Has anyone ever done this / is it just a crap idea?

(9 Posts)
Bearface Thu 01-Nov-12 18:02:02

Hi

Just thought I'd add authonomy.com, which is run by Harper Collins. This is a big community and it works by people reading and critiquing each others' work. They have a chart and people can put you their 'bookshelf'. The more bookshelves you are on, the higher up the chart you go. At the end of every month the top 5 books go to the Harper Collins editor's desk for review and comment. Some of these have subsequently published. You don't have to upload the whole book, but the minimum is 10,000 words. It's really good for testing the waters (although you have to ignore some criticism which isn't constructive) and you hold onto your copyright. I've used it and found it useful. Personally, I wouldn't necessarily upload a whole book, but some people do. Hope this is of use aswell. smile

BackOnceAgainWithLoopyLoops Wed 24-Oct-12 17:04:03

Thank you ever so much, that's really helpful smile

And yes, links are fine.

BethBeth Wed 24-Oct-12 10:57:11

Putting part of your work on a site for advice and feedback can be harrowing sad but also very rewarding, although as Punkatheart has mentioned, publishers will count a piece as already being published if it is up in its entirety on the web. Deleting it won't help after the event either as Google and other search engines keep archives of webpages so it could still be found.

I am always too shy to show family and friends my work but I find the anonymity of a site with other writers on it gives me valid feedback from people that should know a bit about the writing experience (and occasionally some downright rude people but you have to ignore un-constructive criticism and move on).

I've only just started posting here so I hope I can put links to other sites in answer to your question?
www.writingforums.org is US based but has loads of members so is very helpful for critiques as well as lots of topics about writing generally. I have just heard about a UK based one though called www.pocketread.co.uk - it is very new though so I don't know how many people would be on-line to critique your work at this stage.
Hope that helps and whatever you do, keep writing,

BackOnceAgainWithLoopyLoops Sun 14-Oct-12 02:28:41

Do you have any tips on finding a good writing site for critique please?

Thanks smile

Punkatheart Sat 13-Oct-12 21:19:33

Personally I would not put it on a blog but possibly on a password-protected writing site.

Great advice from Tunip.

You do need some feedback (other than family and friends) to help you.

TunipTheVegemal Sat 13-Oct-12 20:39:34

Better to complete the whole thing before sending. Otherwise the agent/publisher won't know you're capable of a sustained piece of writing. I'm sure there are examples of a first novel being bought on the strength of a couple of chapters but it would have to be incredibly brilliant and incredibly fortunate and I would imagine that in the current economic climate this is less likely than ever. Plus I would think the risk is, even if the chapters did to turn out to be totally amazing and an agent was interested, you might get freaked out by the pressure and get writer's block and never manage to finish it.

If you see this book mainly as a way to develop your writing skills and you don't have a writers' group or judicious friends to encourage and advise you, then blogging it might be a way to get that kind of support - though you would have to be thick-skinned because you would probably get nasty comments too (even if it's good) and you would need to not be put off by that.

BackOnceAgainWithLoopyLoops Sat 13-Oct-12 16:54:07

I see your point.

Is it standard these days to complete a few chapters and synopsis before sending to agents, or would it be better to complete the whole thing?

Punkatheart Sat 13-Oct-12 16:38:31

If it is openly available, you are officially 'published' by some agent/editor standards. I have seen famous writers uploading their first chapter - to gauge interest - but I can't see the point of giving it all away for free. So why not complete three chapters and a synopsis, then send it out instead?

BackOnceAgainWithLoopyLoops Sat 13-Oct-12 15:30:07

I have planned out my novel, I know what I want to write chapter by chapter and have written the first chapter.

I know editing would make this tricky, but I had an idea and wondered if anyone else does this...

What are your thoughts on loading your book onto a blog, chapter by chapter, as you write it?

Obviously it would then be hard to sell at the end, so would have to find a way of generating income somehow. Any ideas? (Or should I just stop being stupid and write the bloody book?)

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