The Journal, Thursday, 8/27

The Day
Rolled out a little after 2 this morning again.

The hits just keep on comin’. First, I don’t feel well. Had a short, unsuccessful walk punctuated by the fear that a high-velocity rainstorm was going to notice me and come my way.

Back to the house, and pretty much blah ever since.

Second, what I wrote in your Topic of the Night below.

I won’t be doing any writing today, other than this stuff and revisiting a magic realism story I (Gervasio) wrote a long time ago. It’s called “Carmen, Whose Face Was Cracked” and it’s a beautiful story in the ethereal sense.

I’ll post it as the story of the week for this week. So it will be up on Sunday at the site and posted by MailChimp on Monday morning.

Oh, if you’re in the mood to listen to advice from me, I recommend you check Dean’s blog ( over the next several days. He’s gearing up to put up, as a series of FREE freakin’ blog posts, a nonfiction book he’s writing on Heinlein’s Rules. I spent $75 on the video lectures, and it was literally the best $75 investment I’ve ever made. EVER. Go, get it free.


Don’t do it. Just don’t.

Tell you what. If you want to give someone all rights to your books in exchange for half the royalties, give them to me. Sign a contract giving me all electronic rights and I’ll be sure you get half the royalties.

Of course, I don’t have to do ANYthing except put your books out there on the market and wait for my 50% to roll in. And that’s just find and dandy with you, right?

Sounds nuts, doesn’t it? And at least you know me.

But that’s exactly what Amazon is asking you to do now.

You sign over the rights to your book for FIVE YEARS and they’ll give you a pissy, paltry “advance” of $1500 and then FIFTY percent of the royalties.

I’m not kidding.

Don’t do that. Don’t. It’s stupid. And you can’t feign ignorance, ’cause I just told you about it.

Okay, here’s what happened: A writer friend turned me on to Amazon’s new Scout program and asked what I thought.

In this Scout program thing, according to the writer, Amazon requires the author to “turn over all electronic rights for a period of five years. And then -”

What’s that? Sorry, I stopped listening.

Listen. To. Me.

Don’t. Be. Stupid.

ANY time ANY entity REQUIRES (or even asks or even suggests or even hints that) you, the author, turn over ALL RIGHTS (electronic or otherwise), the only “turn” you should do is turn on your heel and walk away.

Don’t even grace them with an answer.

Seriously, such a ludicrous offer doesn’t deserve a response.

And if you DO choose to respond, the word you’re looking for is NO.

Personally, I would use a two-word phrase. The second half of that phrase would be either a resounding NO or an equally loud “YOU.” The first half of it would consist of the acronym for unlawful carnal knowledge, which is what anyone who asks you to turn over all rights to a piece of work is trying to force upon you.


Exclusivity is BAD. Exclusivity in which the book store (and that’s all Amazon is, a book store) OWNS YOUR RIGHTS is roughly a thousand times worse.

Don’t email telling me Amazon is a publisher. They aren’t. And they aren’t a distributor. They’re a book store. Nothing more.

And their stupid Scout program? Listen. If it wasn’t good for THEM, they wouldn’t be doing it. Duh.

All of my books and short stories are available on Amazon (a book store).

They’re also available worldwide through Smashwords, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, Apple, Inktera, Oyster, Scribd, Tolino,Baker & Taylor Blio, txtr, Library Direct, Baker-Taylor Axis360, OverDrive and Flipkart until a couple days ago. And they’re also available through subsidiaries of many of those companies. And I’m always looking for new sales venues to add.


There. Forewarned is forearmed. Now go do whatever you want. Just PLEASE don’t tell me about it.

Today’s Writing
No fiction writing today.
Fiction Words: XXXX

Writing of Book 9 of the Wes Crowley saga
Day 1…… 3213 words. Total words to date….. 3213 words
Day 2…… 1046 words. Total words to date….. 4259 words
Day 3…… 1858 words. Total words to date….. 6117 words
Day 4…… 1023 words. Total words to date….. 7140 words
Day 5…… 1587 words. Total words to date….. 8327 words
Day 6…… X943 words. Total words to date….. 9270 words
Day 7…… XXXX words. Total words to date….. XXXX words

Total fiction words for the month…………… 20501
Total fiction words for the year……………… 462901

1 thought on “The Journal, Thursday, 8/27”

  1. I had just read the offer and asked Deb about it and she gave the same answer only with a bit more gentility. I had already decided to ignore scout but now for sure for sure. Thanks. Hope you feel better. Am off to read DWS.

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