that there’s going by that tag who doesn’t care for me. Do me a favor and let’s keep it that way.
“in my view is the most tangible and irrefutable proof that his proposition is de facto false.”
“In your view” is key here. It isn’t false it’s a logical fallacy: you and Elmore Leonard have books of equal ranking thus you are Elmore Leonard or as good a writer.
You’re new, naive, and duped by a scam. Attacking the majority of opinion here is a hoepless cause since they’re correct. You aren’t Leonard or Lance Armstrong, just an accountant from Atlanta who knows nothing about publishing. The ebay stunt has people laughing at you and that’s all. Pity you can’t comprehend that but it’s common among those at this stage of the scam awareness scale.
As a result of this discourse, I’ve been able to crystallize some perceptions I’d not yet had enough experience with to be convinced of. Now I can, with little doubt.
Do you know how many times I’ve seen this same “You people are elitist/you don’t support fellow writers/you are afraid of new paths to publication” spiel?
PublishAmerica is not a genuine book publisher. They print people’s books for them, but they don’t publish. Genuine publishers make their money selling books to readers. PublishAmerica makes its money selling books to writers.
I posted a link farther up this page explaining why PA is a scam publisher, not a real one. The people posting in that thread (and at that board as a whole) can explain to you why your book is not considered truly published. They can also explain the differences between real publishers and PA.
The folks over there are quite nice, too, if you find the discourse here too rough. I encourage you to check it out. Seriously. Go there.
Let me try to explain one more time why you are not being treated as a fellow author. Many published writers try to help aspiring writers avoid the many pitfalls and scams of publishing. For instance, PA is not a new path for writers; it’s been around for years, and has caused a lot of misery that would have been avoided if the writers had checked them out more thoroughly.
Writers help newbies by warning them of bad paths. When you stand in the middle of a minefield telling others what a wonderful place it is for a stroll, you shouldn’t be surprised that others tell you to open your damn eyes.
JT, go to that link. Read it. Read the other threads in that forum, too. Go. Do it. There’s a lot of information there, from very credible sources. Do yourself a favor.
Well Harry that’s muddied further by membership in the “Esteemed Georgia Writer’s Association.” Anyone can join with 30 bucks just like PA, and vanity press books qualify. He’s not ready to fully understand the situation but he may at some time as others before have. July is recent. We’ll see.
More publicity is often a good thing, but it’s better if it is targeted to people who might actually buy your book. PRWeb is so flooded with press releases that it’s easy to get lost in it.
The only people who simply comb through everything on it are journalists, and the journalists who are likely to get their writing published will probably be smart enough to know that the rights would never sell. So the actual auction would probably be a non-story; if there is a story in that press release, it would probably be to use it as one part of a story about the difficulty (impossibility?) of a book from PublishAmerica becoming a best-seller.
The other group that found the press release was writing message boards. Unfortunately, they’re already familiar with the problems of PublishAmerica, including a lack of editing and a willingness to accept books regardless of quality. Sure, they’re probably accepted some good books, but they’ve also accepted books with the same 30 pages typed over and over, and Atlanta Nights, a book writen specifically to be unsellably bad. So the people on writing message boards aren’t a good target audience for a PA book, either.
And there’s the auction itself. It seemed that this one only got a couple hundred views (or did last I checked), and chances are many of them were from writers who were following this saga. A million dollar film rights auction for a book few people have ever heard of isn’t likely to draw many merely curious veiwers, other than the fans of weird and outlandish auctions.
I’m sorry, but as a publicity idea, this is not likely to reach the sort of audience who is inclined to buy your book. Would a genuinely supportive group of people actually tell you to go ahead on a scheme that they are convinced will fail?
I admire Mr. Fisher’s creativity and zest. Based solely on his posts here, it seems he has the chops to succeed as a writer.
I also agree with the majority view that his choice of “publisher” is unfortunate at best. And I have to agree that Amazon stats can be very misleading indeed. They’re fun to watch but indicative of only one thing: how well one’s book is selling via one online retailer. It is NOT representative of how the book’s sales are faring overall.
My book has been out for two years now. It’s mostly hovered in the 5-digit range on Amazon since its release. For some reason, the last couple of weeks it’s been between 2,000-5,000. That probably means it’s selling a couple of copies a day via Amazon.
I’m not planning my retirement any time soon.
Mr. Fisher will realize fairly soon that all the creative endeavours in the world won’t help a PA-printed book, except in a back-handed kind of a way. If PA gets too many requests from retail outlets for it, they may well release Mr. Fisher from his contract due to “lack of sales” (as has happened with at least one PA-printed author).
Then maybe he’ll be lucky enough to find a true commercial publisher for it, and his future work.
I wish him luck.
Good to hear from you Frank. Continued good health. This advice applies to any vanity model press including the “small” POD presses. It may be possible to get a book on a shelf but it won’t be the norm. Royalties on the net; prices based on page count, Ingram and so on are all PA style methods, although not quite as bad. Zumaya, Mundania, and the like just won’t be in any store.
Hell, I’ve looked for Frank’s book on both coasts and it isn’t there. And it’s from McGraw-Hill. These publishing schemes just aren’t viable from the writer’s end, which is where we are.
Your marketing techniques are entertaining and have attracted attention to your book; congratulations on that.
Anders I’m afraid there’s no attention at all that counts.