Saturday Evening Post

What a week! So many things getting back to normal around here, I hardly know where to begin. I suppose the best place is the aversion of the power outage. Grab a cuppa and snuggle into a rocker. I have already stoked the fire.

Last Saturday, I was open about the possibility M3 could go dark. I was having a hard time holding onto things around here between fixing the things which I knew were completely shattered and trying to reassemble the missing portion of the crew we once had to add fuel to our discussions and lively banter.


To say the messages you sent me were uplifting is an epic fail of the English language. They went far above being merely supportive and endorsing. They were inspiring. Thank you for such wonderful support.

All of them pretty much blew my prevailing theory everything I write is merely to get it out of my head. You amaze me with some of the things you take away from the series. No, I am not talking about in a Friday Follies kind of way.

It helped me decide to stop chasing the wayward and let them find their way here, or not. If you are one who is here tonight, but only got here by accident, let me know in the comments so we can fix your subscription.

In the Blind

If you never had cause to know what goes into building and running a website, you need to hug the next programmer or webmaster you meet. Not shake hands. Hug. Air kisses probably are not ill-advised.

I am just around half-way through redirecting, fixing and updating the posts which migrated here. It has forced me to admit something beyond my Mediterranean fruit fly sized attention span and my abhorrence for code:

I happen to hate doing things in the order someone else chose.” 

Yes, I want to shoot a spitball at Caesar. Chronological order sounds like a fabulous way to make sure you do not miss anything…but it is…


For all of the thoughts on time and scheduling and getting things done without feeling like your brain has been sucked through a sieve, I am not a fan of doing anything in a prescribed order. Yes, this even applies to putting things together. I am the one who makes the rosettes for the cake before I ice it.

There is logic in that. I promise.


It has led me to one conclusion. Honestly, more than one, but one in particular I want to share. We covered some amazing things. You made some of the most enlightening comments. From them both, there will be at least one book.

When I started on this blogging expedition, I really never had much of a plan. (See whole mind dump theory.) This is partly due to my complete lack of interest in anything once I have eaten it. (There is much deep symbolism in that statement if you think about it.) It is also due to my proclamation above about doing things via someone else’s plan. Niche writing be damned, even if I like waffles.

I did know bits and pieces from the encyclopedia were, when coupled with other bits, not entirely excruciating. Something happened, though.

You supplied a few bridges, asked a few (dozen) questions and used the sounding board. Music was born. And not just the psychotic kind Mantra orchestrates. You even nudged her toward a different end of the musical spectrum…sometimes.


1. Much fewer hours playing video games. While this will stifle my creativity a bit, I know it is something I need to do.

2. More hours writing away from M3. This means I have to finish the retrofitting before I head home for my daughter’s wedding.

3. Less concern over 1,000,000. If you have been watching the crawl toward a million words, you will notice it has screeched nearly to a halt. I do not get credit for the code. I also do not get credit for the words I write elsewhere.

4. Plan a large party for books. This goes hand-in-hand with…

5. Finish research on opening book store.

The Book Maker

When I told Bear what I want to name the book store, he nearly dropped the telephone laughing. In and of itself, that maniacal laughter let me know I had chosen well. My research is also including what it will take to be a micro-publisher. I want to be putting books into print for others whilst I am publishing my own creations.

I am listening.

I ask everyone I meet who has a book, published traditionally or self-published, one question: Do you think the traditional publishing industry looks down on self-published material as inferior? The answer is the same, but always with different caveats.

  • because indies are not doing enough editing.
  • because indies rush to get to press without beta readers.
  • because there are too many unresolved references in the story.
  • because there is no real cover art.
  • because there are too many typos.
  • because they want to see their names on a book, any book.
  • because it is.

Part of my decision to publish other people’s work is not wanting to be an editor on more projects than I have now, but wanting to see more indies get their good work in the hands of an audience. All of this deciding has added a new section to my book store idea.

Your Turn

You know, or at least you should know, I value your opinions. So, let’s hear your answers to these questions:

  1. Do you think the idea of opening a book store is stepping into the last century?
  2. What do you think the biggest help for an indie author is?
  3. If you were looking for a book just for fun, what would be the first one you would pick up?
  4. Would you shop a digital section of a traditional book store, either in the store or online?

I hope your weekend is off to a wonderful and relaxing start. Until next time, see you in the comments.
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© Red Dwyer 2012
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  1. I think I just stepped off the plane and into a storm. I saw something about you changing blogs or websites or fixing one. Or something. . . I think. It’s all a bit confusing. Maybe I should just step out and come back in again.

    1. Old fashioned, but it could work if it offers something the online ones don’t. Hard to be competitive on prices, though, I would think.

    2. Editiong. I mean editing. And grammerification.

    3. One about Wombies.

    4. Sure, why not?
    Binky recently posted..Power Lemonade StandMy Profile

    • Red

       /  March 24, 2012

      That feeling of complete disorientation is completely normal, Binky. We have a wide spectrum here.

      1. They all do…atmosphere and really good coffee.
      2. Amen!
      3. We need to put you all in an anthology.
      4. Cool.

  2. authormjlogan

     /  March 24, 2012

    Are you talking about a real, walk-in-the-door-smell-the-books type of place? Or some sort of online thing?

    I’ll stop back late. Going out for a change.


    • Red

       /  March 24, 2012

      Have a great time. And yes, a smell the books place.

      • authormjlogan

         /  March 25, 2012

        The food was awesome, the service just as awesome and the bill was… O.M.G! Fortunately, I did not accidentally order wine from the list that started at $1500 and went up from there.

        I love bookstores. Not B&N or places like that. Those are not bookstores. Those are … something else. I do not think that opening a real bookstore is stepping into the last century, but I also think one must step carefully. More than anything, this type of store needs a location with lots of traffic, but probably not in a mall.

        I’d shop a digital section if it had offerings not available in a real book. But I’d probably prefer a store website for digital shopping over going into the store to shop for digital titles.



  3. authormjlogan

     /  March 24, 2012

    As far as help, Indie authors need two things. Beta readers who understand what Beta reading is, and editors who have affordable rates and don’t require a first-born child as down payment.

    Indie authors need to understand that these things might cost a few dollars, but there is no substitute for them.


    • Red

       /  March 24, 2012

      Just curious, what do you think a good alternative to the firstborn payment plan is? I have a couple.

      • authormjlogan

         /  March 25, 2012

        Here is where I am coming from…

        I’ve seen professional editors who want printed manuscripts, double spaced, 12 pt type and 1 1/2 inch margins with the first line of each paragraph indented 1/2 inch. This turns into about 10-25 sentences per page, or 250 to 350 words.

        They charge $3-5 per page, which makes editing a 75,000 word manuscript at least 750.00 and as much as $1250.

        Now, you can argue that professional editing is worth that much, or that it is not. That is not the point. How many indie authors have that kind of money to throw around? Not many.

        Many independent books will never come close to recouping that investment.

        You’re stuck between a rock and a hard place. Edit it yourself and hope for the best, or hire the pro, pay through the nose and probably never get your money back in sales.

        Indie’s need a middle ground.
        Someone who will first beta read their manuscript, make notes and send it back for revision. After revision, it gets edited for grammar and possibly sentence structure. By exchanging manuscripts online via email, the author saves printing costs and gets a by-the-word price that doesn’t gouge the writer, but produces a piece of work that only needs formatting for publication.

        • Red

           /  March 25, 2012

          So how about a co-op? To get, you give. Sounds entirely doable. And makes the rates better. Do you think someone would beta-read a book for $XX and do you think author’s would get their money out of a $XX edit? This sounds like it is going somewhere….

          • authormjlogan

             /  March 25, 2012

            I’m not sure how a co-op would work.

            I do like to think the people I edit for receive fair value. I am not a Grammar Nazi, nor is my grammar always perfect. But if there is one thing I’ve learned, the rules matter most if not following them trips up the reader. And that was not easy to learn.

            I was crushed when a short I wrote did poorly and when I asked why, I was told by more than one that no one talks like my characters talked. They were flat, lifeless. I had spent hours making sure every spoken word was perfect, and I ruined it.

            A co-op. I’d really like to hear how you think that could be done. What would it take? How does it work?


          • Red

             /  March 25, 2012

            That is not too uncommon an issue, Mike. Dialog is one of my big struggles, which is why I practice it in poetry. I have to remember my characters do not speak as I do, nor do they speak as I write (which is not ironically precisely how I speak).

            The way I see the co-op would be taking the slush pile (which is growing ATM) and dividing it amongst the authors. Not sure if the best solution is a direct trade, or one slightly more random, but I am looking into ways to harness semi-public documents as the editing platform. The model I use is really beneficial (someone else’s word) for not mucking up the style, whilst still providing Nazi support where needed.

            The way it would work best is authors submit with a small fee and those willing to take on more reading/editing than writing could reap from the fee. I think it only fair, the reader/editor receive an editing credit on at least the (c) page. This makes every production lift the reputation of both.

            Still have this on the ironing board to find all the wrinkles….

  4. Your questions spur more thoughts that my brain can adequately process at once….

    So, I say… YES…a smell the books kind of store is an amazing idea…especially if it is place to find unique reads from unique authors AND there is an online shopping people like me can shop (without the smell, unfortunately) and upload digitally.
    Emily recently posted..The Hips Without Any ControlMy Profile

    • Red

       /  March 24, 2012

      I am considering a two fold portion to the digital section…hmm.

  5. Hiya Red. Ok..answers to your questions:

    1- I hate to say it but yes. Everything is going digital and I have no reason to believe differently for books.
    2- Biggest help for Indies is to provide them with sound advice, feedback, etc. (I have been trying to find a couple of beta readers for my WIP and I haven’t been able to yet).
    3- Maybe Hunger Games because I haven’t read it yet.
    4- If I was going to a traditional book store, it would most likely be to buy a book, not a probably no.

    Hope that helps! Wendy

    • Red

       /  March 24, 2012

      It does. I am in the concept stage, so all opinions matter. Thank you for taking this seriously and answering honestly. I appreciate the feedback.

  6. I have a friend who just recently got published. I, however, have not gotten there yet. Although, I do have some great book ideas for sometime in my life when I can put them together. It could happen. Also, yes I would, and do, shop online for books all the time.

    Honestly, I think the book store idea is a good one. I just wonder how anyone can create a niche within that right now. Perhaps your plan will accomplish that, but those are my thoughts.
    Derek Mansker recently posted..The Lego Jar (3/24/12) – Worms and spiders were harmed this week.My Profile

    • Red

       /  March 24, 2012

      I think that is where I am going to have the largest problem. I despise niches…unless they are window seats with bright sunshine and a cool breeze. Hmm.

  7. Always late to the party lately…
    1 – I love bookstores.
    2 – Word of mouth/exposure
    3 – The one in front of me
    4 – I’ve only bought 2 ebooks. Much prefer the tactile sensation of a real book.
    El Guapo recently posted..Trifextra – Finish The Story…My Profile

    • Red

       /  March 25, 2012

      You are in the majority for the feel of the book…and the smell is really important to a lot of readers. Two is very interesting to me, especially since I am willing to interview anyone who will sit down long enough.
      Late is fine…You are always welcome. 😉

  8. There is something special about a book, the smell, the feel and the pleasure of turning the pages! 🙂

    As for reading?

    Andre Norton’s space trader series.

    It was meant for kids, but had a whole new degree of magic…

    Thanks for the visit and comment Red – I’m one very sick puppy…

    Love and hugs!

    Prenin recently posted..Saturday – more fever dreamsMy Profile

  9. authormjlogan

     /  March 25, 2012

    I almost forgot to ask. Are you going to share the name of the bookstore? When will you open?


  10. Do you think the idea of opening a book store is stepping into the last century? Maybe. Bricks and mortar retail is all about location and shelf space.

    What do you think the biggest help for an indie author is? To be treated like an adult instead of being looked down on as if the author was a helpless child.

    If you were looking for a book just for fun, what would be the first one you would pick up? I’d probably go to the public library and check out the Sci-Fi/Fantasy section for new stuff.

    Would you shop a digital section of a traditional book store, either in the store or online? Not in NJ. The only traditional book store in my neck of the woods is B&N, hardly a mom and pop enterprise. I have an aversion to being ripped off for 7% sales tax.

    • Red

       /  March 25, 2012

      Knowing the libraries are on the chopping block for the county’s budget, the demand for a place for books will be on the rise. I am considering a reading room as well, which will have a libraryesque function to it. And I agree with the statement about indie authors, especially given the propensity of publishers to employ editors with a 6th grade reading level.


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