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Distinguished Bibliophile
patgolfneb
Posts: 1,758
Registered: ‎09-10-2011
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Re: It's ALL doomed! James Patterson is afraid so, anyway.

[ Edited ]

MacMcK1957 wrote:

"It was a dark and stormy night.  Suddenly, a shot rang out!  A door slammed.  The maid screamed.  Suddenly, a pirate ship appeared on the horizon!  While millions of people were starving, the king lived in luxury.  Meanwhile, on a small farm in Kansas, a boy was growing up."


Thinking about your entry in this years contest?:smileytongue:

 

 

http://www.bulwer-lytton.com/
AlanNJ
Posts: 3,722
Topics: 64
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Registered: ‎03-09-2010
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Re: It's ALL doomed! James Patterson is afraid so, anyway.


Doug_Pardee wrote:

keriflur wrote:

 

What's a music store? :smileysurprised:


It's a store that sells musical instruments and sheet music. Lots of times they hold classes, too.

 

I'm showing my age, I guess. That's what a "music store" was back in my day. There were also "record stores" where you could buy recorded music.

 


My first job out of college way back when was working at Sam Goody's.  They sold albums (what are they), sheet music, musical instruments and audio equipment.  I loved it!

►Without order there is chaos◄
Wordsmith
TnTexas
Posts: 884
Registered: ‎10-22-2011

Re: It's ALL doomed! James Patterson is afraid so, anyway.

keriflur: Who says these books are well-written?  Have you read them?  I haven't, so I can't say if they're good or crap.

 

Topping a weighted list of e-only books from a selected set of retailers doesn't mean anything in the scope of sales.  As I said in the thread on that topic, all these lists are heavily skewed, from the NYT on down.

 

Exactly what I was thinking. A traditionally published book doesn't guarantee a well-written book - especially the longer a series continues, at least that's been my experience. A self-published book has even less guarantee. That's not to say that there aren't some that are well-written and edited; but there are a ton that aren't. And if the price is right (aka less than a $1), many don't really care.

Distinguished Bibliophile
keriflur
Posts: 6,640
Registered: ‎01-05-2010
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Re: It's ALL doomed! James Patterson is afraid so, anyway.


patgolfneb wrote:

MacMcK1957 wrote:

"It was a dark and stormy night.  Suddenly, a shot rang out!  A door slammed.  The maid screamed.  Suddenly, a pirate ship appeared on the horizon!  While millions of people were starving, the king lived in luxury.  Meanwhile, on a small farm in Kansas, a boy was growing up."


Thinking about your entry in this years contest?:smileytongue:

 

 

http://www.bulwer-lytton.com/

I love how they tell you how to "inflict" your entry on them.

DeanGibson
Posts: 2,186
Topics: 92
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Registered: ‎04-12-2011
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Re: It's ALL doomed! James Patterson is afraid so, anyway.


Doug_Pardee wrote:

keriflur wrote:

 

What's a music store? :smileysurprised:


It's a store that sells musical instruments and sheet music. Lots of times they hold classes, too.

 

I'm showing my age, I guess. That's what a "music store" was back in my day. There were also "record stores" where you could buy recorded music.

 


Try finding a new stereo receiver that has a phono (low-level) input;  it's getting more and more difficult.  People are opting instead for these 5.1 or 7.1 systems, all with small speakers; somehow that is supposed to give better sound quality than my two Acoustic Research behemoths with an adjustable (octave-by-octave) equalizer.

 

Even more difficult is finding a new phonograph.  If you want quality, eBay (used) is your best bet.

 

In a surprising twist, while finding a new VHS player is difficult, used ones are all over Craigslist for $5.00.

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Bibliophile
5ivedom
Posts: 3,544
Registered: ‎12-03-2011
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Re: It's ALL doomed! James Patterson is afraid so, anyway.

Get used to it Keriflur.

 

There's going to be more and more badly written stuff that wins out over well written stuff because with ebooks the rules are very different and the intersection of

 

Authors who know how to win/market in this new world.

 

AND

 

Authors who know how to write very well.

 

Is super super small.

 

*******

If you look at apps, the big winners are already the companies that have mastered marketing.

 

Same thing is going to happen with Books.

 

People are, for lack of a better word, sheep-like in their trust of the bestseller lists and what the store tells them is 'good'.

 

So it's all about being in the Top100 or being selected by the store.

 

Quality of writing doesn't matter very much now.

Distinguished Bibliophile
bobstro
Posts: 3,782
Registered: ‎01-01-2012
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Re: It's ALL doomed! James Patterson is afraid so, anyway.

[ Edited ]

5ivedom wrote:

[...] There's going to be more and more badly written stuff that wins out over well written stuff because with ebooks the rules are very different

 

That much is true...

 

and the intersection of

 

Authors who know how to win/market in this new world.

 

AND

 

Authors who know how to write very well.

 

Is super super small.

 

That has always been the case. Not having a publisher won't suddenly make any individual author fit better into group 1 (those who know how to win/market), whether or not they're in group 2 (write well). The difference is that authors in group 2 who have knowledgeable help (publishers, editors, etc.) don't have to belong to group 1. Meanwhile, just being in group 1 can bring a certain measure of success, but doesn't automatically put you in the best selling author camp for the long haul.

 

If you want to make the point that some people with skills in both camps can succeed on their own with self-publishing, I won't argue. That doesn't mean good writers disappear. They may become more difficult to find, but that's half the fun of being a reader.

 

If you look at apps, the big winners are already the companies that have mastered marketing.

 

You're arguing against your own point. How many of those apps are poorly written? The ones that succeed have both quality apps (they at least run reliably enough for users to come back) as well as savvy marketing.

 

If your logic held up, the apps at the top of the lists would be doing well not matter how buggy they are, or how often they crashed.

 

[...] People are, for lack of a better word, sheep-like in their trust of the bestseller lists and what the store tells them is 'good'.

 

Some people are, sure. The market overall is growing. That doesn't mean quality disappears or is not valued.

 

So it's all about being in the Top100 or being selected by the store.

 

Quality of writing doesn't matter very much now.

 

 

Sure it does. Why do you think book reviews exist? (And I don't mean B&N's silly reviews. Try NYT Review of Books.) Why do people care what Oprah thinks? Why are book summaries popular? People don't like to have their time wasted. Sure, some people will waste time, and are happy to be titillated. That's a big market. That's not the only market, and a small slice of the overall market looking for quality is still a big number. And historically, one that will pay for it.

 

How is your brave new world fundamentally different than small press publishing or cheap paperbacks coming onto the scene in past decades?

 

I'd argue that along with the ease of getting published comes ease of reviewing. A new market of sorting through the tripe will thrive as people realize (or just remember) that top selling doesn't mean top quality. Woe to the self-publisher who takes shortcuts or is lazy once they develop a bad reputation. People aren't going to put up with after-purchase patches to fix things. New sources of quality reviews will no doubt emerge. What people trust to do the sorting for them may change. Not everybody is going to shift over to reading poorly written steamy vampire romance novels just because it spiked at number one on sales.

 

What you're describing is an emerging de-linking of quality from sales chart position. That is something different. It's what's selling, not what's necessarily good.

Distinguished Bibliophile
keriflur
Posts: 6,640
Registered: ‎01-05-2010
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Re: It's ALL doomed! James Patterson is afraid so, anyway.

5ivedom -

 

First you said that inferior books would not take down trad pub.  Here's the quote:

 

"No, inferior books are not going to take down trad pub.

 

Well written books at very low prices are. They already are beginning to. See the thread about #1 and #2 in ebook sales being gobbled up by Self-Published books."

 

I pointed out that the books in question were not well-written, so you changed you argument to:

 

"There's going to be more and more badly written stuff that wins out over well written stuff" and "Quality of writing doesn't matter very much now."

 

So, which is it?  What's your real argument here?

Distinguished Bibliophile
keriflur
Posts: 6,640
Registered: ‎01-05-2010
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Re: It's ALL doomed! James Patterson is afraid so, anyway.

Bibliophile
5ivedom
Posts: 3,544
Registered: ‎12-03-2011

Re: It's ALL doomed! James Patterson is afraid so, anyway.

BOTH.

 

1) Well written cheaper books will beat well written more expensive books.

 

2) Badly written cheap books with good marketing and/or good product market fit will beat well written more expensive books.

 

*******

 

We can either have a CONVERSATION or we can argue. PLEASE - think about what I'm saying. I'm not saying your view of the world isn't perfect. I'm actually saying - it's too perfect. It's not an ideal perfect world we live in where the BEST writing wins.

 

*******

 

The main roadblock is you are applying YOUR PERSONAL CRITERIA for what is well-written.

 

the only criteria that matters is what readers WANT and GIVE VALUE TO.

 

Your mindset is still in the world where

 

A) Publishers decided what was 'good enough to be read'.

 

B) Publishers showed readers this limited subset of books and readers chose what READERS wanted to read from this small subset.

 

Now the subset is replaced by a HUGE DIVERSE set of books. And readers are now choosing stuff that they WANT to read, often irrespective of the quality of writing.

 

*******

Try to think about it from that perspective. That there's no such filtering criteria any more as 'quality of writing'.

 

You're living in a world where that's the #1 criteria. It's more like #7.

 

I know, it's absolutely horrible. However, that's what it is.

 

*******

 

IT's the same old

 

Product Market Fit

Vs

Quality

 

thing.

 

*******

 

You can write badly about something people really want to read about (Billionaire Bosses and other such stuff) and you'll still do well.

 

You can write like Robert Frost about something people don't want to read and you won't do well.

 

*******

 

I think you're shifting to this idealistic mindset where the absolute best written books (in terms of quality of writing) will always win or should always win.

 

That's simply not true.

 

Quality of Writing is not the #1 criteria for people. It never was. It became such a big deal because it was the only thing out of the main things that Publishers could measure to some extent.