Sunday, November 11, 2012

Diogenes:The Internet:Writer’s block: a prelude to a rant

Diogenes:The Internet:Writer’s block: a prelude to a rant

I recently embarked on a search. Likened to Diogenes search for an honest man. Except that I’m pretty sure that that would be at best an Oxymoron being that Diogenes was a Cynic that eschewed all things man made. and since my search was confined to the internet… Well, you can’t get more man made than that.

The entire construct of the internet is a man made thing down to the very construct of all the rhetoric. I say rhetoric in the most simplistic notion of it being any exchange of words between people.

Words, words. There is a never ending flow of them across the great divide of wire and air and bits and nibbles. What there is not is a flow of intelligent information. Things of real consequence seem to be jammed up into the system. Log jammed by the rush of too much runoff from the flood of viscous unceasing storms of opinion.

Into this maelstrom I dove looking for some answers to simple questions about publishing. There are any number of sites that will suppose to tell you they will unravel the mystery and put to rest the myths so many have been victim to. If only there were some truth or light to that very claim.

Sadly, no matter where we land we must take salt with us.

In this instance- having written and published a novel- it has taken little time to discover that the hardest part is not in the writing but in the marketing. To this I was led to believe that I should hold myself responsible because I did not patiently await, as the rest have, for the arms of traditional publishing to save me from such folly.

There is no end to the folly one might encounter through such deviation.

Thankfully I take responsibility and this search is not for justification but mostly for clarification. At first I found a wealth of knowledge amongst some of my own favorite popular traditionally published authors. I could list some sites, but I chose to make the reader search. In many cases these authors are still reliant upon their publishers and are sticking their necks out, or so it seems, to make these claims.

Many if not all, when they chose to, will relate the same story. The benefit they obtained in traditional publishing was that they received a check up front with promise of potential for more royalties after the initial royalties were able to pay the up frontage. Most will explain they never saw another dime. Some will mention that the three readers that did buy their books are some of their most ardent fans. The important and next reveal is what I was looking for.

They all were quite upfront in saying that the majority of the marketing was left to them. Though the publisher does offer some, it seems mostly contingent on what they have available in the budget. Guess what. A new author does not garner much in budget for these ‘standard’ services.

I felt a bit of weight lift there knowing that I was not doing any less or more than the traditionally published author. Now though comes the wrinkle.

The traditional publishers would prefer us to believe differently and have gone to some extent to obfuscate this in hazy claims to always giving marketing services.

It did not take long to run across some interesting ‘Professionals’ who reside in the most insidious part of this internet, The Forums.

There are many professed insiders who have ‘worked’ in the industry as editor-agent-or somewhere within publishing. They have found it necessary to continually remind us of the myths of the industry.

I will only list this one and I’ll try not to let my opinion guide which one.
It’s a good article and sounds quite believable but suffers of vague fogginess in several areas one of those being the marketing end. There seems to be information missing to refute the actual claims in the alleged myth.

Personally after reading several of these I tend to go with the published authors that I know and the understanding that there is more truth in the truth we leave out of our explanation.

I did manage to come across one author whom I would like to share. This author seemed to have no problem with debunking the same myths and it makes a precious counterpoint to the people in the other half of the industry.

To highlight the frustrating and the sometime useless nature of the web I’d like to share this one. These make me wonder which planet these people are on.

I’ll grant this is old, but even then the only thing worth noting is the graphic at the top which makes some sense.

This article seems to suggest that anyone publishing e-books away from the traditional publishers is yet another scammer from some there-in named African country. Not to mention calling most self publishers plagiarists.I'll grant that he may mainly be referring to people scabbing things off the internet and charging for it which is a whole other ball of wax.

For those who need balance there is this one:

I’m not sure which way they are leaning or what they are selling.

The only certainty I have found is that by the strength of your salt, the reader has to try to discern what might be the truth. And I for one have found it to be hard to gain that from inside the internet.

What I did find is more questions to ask as to more good reasons there might be for self publishing.

One of those is control of the final look and feel of the book. I’ll leave two interesting posts on that thought.

If its about control…
Another view on control-makes you want to read the book
I confess the second post made me want to read the book.

For a number of good reasons Diogenes would not be surfing the net today to find his honest man. But, if the honest man were there caught in the log jamb who is to say if Diogenes might or might not try to bring him safely out and away.

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