Posted by: forgettingsally | October 4, 2010 The Allegory of Change is a harbinger of change that transcends possibly many of the tools of the current online publishing world by providing writers a medium for discussing, interacting and seeking feedback from peers in the most professional and civil manner. That then would make a revolutionary of hope for many of us writers seeking an honest channel that facilitates effective communication, and a chance to be noticed by publishers.

Here’s my response on the proposed changes (October 1st) they have planned for the software:

Giving Credence to the Books That Lag Behind on the Shelf:

That’s a wonderful step indeed. Most writers sometimes refrain from showing up the “other book” possibly because the attention on the newer book would be ignored. After all, the typical expected behavior of the software was to relegate the second book to a shelf that sits beneath the old book where no one can see. However, there is also another issue in promoting two or three books on the same shelf. Most often, a writer’s personal preference would be to promote one book at a time even though he/she chooses to highlight a portfolio of books on the same account. By concentrating on pushing one book to the editor’s desk, the writer works on the basis that the other book may be noticed as well assuming the writer turns out to be a prolific writer who has much to share. In short, while some writers may like the equal treatment rendered to all their books, there are others who may look at it as an impediment towards pushing that one book to the Editor’s Desk. The alternative would be of course to hide those books instead.

Get Lost Spammers:

This is where it possibly gets sticky. The idea of Harper Collins running a site that provides autonomy is obvious with the rather original name they have assigned their incredible site. I think spammers are simply nauseating people who lack the finesse and refinement of being polite but then, society always has its bits and pieces of people who simply have trouble fitting into the crowd. The idea of restricting people to their own preferred crowd possibly defeats the purpose of the system which is to allow people the free exchange of information and opinion. After all, this is a writer’s network not a social network. I would suggest restricting the free rein of spammers by instituting a system that takes of the numbers on their rank. After all, ranking is such an importance concept here in moving towards the top and would be a great way of impeding spammers who never seem to learn. For instance, bug me and I penalize you by sending off a signal to HC that tells me how “bugged” I am because of your constant emails. This signal could be initiated easily perhaps by the writer activating a link on the spammer which sets off a questionnaire that allows the respondent to reply to a set of questions which is then internalized into a grading system that either rewards or chastises the spammer. Phew! Just an idea….

Nice to Know Who Your Backers Are:

I am not quite sure as yet as to how I really view this proposed new feature although it will be nice to know the writers who back my book, Forgetting Sally”. Now that I am busy penning my other book and have little time to spare, I can safely see that there are 16 authors who really love my book enough to keep it permanently placed on their bookshelf. And those are true writers who actually feel convinced the book meets their standards and have touched their hearts. The only thing I can suggest is that HC monitors if a book is on a writer’s shelf because someone really liked it enough to keep it permanently placed there or that this bookshelf/account was concocted simply to increase the bookshelf count on a particular book. If a shelf was devised simply to boost up the ranking of one book through dishonest means, I would suggest that the account be pulled down if inactive over a specific time period and the points be deducted accordingly.

For those who remain unconvinced that has yet to prove itself, the only thing I can say is that you can either adopt a wait and see attitude until you think the coast is clear, choose to dabble with the other not so promising networks in the internet realm or simply work by providing informed ideas to HC on how can make the constructive changes for writers who yearn to be published. In all, change has the most profound effect in adding benefit and fluidity to a system and that I see is what is all about.

Written by Romilla D.

© 2010 All Rights Reserved



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