Tuesday, August 21, 2018

Yog's Law and Corollary

Yog's Stash of Cash

If your “publisher” is asking you for money, something has gone horribly wrong, and hopefully you've had your contract vetted by an attorney before you signed it. Even if it’s $20 to cover some kind of submission or something, you should run, far and fast. 

When applied to a traditional publisher, Yog's Law is in effect—Money flows TOWARD the writer.  The writer is only responsible for the writing. The publisher is responsible for everything else.

When applied to a self-publishing, or any of the shades in between, then it gets a bit trickier.

Traditional Publishing
With the old school, the author of the work should never expect to pay a dime to have the book published. Once the manuscript has been picked up, a contract signed, and the wheels set in motion, the author’s work is essentially done.  Why not?  Well, the publisher takes on a lot on the gamble that everyone will make money. So, being an “old hand” (hopefully) at this, they are willing to take on the editing, the cover art, the marketing, etc. for the publisher, and in trade for all this, they take a percentage of the profit. All of this is removed from the hands of the artist, and “experts” take over so that the book can make money.

That's the payoff/trade-off for a publisher taking on a writer and their work.

This also means that the writer may not have as much say in things like cover art, taglines, marketing strategy, etc. The only caveat to all this is that any good author will either start their own marketing campaign or be ready to participate in the marketing to help sales.

No reason. I just really like gender-swap
Poe Dameron!
This all shifts when we change publishing tactics.

If you're doing it yourself, then Yog's law becomes somewhat moot, because the writer has now become the publisher.  In this capacity, the writer must take on all those other roles, or hire them as a publisher would. Cover art is either self-made, on your time and with your dime, or it’s contracted to an artist. Editing is either spell-check and a good eye, or it’s farmed out to a professional editor.

Since writers are not always the best copy-editors, cover-artists, etc., it is more often advisable for the writer to hire those aspects out.

To put it a bit more simply

Yog’s Law: Money flows TOWRD the writer.

Corollary to Yog’s Law: For self-publishing, money is CONTROLLED by the writer.

Tuesday, August 7, 2018

E Pluribus Unum

Real News doesn't care for you either.

The descent into madness continues.  I’ve never been a big “Freedom of Press” kind of guy. I mean, why fight for something you already have? But since I’ve started defending the press against the attacks of the President—you know, the guy who swears to “preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States”—and especially since he labelled them the “Enemy of the People” its been a bit worrisome.

Let’s be clear.  No one used that phrase before Trump tweeted it, and it followed a meeting with New York Times president A.G. Sulzberger who felt he had to draft an entire statement to better frame his confusion and the conversation with President Trump:

I told him that although the phrase “fake news” is untrue and harmful, I am far more concerned about his labeling journalists “the enemy of the people.” I warned that this inflammatory language is contributing to a rise in threats against journalists and will lead to violence.

I repeatedly stressed that this is particularly true abroad, where the president’s rhetoric is being used by some regimes to justify sweeping crackdowns on journalists. I warned that it was putting lives at risk, that it was undermining the democratic ideals of our nation, and that it was eroding one of our country’s greatest exports: a commitment to free speech and a free press.

A.G. Sulzberger, July 29, 2018

There certainly is an "Enemy of the People" here.
Seeing the hatred Trump has engendered and his incitements to violence is too much. A lot of what Trump has done can be undone. There is hope in that thought. Reviving the diplomatic corps, reversing decisions that will impact the environment, renewing our relationships with our long-standing allies, and rebuilding the bridged Trump has burned will take time but all are manageable.

The fear and hatred of the press will take generations to untangle.

Worse, it allows anyone with an opinion fueled by fear, hatred, racism, and xenophobia to justify their actions. Trump is practically inviting violence. I don’t like to give into hyperbole, but I’m concerned we'll see journalists killed for no better reason than their profession.

Even Fox News’ Shep Smith couldn’t sit by and allow the administration’s attacks on journalism in general to go un-remarked:

Trump isn’t the first Republican, or even the first US president to attack the media—that’s a dance that is older than the country. His demonizing of any journalist who disagrees with him has driven the knife into the back of public discourse over and over again. His supporters have so willingly drunk and bathed in Trump’s language of hate, their belief of a dishonest press, that they can now handwave away any disparaging remarks, no matter how well founded, researched, and supported by evidence.
He didn't even sing it.

This last is the most troubling of all.  When facts, which have no political party, are thrown out because they conflict with the “truth of Trump” and journalists have to legitimately fear for themselves and their families, we’ve gone beyond mere “problem” into a full crisis.

To paraphrase Abraham Lincoln: A house divided against itself, cannot stand. I believe this government cannot endure, permanently, half evidence-based truth and half Trumpian lies. I do not expect the Union to be dissolved — I do not expect the house to fall — but I do expect it will cease to be divided. It will become all one thing or all the other.

Wednesday, August 1, 2018

The Dark Archer by Robert Cano

Dark, but also purple.

My buddy has a book out, and you might like it.  Here’s an excerpt from The Dark Archer:

Bene had lived a life of service to those whom he deemed worthy.  Preju was the most powerful kingdom in Aariad.  West of The Spine, largely unknown, had long been relegated to myth. 

But Bene had been betrayed by the one he had given everything for.  And now he was immortal.  Under his new form, he suffers without feeding off of the living, but he also has no desire to kill.  He soon finds that his powers are mostly beyond his control.

All he wants is the chance to die like any mortal.  He wishes only for an end to his torment.  And his becoming a wraith only makes this desire that much stronger.  His is a story of darkness, but not of evil, but that of sorrow and despair...

About the Author
Handsome devil!
A writer or a storyteller? A poet? An artist who has chosen to paint with words, Robert Cano began a journey some years ago which has finally culminated in him finding himself in a position to see the journey gain momentum. Having spent many years studying the art of the written word, he now seeks to share his worlds and mind with the world.

A magus with a staff in the shape of a pen and a sword of paper, he weaves his magical worlds. The world of Arduil awaits you.