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  1. #61
    Keeper of the Hikari Radthorne's Avatar
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    I've heard that Mel Brooks is staging a musical version of "Young Frankenstein" here in the Seattle area...

    I think it's the same thing that promotes a new Mustang that looks like the old Mustang. Innovation that works is harder than copying old stuff that did work. But that's not a new conclusion by any means. And we see it in our own book field all the time.

    I think the lesson to be learned (at least from the media side) is to finagle contracts that let you be a participant (actor, director, lighting guy, special effects, whatever) in all the planned sequels, but in which you have an escape clause to let you out if the first one tanks.

  2. #62
    Fulgurous Moderator KatG's Avatar
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    Speaking of the precipitous Death of Movies, I've been amused at the cyclical Death of the Book outbreak we've had lately. Seems the Atlanta, Georgia newspaper in the States, realizing that book publishers and booksellers were never going to spend much in print advertising -- certainly nothing like the millions spent by the movie people -- decided to toss their book review and lay off their book editor. The southern regional author and publisher community -- the most successful of regional communities -- had a Read-In protest over this, which got the media's attention and led to the Is the Book Dying articles that have periodically appeared all throughout my life. And now, on the Web!

    I don't mind the Death of the Book stuff, because it gets authors on t.v. Salmon Rushdie was just on the Colbert Report talking about it. I would like to see more media attention paid to more alarming news, such as Borders shutting down many of its superstores, but we take what we can get.

  3. #63
    Keeper of the Hikari Radthorne's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by KatG View Post
    Speaking of the precipitous Death of Movies, I've been amused at the cyclical Death of the Book outbreak we've had lately. Seems the Atlanta, Georgia newspaper in the States, realizing that book publishers and booksellers were never going to spend much in print advertising -- certainly nothing like the millions spent by the movie people -- decided to toss their book review and lay off their book editor. The southern regional author and publisher community -- the most successful of regional communities -- had a Read-In protest over this, which got the media's attention and led to the Is the Book Dying articles that have periodically appeared all throughout my life. And now, on the Web!

    I don't mind the Death of the Book stuff, because it gets authors on t.v. Salmon Rushdie was just on the Colbert Report talking about it. I would like to see more media attention paid to more alarming news, such as Borders shutting down many of its superstores, but we take what we can get.
    Another symptom of the times: publishing as reality show. As in, in order to get published you have to avoid getting voted off the island. Bookseller Chick had in her blog a few days ago a column headed, "Gathering Information on Gather.com" that outlines how Simon and Schuster have this lovely idea for everybody submitting their stories on line and everybody voting on who stays and who goes. I see this as an evil plot whereby the publishers try to prove that they really don't need to be paying for all those editors anyway, they can just move the whole function to the web and get it done for free...

    Oh, and speaking of web weirdness, if you really want your blood to curdle, check this out: a local news website in L.A. is outsourcing the local news of their community to reporters in India, all strictly to cuts costs. I'm sure the folks in Bangalore will really be able to relate to the local happenings in Pasadena...

  4. #64
    Master Obfuscator Dawnstorm's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Radthorne View Post
    blog a few days ago a column headed, "Gathering Information on Gather.com" that outlines how Simon and Schuster have this lovely idea for everybody submitting their stories on line and everybody voting on who stays and who goes. I see this as an evil plot whereby the publishers try to prove that they really don't need to be paying for all those editors anyway, they can just move the whole function to the web and get it done for free...
    Has public voting ever been a reliable indicator of sales? (With all those casting shows it's the show that makes money, not the resultant "star". Of the Austrian and German variety, few of the participants had staying power, and those that did were invariably runners-up.) Voting with a click is not the same as voting with a wallet. Let them try that. I doubt it will work out, commercially. A combination of "Baen free library" + POD might work better.

    Of course, I have no experience whatsoever marketing books.

  5. #65
    Just Another Philistine Hereford Eye's Avatar
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    This could be a lemons and lemonade situation. Her Greatness *, Dawnstorm, and you, Mr. Radical Thorn, all have day jobs that greatly reduce the time available for writing. If you each employ this technique, you'll have lots more time for other things such as entertaining significant others, painting, attending concerts, doing CGI, et al. Simply outsource a chapter here and there and be amazed at how quickly that 200K-word novel comes together.

    * After TLWSHLWM and I watched her Mother's Day present yesterday afternoon, a copy of The Queen with Helen Mirren, I am now supplied with a new mental image of Her Greatness. The final sitting room scene between the Queen and Tony Blair seems to me the perfect capsule of Her Greatness and the rest of us.

  6. #66
    Fulgurous Moderator KatG's Avatar
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    LOL, Simon & Schuster might want to work on fixing their utterly horrible website first before launching a web contest. It's a similar idea to stuff that's been done before with contests, though. It lets them have a slush pile without having to devote staff to it. Then they can publish the "winner" in a special series. It could be a launching pad for some authors. And at least they are attempting to use the Web.

    What I would really like to see, though, is for them to stop concentrating on debuts and new ms. and try to really make use of the Web for the books on their list. But you get the feeling more and more that they just don't have a clue how to do that.

    * After TLWSHLWM and I watched her Mother's Day present yesterday afternoon, a copy of The Queen with Helen Mirren, I am now supplied with a new mental image of Her Greatness. The final sitting room scene between the Queen and Tony Blair seems to me the perfect capsule of Her Greatness and the rest of us.
    Is this me or Sheepie? I wouldn't mind out-sourcing actually. Can you start on Chapter 1 for me, HE? (Oh, and anybody want a cat? Get off the damn desk, Bob! No, not on the printer!)

  7. #67
    Keeper of the Hikari Radthorne's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by KatG View Post
    Can you start on Chapter 1 for me, HE? (Oh, and anybody want a cat? Get off the damn desk, Bob! No, not on the printer!)
    Oh, goodie! I would love to see HE work in KatG's prose universe. The results would be... so very different...

  8. #68
    Just Another Philistine Hereford Eye's Avatar
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    The only issues that I can see is that Her Greatness would have to send me the outline for Chapter 1 and then we'd need to negotiate the number of martinis appropriate to the effort. If it's a three martini effort then I cannot commit to any deadlines.

  9. #69
    Fulgurous Moderator KatG's Avatar
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    Outline? Outline? I have no time for these things you call outlines. Make something up. Then I'll pass it on to the next contractor.

    Of course, that probably is a three martini effort. You know, this outsourcing thing is complicated.

  10. #70
    Just Another Philistine Hereford Eye's Avatar
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    Outline for Chapter 1:

    Opening scene involves Hero contemplating the universe's navel eventually concluding that its very existence implies alternate universes, some of which may not rely on the magic of pregnancy even though the one he occupies and at least one other obviously do.
    Reverie interrupted by villain's telepathic notice that the Hero has t-mail, the obligatory Statement of Evil Intent/Grandiose Scheme to Conquer Everything and Everyone with express purpose of humiliating each and all.*
    Next scene introduces the heroine set - triplets of varying ages as they are affected by time stunting incurred through unsupervised sampling of their grandfather's pipe - attempting to agree on their abduction by said villain. Two are for it but the third has the keys to the chariot.
    Final scene depicts the hero's anguish when he discovers his favorite heroine has been taken by the villain leaving behind the two with whom he cannot communicate on any basis <not yet clear whether it is the villain or the hero who cannot communicate with these two>. Yet, he must communicate if they are to save the third, not to mention the world.

    Seems like a two martini effort to me.

    *Villain remains anonymous through the first six books though the hero should know that anyone knowledgeable of his IP <intelligence portal> must be someone very close to him. In time, he suspects one of the two available triplets but, as with most heros, he is wrong. The real villain is his pet Black Labrador whose motivation involves deep water deprivation.

  11. #71
    Keeper of the Hikari Radthorne's Avatar
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    Amazing. It reads just like KatG's real first chapter!


  12. #72
    Fulgurous Moderator KatG's Avatar
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    Oh please, please, please write this. I'll buy you vodka. It sounds marvelous! But the hero needs a sidekick.

  13. #73
    Registered User Dazzlinkat's Avatar
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    oooooooooo wonder how this chapter will be after all the vodka is swilled? hehe

  14. #74
    Just Another Philistine Hereford Eye's Avatar
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    Vodka?!! You're thinking I should drink vodka martinis? Has the East Coast deteriorated thus far from a state of grace that when one mentions martinis they leap to the conclusion that we must be talking vodka martinis? I blame this on Applebee's and their infinite variety of fruity nonsense that they have the gall to name martinis.
    Please refer to Mr. James Bond, the man who taught me the meaning of martini, any further such heretical inferences. He, at least, is licensed to kill.

  15. #75
    Fulgurous Moderator KatG's Avatar
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    Fine, I'll buy you gin. Where's my opening paragraph? (I haven't drunken any alcohol since 1999, thanks to medication I'm on that does not allow it, so my main reference is Sex and the City reruns.)

    I was going to protest being compared to Queen Elizabeth, but after snorting and ranting in the Writing Forum today, I have noticed that I have indeed turned into Queen Elizabeth. Is there a twelve-step program for that?

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