Paid Fanfiction? Wait what?

What do you guys think about this? What do you think it means for the publishing world?

In other news. Anne Rice must be spitting venom.

My Journey Through Goodreads (Part 1)

Hello my darlings,

Wow! Three blog posts in one day? I’m getting good at this. Anyway, this has been in no real way affected by the mood instilled by my previous post. But I have been meaning to write a little bit about how I am dealing with Goodreads and I figured today would be as good a day as any to do so.

So here are a few things that I believe are the merits of Goodreads, plus a few things that are not so savory and lessons I am learning along the way.

1) The Customer Service

I am sure you have heard me say this before, but Goodreads customer service is the most horrible thing in the world. They must really encourage independent problem solving, because that is what they seem to promote. I have had several problems in the past that, after hours of trying to solve it on my own, finally lead me to resort to emailing them (which is never fun, I assure you. Try grinding your teeth and admitting to being an idiot to when you usually pride yourself on being really good at the internet). I will receive a reply a 1 – 2 weeks later. Sometimes it takes even longer than that. My question is usually summed up within a paragraph that usually says the “so sorry! we can’t help” and offering an alternative solution that is not ideal but will have to do. I appreciate the whole “real people” aspect of this job but … they really need to do something about this. 2 weeks into a project I don’t even CARE about my previous problem anymore, as I have more than likely already come up with some alternative means of fixing it. They are grossly understaffed for the magnitude of their users.

2) Promotional Value

I will give Goodreads this – it is a valuable tool for my book promotion. Whenever a copy of one of my books gets bought I usually see that someone has marked it as “to-read” or “Currently reading”, which gives me the satisfaction of knowing that people care enough to take the time to look it up and mark it on their personal shelves, share it with their friends, post reviews, etc. Even if the reviews are not always what I want to hear, it is publicity – and any publicity is good publicity (right, right??). Readers on Goodreads seem to be more inclined to leave reviews there than people who just buy from Amazon. Plus, with all the giveaway and affordable ad opportunities, I think in this respect the Goodreads service is the author’s friend.

3) Misguided Good Intentions (of individuals)

Ok, so this might be a bit unfair to land in the Goodreads post. I probably should make another blog post altogether entitled “My journey as an author” or some such rot. But the majority of this I have dealt with on Goodreads so I am posting it under this topic. Don’t like my sense of justice? Forgive me I’m sure. But there are a lot of good intentions that go awry in some groups on Goodreads, particularly groups that offer a review for a review. Even though they may spend countless hours working out any possible kink that may arise in the system, there is always some sort of flaw, and I find it to be this: an author can post a book to the “read my book please” (not actual thread title) thread, but only IF they will pick up and review the book of the person who posted before them. This leads to many authors (not excluding myself) picking up books that are not in their genre and not even in their remote area of interest in order to promote their own work. And while reading outside of your comfort zone is sometimes a good thing, it has been known to leaving me bored and then guilty, and then I will look for something good to say about the book because I am convinced it is my fault that I even picked up a book I had convinced myself sounded interesting. And you don’t want to leave a bad review just because you didn’t like the book’s genre (if it deserves a bad review because of other X amount of flaws, that is a different story). But then, some people do leave bad or low reviews because the book really wasn’t their style, but they will mask it as something else (not being able to relate to the characters, it wasn’t fast-paced, there weren’t enough vampires). MY POINT IS, is that one must use this tool with caution. Trading book reviews (I have come to learn through several bad experiences) is a great idea in theory but it must be practiced with extra caution. I have had spiteful authors leave bad reviews for my book just because I left one for theirs (which is why I don’t do review swaps anymore).

4) THEY NEVER DELETE ANYTHING.

Seriously. Goodreads never deletes anything. Never, ever, ever register a book in their library if you don’t want it to stick around FOREVER.

I think that is enough for right now. Have any other authors had experiences like this? Do you agree/disagree with any of these points? Let it be known in the comments!

Your most adored,

C.N.F.

Really.

Hello my darlings,

It has been a day. And I mean it has been a day … from the fact that Hulu only offers Desperate Housewives seasons 1-2 to the fact that my great-grandmother fell (again) and had to be taken to the ER, to the fact that this is my second or third attempt at writing this post and WordPress is showing very well how much it wishes to see me suffer. The ONLY consolation at this moment is that my makeup looks pretty stellar. But you probably can’t even tell from the quality of this picture.

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So my great-grandmother fell (again) today. The parenthetical aside implies that she has fallen many times, and each time the situation gets more intense. Well, today she fell and they had to taken her to the ER because she was showing signs of a stroke. Now, I live in a town of no significance and the great achievement of our hospital reads on a certificate “Lazy as F**k”. So they bring in my great-grandmother who is a woman of 86, her eyes are rolling in different directions, she can’t answer their questions clearly, she has fallen as skinned half of her elbow / forearm so there is BLOOD everywhere (though they STILL insist upon taking her blood pressure from that arm, causing her to bleed on the instrument, on her clothes, on the hospital bed. Lots of blood loss for a woman who is – did I mention a diabetic? And she hadn’t eaten breakfast?). She can’t walk, and yet all they decide to do is run a few tests, do a scan, and determine that after a few wisecracks from the doctor (surrounded by his non-existent nurses) about how she shouldn’t fall again they decide to SEND THIS WOMAN HOME. I’m sorry, but people are swarming in droves to universities, pumping money into the schools’ pockets, all to become doctors and nurses for a career that basically amounts to “tell the old woman to stop falling”???? I’m sorry, I could have told you that she needs to stop falling and I haven’t even made it through an entire Robin Cook novel. Like, ever. I don’t think I’m asking for much. Just some mediocre to decent quality healthcare.

I’m sorry. I am just tired of seeing my relatives pay to have assholes look at them and smirk at their heart problems, strokes, cancer, and other such apparent trifles. I’m also tired of seeing my grandmother and my mother (two of my best friends) being put through the wringer because on top of their own lives and health problems, they have this kind of thing set on their shoulders.

Thank you for letting me rant. I just needed to get that off my chest.

Your most adored,

C.N.F.

Services Offered

Hello my darlings,

This is me creating a post for easier re-blogging because the last one was kind of crammed with too much personal information. So from my other services page, this is a list of what I have to offer. Please feel free to contact me via my Contact page or my email address cnfaust@outlook.com 🙂

Formatting

eBook: For $10 an hour I will format your eBook for Amazon KDP (or various other eBook distributors, including Lulu and Nook). This usually takes me between 2 – 4 straight hours depending on what kind of shape the book is in when I get it. Work hours can be considerably less.

Print: For $12 an hour I will format your book for Amazon Createspace (or various other print distributors, including Lulu). This usually takes me between 4 – 6 hours depending on the shape the book is in when I get it, and what kind of things need to be done. Work hours can be considerably less.

Design

Covers: Need a cover for your book? Let me help! For $10 an hour, I can do full eBook covers (best for Amazon, B&N, Kobo, etc). For $20 an hour, I can do full covers in any size format. (Full cover includes: back cover, front cover, and spine). Estimated work hours: 2-4 hours for ebook covers, 3-6 hours for the full spreads. Here are some examples of my work.

Bookmarks: Yes, I can craft bookmarks as well. For $7 an hour, estimated 2-4 hours worth of work. Here is an example of my work.

Business cards: Need business cards? I have you covered! For $7 an hour, just let me know the size! Estimate 2 – 3 hours of work. Here is an example:

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Computer Backgrounds: For $5 an hour, I can conjure up computer backgrounds featuring YOUR name, the title of the book in question, your splendid cover art, your chosen color schemes, and any quote you choose. Here is an example of my work:

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Thanks to anyone who reblogs this! You guys are a wonderful help to me.

Your most adored,

C.N.F.