Fifty Shades of Twifuck Fanfic Bullshit!

Now you understand why I only visit Barnes & Noble’s for the restroom.

Now even Wikipedia reported that Mrs. Erica Leonard uploaded Fifty Shades of Grey as Master of the Universe (I really fucking hate this bitch because she has destroyed the good names of He-Man and She-Ra!) Twifuck fanfic under the pseudonym of “Snowqueen’s Icedragon.” I found the .pdf and have skimmed over it, and let me tell you it is a 604-page assload of shit! At least the British wildebeest admitted she spewed it under the duress of a midlife crisis. As a fan of Anais Nin, Alina Reyes, and Anne Rice (before her Catlick reconversion) I can say this is unequivocally poorly written and poorly researched in the BDSM department. Perhaps she should’ve opened up communications with Sapio Slut and asked her a few questions concerning her relationship with her dom lover. OR she could’ve watched Cool Devices. Not that this had a chance in the seven circles of hell with proper research and editing.

How low can the publishing industry stoop? I did some research and looking at a Blogger link for the MOTU fic-shit, in 2010 all these screaming Twifuck teen and cougar idiots gave the fic 40,000 gay disco ball sparkling reviews. I guess Mrs. Leonard took her experience as a British TV exec decided to do what the entertainment industry does best: rehash, repackage, and re-release. In 3-D. Incidentally Erica is Chilean/Scottish, married to somebody who’s as mental as she is, attended the University of Kent and majored in HISTORY before getting her first real job as a studio manager’s assistant at the National Film and Television School in London. Oh yeah, I’m sure she’s done a fuckload of writing…

Incidentally, her publisher is The Writer’s Coffee Shop (which is formatted a bit like Ellora’s Cave), be sure to read the submission guidelines, and remember, anybody can be a writer. It doesn’t matter if you’re not any good… And if you need an agent ring up Valerie Hoskins since she did such a good job with Erica!

Valerie Hoskins Associates
20 Charlotte Street
London
W1T 2NA

email: info@vhassociates.co.uk

phone: 020 7637 4490

REGISTERED ADDRESS
Valerie Hoskins Associates Limited
8 The Glasshouse
49A Goldhawk Road
London
W12 8QP

REGISTERED NUMBER 2435715

P.S. They might be optioning this for a screenplay. Your best bet into what this pile of fuck might look like, DL The Secretary.

P.P.S. If you have any questions regarding the .pdf email me.

“Music is disposable now. It doesn’t have the emotional impact anymore. That’s sad.” – Bob Welch (1945-2012), Fleetwood Mac guitarist.

Erin Go Bragh Yourself!

Yes people it’s that time again- HAPPY ST. PATRICK’S DAY! And since I’m a third Irish and a New Yorker St. Paddy’s has a very special meaning, beating the shit outta Proddies and getting pissed at the steps of St. Pat’s Cathedral.

Can you feel the love in the air? Yeah, well, I can’t wait for my parish’s big parade this Sunday. The AOH gets especially hilarious at the cop n’ firefighter dive. I might take a stroll out into the city after the parade (it’s hell right next to Columbus Day on the streets), grab a Guinness (that they don’t TRY to dye green), flirt with some drunks, and pick up some Smirnoff Ice (hopefully Key Food will have some of the flavored ones left because that hard lemonade/iced tea is shite).

And one more thing before I sign off, check out my links because I added my fic blog. There might be an original work or two in the future, but I doubt it.

Have a good one!

Repetition IS NOT good for the soul pt. III and the author’s earnings

First off I’d like to make a quick clarification, Smeyer isn’t the only writing diva-bitch on the planet. Fanfiction.net’s author list on who’ll take legal action against FF.net and its members should they use their work in fanfiction says it all. Fair Use (with mandatory written disclaimers) are on the fic writer’s side, but according to them, it’s clearly copyright infringement. The truth, writers are afraid. Their books can’t stay on the NYT bestseller’s list forever. Their printing contracts will expire, thus ending their royalties. And these people like to live like royalty. The last thing they need is some young upstart taking their spot- they’d be fucked over, forgotten about. Even if their TV movie of the week adaptation is enjoying a syndication run on Spike TV, TNT, or Lifetime. What about their theatrically released adaptations recently got a Blu Ray treatment or a second (and possible third) SE DVD. Not to mention the manga publishers beating their doors down. How dare they steal my thunder?! Now I’ll have to deal with those geeky, unwashed jerks at comic-cons! Or do the university speaking circuit after I get my honorary doctorate! GRRRR!!!!! As soon as I get the crap with Relapse done, I’ll do my best to make an author’s earnings clearer for you.

Eclipse

1)Perfect – 40x/ 2)beautiful – 31x/ 3)murmured – 90x/ 4)hissed – 14x/ 5)hiss – 5x/ 6)stunned – 6x/ 7)stunning – 1x/ 8 )gorgeous – 1x/ 9)murmur – 4x/ 10)whisper – 16x/ 11)whispered – 137x/ 12)amazing – 6x/ 13)golden – 11x/

14)chuckled – 36x/ 15)chuckle – 3x/ 16)gold- 11x/ 17)chagrin – 3x/ 18)chagrined – 1x/ 19)smirked – 1x/ 20)smirk – 2x/ 21)snarling – 2x/ 22)snarled – 5x/ 23)snarl – 3x/ 24)whispers – 1x/ 25)amazingly – 2x/ 26)gracefully – 2x/

27)laugh – 22x/ 28)grace – 5x/ 29)graceful – 3x/ 30)laughed – 139x/ 31)perfection – 3x/ 32)perfectly – 13x/ 33)props – 2x/ 34)flawlessly – 3x

Yeah, it’s that bad. The Cullens really are the ideal Mormon family.

A couple of things pertaining to LBC: in ’06 Time Warner Book Group dumped LBC on Hachette media forming the company Hachette Book Group USA that lists LBC as one of their publishing companies. At this time Relapse was written and “leaked”. Even if TWBG still owned LBC, they still would’ve bowed to Smeyer’s demands. But this new company saw the potential profits- regardless of reception- and hungrily renegotiated. This also included the publication of The Host in ’08 at the “completion” of the Twifuck “saga” listing it as adult scifi. The Waste was in fact more LDS garbage about Melanie Mary Sue Stryder getting a spirit baby (Wanderer) from God’s planet Kolob to be grafted onto her brain stem to take a body of flesh to advance to godhood status and enter into celestial plural marriage with Jared-Jacob and live with him and a bunch of still plain ole humans in the caves of 1,000 year purgatory playing kickball and abstaining. Hey, you think that Xenu might’ve invested in some real estate on Kolob?

And now for what you’ve all been waiting for: the real life of an author!

Now mind you I did rip this off from a link on the Ellora’s Cave blog Redlines and Deadlines. EC’s owner Tina Engler (a.k.a. Jaid Black) is online romantica publishing’s Smeyer. She thinks she can trick us with R&D into believing that any quality control and editing exists at EC. Don’t believe me? Go to 4shared do a search on EC and you’ll find  GIGABYTES of digital EC books. 90% are shit. Plot, execution, editing, polish- that’s thrown out the window! My personal favorite is Lorie O’Clare’s vignette The Cop. It belonged on Adultfanfiction because it looked like a horny 16-year-old girl was scribbling about Don Flack (and I really enjoyed her Lunewulf series overall- the glaring exception was Man of Her Dreams).

Despite everything you’ve heard about advances, writers essentially make their money from royalties.  They do get advances, but those advances are against royalties. That means they don’t earn any royalties on the book until the publisher has recouped its advance. If the advance is really large or sales are really bad, they may earn only a few royalties or not even earn out their advance at all. But if they have wily agents and fabulous sales, they may get an advance bigger than any prospective royalties they will ever get on the book (Tom Clancy, for example). After all, it’s better for the publisher to keep an author like Tom Clancy generating millions of dollars even if he doesn’t earn back $60,000 of the multi-million-dollar advance it originally paid him.

And what is a royalty? A percentage of the retail price of every book sold.

Note the importance of each word in this statement. First of all, it’s a percentage. For most paperback authors, that percentage is 4 to 8 percent (4 is what is offered at the very bottom rung). So for a $7 book, the author gets 28 to 56 cents.

Secondly, it’s the retail price, the one stamped on the book. The wholesale price is what a bookseller or distributor pays, often about 50 to 60% of the retail price.

And finally, authors do not receive a percentage for every book printed, just for every book sold.  Since booksellers can return for credit any books they don’t sell, the number of books sold generally amounts to about half of the books printed (less if sales were bad; more if sales were good).

So an author’s earnings are figured from this formula:

Royalty percentage x number of books sold x price of book

At present, this covers the majority of romance authors being published in single title. There are authors who make more (those fifty or so I mentioned, plus maybe two hundred lead title authors,), but it’s a minority. The book prices are currently typical for this level, and the royalty rates represent the range still existing in the romance publishing world. This chart is meant to explain how people can make vastly different amounts of money for books of the same genre or sales. It should give you an impression of possible royalty earnings, not demonstrate exactly what an author can make for her books. Read it with caution. I hope it will enlighten.

To these earnings you can add other sales: foreign rights sales (advances range as widely for these as for the U.S. rights—they can be in the hundreds or they can be in the thousands), audio sales, in-house book club sales (generally accounted at 2.5% royalty for Harlequin/Silhouette), and out-of-house book club sales (Book-of-the-Month club, Doubleday, Rhapsody, etc., which offer advances plus royalties). This will probably add a couple of thousand to your earnings, unless you’re doing well, in which case it could add as much as several thousands to it. Of course, some people don’t get other earnings at all.

Royalty earnings + other sales = gross earnings. But gross earnings for a full-time author aren’t the same as for someone who works for a company. If you work for a company, it buys your supplies and it pays 7.5% of your social security tax. Anything related to the business is paid for (not work clothes and lunches, but paper, computer, etc.). An author who writes full-time has to pay all of her social security tax (15% total as opposed to a regularly employed person’s 7.5%), along with an agent’s commission, which ranges from 10% to 15% of the gross (most authors do need agents these days). She foots the bill for promotion (the author often pays out of her own pocket for those bookmarks and flyers and copies of galleys that you see), computers, supplies, research, etc. And she is responsible for her own health insurance, retirement fund, etc.

One more thing to consider is that an author has to cover her expenses while waiting for her royalties. And those take a long time to come, many times as long as two or three years after she sold the book. All the money doesn’t come in until a few years after the book has been published. I once had a friend tell me, “Yes, but the royalties come in forever, so the more books you have, the more little checks you’re getting.” That’s true—if your book is kept in print. Most midlist books are not. In fact, all of my Deborah Martina and Deborah Nicholas books are now out of print. So unless an author gets her rights back and resells the books (and reselling is only possible if she has established a fairly big name), the royalties do end eventually. That means that each book earns a finite amount.

Let me give you a concrete example of the earnings of a single title book. Rosalind Romancer has one of the top publishers and actually makes a living at her writing. She’s had four historical romances out. Her sales are fairly good. She has a good agent and has a track record, so her royalty rate is 8%. Her publisher prints 75,000 copies of To Live a Romance, 40,000 of which sell. Since she’s not at the bottom, but still midlist, TLAR is priced at $5.99. She makes $19,168 in royalties on it (remember, this includes her advance).

She sells TLAR to Russia for $1000 (her portion—the publisher has already gotten their percentage of the sale, too) and to France for $2000 (her portion). She makes an audio sale with a new audio company for $750. That brings her earnings up to $22,918. Sounds pretty good, huh? Wait, I’m not done.

Now she must subtract 15% for her agent’s commission ($3437.70) and 7.5% for self-employment tax ($1718.85 more). That’s a total of $5156.55 taken off that $22,918, which leaves her $17,761.45.

If you figure expenses for supplies, promo, etc., of anywhere from $1500 to $5000, then this author has made $12,000 to $15,000 BEFORE subtracting the taxes YOU pay generally, and that’s with no benefits. Is it any wonder that authors have to write two books a year to make a living? And remember that this is someone doing decently. There are plenty of authors out there making $5000 a year or less after all is said and done.

Thankfully, writers love what they do. It’s what makes up for the low pay and the long hours (I spend most of my day at the computer, believe it or not, and am writing this on a Sunday). The thrill of watching a character emerge or having a problem plot suddenly fall into place or capturing a feeling in words can be more rewarding than any paycheck. If it’s not that way for you, I’d think long and hard about becoming a writer.

I hope this helped a bit (to bring wannabes down to earth). So I suggest that you finish uni, get your degrees, a day job, and write at night, on your lunch, and have fun! Sometimes it just won’t happen, but you might turn out a better person for it.

For shmeiliarockie…

In case you don’t know who shmeilirockie is go here: http://www.youtube.com/user/shmeiliarockie.

Shmeiliarockie did this brilliant in-depth analysis serial on Twilight entitled, You Are Bella. I’m not quite sure if she’s finished, but her latest post was two days ago, and she looks much better from her last post after the New Moan premiere. Believe me, it’s okay to hit a wall. It’s okay to get frustrated. As someone who has suffered from depression since childhood, I completely empathize with you. Writers are complicated people (I’m one too- in theory at least), but take comfort Stefenie Meyer isn’t complicated. Know why? She isn’t a real writer. She’s a fanfic writer who got extraordinarily lucky, at the right time. Jealous of her financial success? Perfectly normal, especially during these hard times when college grads and students (even drop-outs like me) are wading through a hazy fog, that, according to the Fox Noise Channel, doesn’t really exist.

First off, you hit the stake directly on head stating Twatlight’s success resulted from a financial decision. Every anti and intelligent person knows this. Look at the trends in entertainment today: reality TV is a booming phenomenon. Musicians are prefabricated corporate packages- the Disney teen pop “artists” have an international following, regardless of language or region, the “artists” are carbon copies of one another. Greed is good (subprime mortgage crisis). Instant gratification is necessary (global credit crunch). Updating outdated (and just plain wrong) material is the norm: cover songs, prequels, sequels, and TV/book/game adaptations (this includes AvatarPocahontas with blue people and and smatter of clever CGI). This kills two birds with one stone: 1) hiring writers and directors who will demand all sorts of crazy things (union rights, correct pay, insurance, etc.) and 2) it saves studios money! They already own the rights to the shit and royalties are negotiable. If not, they get dropped (in the case of DVDs: 6 eps. of Scooby Doo, the entire series of Happy Days, the pop/rock soundtrack of Knight Rider, 21 Jump Street, the complete omission of the In Living Color musical parodies, and Quantum Leap just to name a few). Even though logic dictates that fans will be furious and a backlash is probable. Actually, the backlash happened.

But the studios are willing to endure the backlash, despite the fact that DVD sales are becoming their bread and butter. Flexing their muscles is more important than listening to the demands of striking writers.

You also address in YAB that as a fanfic writer and reader the most popular fics are Mary Sues, they get the most reviews and most hits. Mosey over to Fanfiction.net and- for example- click on “Movies”, then scroll down to Miracle. This post-Olys/pre-NHL lock-out ’04 Disney hit based on the Miracle on Ice USA hockey team gold medal victory over the USSR has a nice collection of fics (65 I think- but if you do an independent search there’s roughly 60 more under “Misc. Movies”). So why would a live-action Disney flick have a following like this? Well, it was well written and directed, it starred an A-list actor, and the hockey team was cast with very hot guys who were real hockey players (with the exception of Eddie Cahill). There are fics being written about them today, because the young actors got very little screen time (fuck you Gavin O’Connor). The most popular fics contain Mary Sue heroines that are either one of four things: 1) daughter/stepdaughter/niece/granddaughter of Herb Brooks, Craig Patrick, or Doc Nagobads. 2) A U of M or BU co-ed who gets a job working for the team. 3) A relation (or someone with a relationship) with a Midwest hockey player falls for an East coast hockey player (or vice-versa) playing to the team’s legendary regional rivalry . Or 4) a Russian girl who has a relationship to the Russian hockey team but falls for one of the American players.

What are wrong with these characters? Nothing, intrinsically at least. The fics are very creative, but are poorly researched, poorly edited, and the characters have unbelievable and often tragic backgrounds to provide magnetism and chemistry between them and the hockey player of their choice. But it parlays right to the fangirls. A particularly horrific example is Broken Shards Of Time And Space.

But this is all academic accounting, of course bullfuck like this will be a blockbuster. But here are a few tidbits you might not know about Meyer:

1) Thirty-five agents rejected her before the viper known as Jodi Reamer gave her “manuscript” the gold stamp of merchandising approval.

2) Meyer’s publisher Little, Brown & Co. is owned by Hachette, a French media group (multinational now). They bought LBC in ’06 after they bought out Time Warner Book Group (its original owner), making it the second largest publisher in the world. Why did this happen? Well at the time Time Warner was making a fuckload of bad business decisions. After 9/11 and the Dot.com bust, Time Warner reported a $99 billion dollar loss in ’02. There was also a four year recession (hitting NY pretty hard where Time Warner HQ happens to be located) from 2000-’03. So if my timeline is correct Meyer had to have completed the MS for Twatlight around ’03 (which took 2 months according to her), then found Reamer who shopped it around to different houses eventually landing in LBC which is probably ’04. Now Time Warner has suffered tremendous losses, and its sending out memos to its subsidiaries to buy anything that looks remotely lucrative. LBC isn’t stupid, they know (in the middle of the Harry Potter craze) that trends are shifting, life is getting harder. Escapism is more important than ever. We had a tyrannical president. The war is never ending. People are losing their jobs. Others are getting crazy rich really fast. And the sales of actual copies of books is chicken feed compared to merchandising. They know Twatlight is crap, but it’s the glitzy, pretty people that make emo fangirls (and lonely cougars) swallow it whole. It’s sort of like cutting into a cake with fluffy, sugar-crystallized pink frosting, but instead of lifting out a slice of the richest, thickest devil’s food cake you’d ever seen… it’s nothing more than a cardboard box. A prop, just like Meyer mentions so many goddamn times! Twatlight hits shelves fall of ’05.

So let’s recap: 1) Meyer is a fraud. 2) Creativity is in the toilet. 3) Vapidness is an infectious disease. Case in point: Sharon Lathan. Lathan is a cancer to Pride and Prejudice. There’s little difference between Lathan and Meyer- save one thing: Lathan’s first book was a fanfic. Lathan is a 50-something RN who went to see the ’05 film adaptation of P&P starring Keira Knightley and Matthew MacFayden. She admitted that she never read an Austen novel. She admitted that she knew nothing about the Regency era. And finally she admitted she didn’t know what P&P was about. What she did know was that Knightley and MacFayden were extremely sexy actors. Well I’ll give her that, one of the requirements to be an actor is to be sexy.

So she went home and pounded out a 54-chapter drivel fest of PG-13 porno entitled, Mr. & Mrs. Fitzwilliam Darcy: Two Shall Become One. I assume she put it up on FF.net and it had such a following she decided to hawk it on her own via POD (that’s publishing on demand- a scam). I found an original .pdf copy of the drivel on 4shared.com. If you’re masochistic or curious go there and you’ll find it- DON’T spend the money! Sourcebooks, Inc. (a so-called “independent” publisher) swotted her up and her shitpile went to print on ’09. It was so successful, it spawned two sequels: Loving Mr. Darcy: Journeys Beyond Pemberley and My Dearest Mr. Darcy: An Amazing Journey Into Love Everlasting. I didn’t read the other two books (I’m not crazy) BUT honest reviewers confirmed that the timeline was about one year, their fist child was born at the end of the last book, and there was NO character development for the mains.

Sound familiar? No, you’re not seeing things. It’s reality.

Here’s another thing you need to see: AVOID PUBLISHING/PRINT ON DEMAND!! POD is nothing more than taking your unedited, unpolished, unspellchecked manuscript to Kinko’s and printing out several thousand pages for a bunch of copies that could be bound by any print shop. These subsidiaries who may or may not work for legit publishing houses ensure that the author is nothing more than a glorified secretary, in a pool of thousands. The author, in essence, works for the POD company, getting paid staggeringly little for their “creations”. Whatever they sell, they make. It’s like being a telemarketer; you are your own agent, editor, and publicist. As soon as you give your credit card number to pay for printing (a set number of copies of books that will realistically never get beyond friends and family), you have bought a golden ticket to complete creative autonomy on your literary journey!

And pigs will fly.

Unless you are a phenom of a salesperson, POD is a scam. Roughly 20 out of the thousands of POD books that flood the internet get picked up for legit publishing. Zane and Christopher Paolini are often touted as POD champions, the truth of the matter is they got lucky. Zane’s erotica which is targeted to black women met her forum at the right time when black literature was being brought into the mainstream thanks to hip hop being popular with white people. Paolini’s parents were footing the bill for the Eragon printing when the Harry Potter hurricane hit the country. And the rest is history.

And finally to close my rant: how to get published.

I was on my way back from Queens when I met author Christina Britton Conroy (One Man’s Music). I pulled out my copy of Mark Bowden’s Guests of the Ayatollah (this is also being optioned for the big screen like BHD and Killing Pablo) when this petite blonde woman turned around and offered me a bookmark advertising her book. She was sweet and engaging, but what really made me strike up a conversation was that she commented that I was the first person she saw reading a real book all day. So I sucked it up and had to ask her:

“How’d you do it?”

And she said:

“Twenty years, 2 agents, and enough rejection letters to wallpaper my apartment.”

But what truly made me respect her was that she was an editor for a publishing house where the Twatlight MS landed in her office. She called it “charming crap”.

So shmeiliarockie, don’t burn your ass out on the corporate crap NaNoWriMo. It’ll get you nowhere. I tried something similar at Lulu.com, and got told my MS for my helium-filled romance/sex-comedy, Forbidden Fruit was sure-fire publishing material I was ecstatic! Then I put it up on fictionpress.org (FF.net’s original fiction wing) and my beta told me it was a sucky, but good first try at an MS. It was actually my second. My first dark erotic anime-inspired drama, The Glass Coffin, was brushed off by a professional editor who I got in contact with through a professor I befriended. I still have her rejection letter: “You got talent… blah-blah… reminds me of X-Men… blah-blah… sorry kid, you’re just not marketable…”

So now it’s Canada or bust! The lit agents are fewer, the competition’s tougher, but I’m not stressing for a change. Why you ask? Well when it comes to manga-inspired-over-the-top-romantic-dramedy set in a fictional university surrounding its loser, egotistical jerkoff hockey team, I’m actually having fun. Now all I need is to talk to some college hockey players to get the NCAA technobabble straight and I’ll really be set!

Keep your stick on the ice… then bash some Twifucks with it!

P.S. I’ll still be going back to school so I can get a day job. But I have  no intention of paying back the loan if I can’t get a proper one.