Adventures in writing – sick of scams

Oh Goddddddddddddddddddddd!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I sometimes truly believe I am a lone voice in the wilderness.

Okay, here we go.

I came across a ‘free’ course on how to promote books, as I am pants at promoting. I don’t have it in me. I may not be alone in this. I’m not a salesman. I write, I create, and I know there are a hundred and fifty thousand people out there right this minute screaming at me (hah! ONE HUNDRED AND FIFTY THOUSAND? What am I, nuts?) telling me that in this modern world, you have to be a salesperson, you have to get out there, promote yourself, give your all. Find your platform, your voice, and shout it out…Jeez, I’m even beginning to sound like all of these people!

Look, I can’t do it, ok. I’ve acted on stage. Biggest audience? Three thousand people, baying for blood. Live. I did it. Smallest audience? One old lady, seeking warmth from the cold, and I put in a performance that would have you eating your own heart! I can act, but I can’t be myself. I’m no good at that. Here’s an example…I had a colleague come up to me who had just requested me as a friend on FaceBook. ‘I never knew you were an author!’She’s been in school for FIVE YEARS. I’ve been writing since…well…since. I am NO GOOD at this sort of stuff…So, I downloaded this ‘course’.

It was pants.

I remember when I was selling magazines in John Menzies and this guy, who always came in and bought his newspaper from us, suddenly said to me, ‘What are you going to do when you retire?’ I looked, blinked, didn’t know what to say, couldn’t find the words, so I shrugged. He laughed and said, ‘When do you want to retire?’ Again, I sort of danced around the question…’Er, when I’m old and I can’t go to the toilet any longer without help.’

This was not the answer he was looking for. So, he invited me back to his home for a ‘seminar’. And there I sat, listening to the BS. How to earn fifty thousand in your first year, a hundred thousand in your second…and so on and so on.

This is the same.

And after this wonderful course that taught me absolutely sweet Fanny Adams…I get an e-mail inviting me to purchase the all new, all dancing super-dooper course on ‘How to be a best-selling author’ and if I did it NOW, I could save, save, save. Yey!!!

At the amazing bumper price of only $99 dollars a month (reduced from $127…wow, really? SUCH a saving!!!) I could learn how to be a best-selling author.

Oh Goddddddddddddddddddddddd!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I am reminded of those scams from Nigeria, where they drop you an e-mail to ask you to send them all your personal details (including the location of birthmarks on your children) and all you have to do is say yes, and they will deposit 10 million dollars into your account. Keep it there for a week, keep half of it, and sit back and count all those lovely greenbacks!

It’s all BALLS!!!! And the sooner we wake up to it the better. There is no easy way of creating a best-seller, people. Unless, of course, you can write a book telling everyone how to write!  Wouldn’t that be cool. I’ve looked up these ‘experts’ and they have written lots of books. All around 20 pages long and all to do with how to write a best seller. And the mad thing is, people are buying this BS!!!

Look, it’s not rocket science. The first part is the hardest, no matter what all these idiots say –  you have to be able to write and then YOU HAVE TO WRITE A DAMN GOOD BOOK. And after that, you write another, then another, and you don’t stop. That’s my credo. Don’t stop. To hell with them all. Just keep writing!

Oh…just to prove any form of marketing doesn’t work at all, my book ‘Whipped Up’ is on special offer and on virtual tour. You can read the reviews, but nobody is buying it, not now, not ever, so…nuff said.

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7 Comments

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7 responses to “Adventures in writing – sick of scams

  1. This is a tricky one, like you Stuart I loathe marketing it is completely alien to me. I think marketing probably does work but it has to be sustained and at a pretty intense level. Your credo sounds fine to me, because I find I spend too much time promoting and not actually writing.

    • Hi Robert! Yes it is tricky because we have to do it, but what I hate are all these salespeople and market experts who treat what we do as if it were like every other business. Fiction is not like that in my opinion and business people who are not creative simply don’t seem to understand this.

    • Hi Robert! Yes it is tricky because we have to do it, but what I hate are all these salespeople and market experts who treat what we do as if it were like every other business. Fiction is not like that in my opinion and business people who are not creative simply don’t seem to understand this.

  2. I must admit it isnt a priority with me to publish. I’ve a few poems and articles on websites, blogs etc. What is more important to me is to improve the craft of writing. Poetry for example needs a long apprenticeship.

    • Hi, and thanks for dropping by. I agree entirely with you, we must all improve our craft. Unfortunately, this sentiment does not seem to impact on most ‘writers’ around nowadays, who simply churn out any old nonsense as quickly as they can. Welcome to the world of self-publishing, which has freed up many, but has equally created a monster of which we have little control. I’ve been writing for many, many years, mainly for myself. The dream of being published was forever lurking in the back of my mind, but it was not something which spurred me on. What did, and what still does, is the pure joy of entering into a world of my own creation. I’ve learned so much since I got published back in 2009 that I sometimes think that everything that went before was of no consequence at all, but I’m not sure. Everything I set to paper is an act of learning. And this is the key, to write. Read and write. But write. If what you produce is only ever for yourself and a few friends, that is unimportant. I don’t write to be a success or earn thousands of pounds (both of which would be nice, of course), I write because I love it. I always will!

      • My sentiments entirely. I am a member of a writers’ group and we have published booklets and given readings. Yes, it is enjoyable but also challenging to write something a bit out of one’s comfort zone and to get to grips with the nuts & bolts of writing.

  3. Yes…but ultimately the sheer thrill of walking into the unknown is, well, irresistible.

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