LibraryThing - Picture

originally posted by Reading_fox

Hi Janny.

First let me say I’ve enjoyed all the work of yours that I’ve read. Not much, but I’m getting there slowly.

I don’t know if you have heard of LibraryThing.com but they’ve heard of you! (It’s a website for users to catalog, rate, review and talk about their books) Your page is http://www.librarything.com/author/wurtsjanny here, and is lacking a photo. Who should I contact to obtain copyright permission for a photo of you? Copyright is attributed as required.

Many Thanks for your time and your writing!

PS
If you are interested in cataloging your own books LibraryThing has a special LibraryThing Authors section.

Hi fox -

wow, I really appreciate your taking the time to post this here - any resource that can help an author be discovered is invaluable.

Yes, you can have a picture - not all the ones shown on my website are able to be posted elsewhere, for copyright issues, but the one with the horse next to the author was taken by my husband, Don Maitz, and may be used with appropriate credit.

You can contact Jeff Watson at www.paravia.com

originally posted by Matthew

Wow another Mancunian - small world :smiley: welcome to the board.

Reading fox - I visited the site you posted.

It looks to be a nice corner of the internet for readers to exchange their views - I was quite impressed.

And puzzled - since the overall impression of the group, concerning my works, was more liked them than not.

But they seem a very strangely silent group - you seem the only one there vocal about my titles, and your comments appeared not to generate support, although lots of people have the books listed in their libraries -

Any comments?

Any comments from you other readers about the contents on other forums? Buzz about a title is so very critical in keeping a flow of new readers discovering what is available to them - a trip to the bookshop can be a barrage to the senses, and sometimes forum discussion is a great ticket to matching interests to readers.

Just author curiosity, about what you think, since you appear to be a regular on that site.

originally posted by Trys

I've added a photo to Janny's page on LibraryThing.com. If memory serves, that is Phil shown with her.

originally posted by Reading_fox

Wow, such fast responses!

THANKS Janny for the permission and Trys for the uploading before I checked back here.

Regarding LibraryThing: I don't know why there isn't more vocal/frequent mention of your work. The 205000 odd users are a very disperate group, but fantasy readers do make up a significant number. I know my recent review of Sorcerer's Legacy has persueded one more user to add to their buy list, which is a (slow) start.

Continued prescence within the various talk discussions will lead to more fans in time. Many of the LT users are there to pickup new suggestions. The over-awed by choice feelings in bookshops, and even worse online, is certainly a factor.

Do feel free to visit and contribute! It was originally primarily a cataloging site but the forum pages are very active. If you are confused leave me a comment (here or there) and I'll try, if I know enough, to enlighten you.

Reading fox - I have yet to check on how to take your suggestion and start an author presence there (my perusal was quick, to read what was in the offing, and when I finished my day's proofing of Stormed Fortress's copyedit, and came back for the re-run, the page would not load). I will get to that when the site comes back up.

The one comment I have now (and it's observational, not loaded) is that your efforts there are more than not supported - of the very few reviews (four???) posted opposite my listed titles, (one book with two, and two books with only one) two are one line negatives - passionately honest from the one poster's point of view, but glaring for the fact they were not written by folks who understood, far less appreciated, the story that was crafted onto my pages.

Let me say I respect this - in fact we read for many reasons. Sometimes for a joyride, sometimes to escape, sometimes to twist our perceptions, and sometimes to make us think and discover. I too, like to joy ride and escape, but I also value discovery.

I can appreciate that a joyrider or an escapee doesn't want to experience that perceptive shift, or plunge in depth, when they're coasting - and reviews wanting sweetness alone, or a surface skip with no impact, sometimes damn a title that's aligned to take their reading journey in another direction.

I was dead curious about whether the readers on that site were just sheep, that not ONE of the many folks who listed the books on their shelves dared to enter a contrasting opinion.

That certainly could color how your comments are received - nothing catches on like enthusiasm, and nothing sparks talk like controversy. A negative comment left to stand on its own assumes too much weight - uncontested, it's interpreted much like a voice of authority. (why television ads are so effective, because to your subconscious, you can't talk back to refute them)

The lack of contrasting reviews further made me wonder - do we do too good a job here at Paravia - do the readers who really love an unpredictable destination, and a challenge that departs from the formula hang out here to the exclusion of putting opinions on other forums?

Does the panning crowd rule, or am I stuck in a niche as an "elitist writer" - ?

Off the cuff, I could mention several wildly best selling fantasy authors whose use of language is a right mouthful of complexity - BIG words - grin - ( and I've said before, I don't know WHICH words these are) - that people read and nobody blinks. And equally, could reel off several more, who have no concept of words, slap them about with imprecise usage and awful construction - and nobody blinks, either.

I have read and even loved both angles - being an individual who believes that the STORY prevails.

What's your thought? Why the sparsity of challengers to those slamming reviews, and so few of them into the bargain?

These are questions I am asking, you betcha, because Stormed Fortress's hardbound has just been cut back. Until that changes, it will be tough to find on the shelves of a public library, that often invite a new reader.

Though of course, the right combination of word of mouth and attraction can shift a book's track on a dime.

How can I. and the presence available at Paravia, support your effort? I thank you for introducing Sorcerer's Legacy - which was, by the way, my first novel.

Especially given the hardback cut, I think it's even more important to give positive word of mouth to the FIRST arc, and try to increase its availability as much as possible – were I a new reader, a single binding "from the beginning" story would do more to hook me than the latest section of the story in progress.

originally posted by Reading_fox

A bit short of time, I'll come back and add some more when I get the chance.

Trys - Please can you log back into LibraryThing and add a link to this page with something along the lines of "permission from author at" - in addition to attributing copyright, LT needs permission too.

Reviews: Wow, they are very harsh. Only about 1% of books get reviewed on LT which is why the numbers are low. LT readers are in general are the most dedicated book loving people I've met in cyberspace very forthright in their opinions, with few sheep. The way LT is organised means you wouldn't necessarily know the content of other reviews before you write your own - so there is no challenge as such.

RL calls. More later.

originally posted by Trys

Reading fox,

Sorry I'm not quite following what you're asking me to do at LibraryThing. Adding a link I'm sure I can figure out, but I'm not sure what I'm identifying as 'permission…'

Trys

I said I was impressed by the mature discussions on LibraryThing.
But -
What incentive, to try any book, if you checked in and saw such a review posted, but uncontested…our experience here at Paravia shows that more lurkers read the available material than ever make the attempt to post…you have to read a book, before you trouble to review it, and what piques your interest to make the attempt?

Somebody posting a basher but definitely wants to warn off the general public. Somebody posting about a great experience wants to share that, and invite them in…a good clash incites interest. Who can walk past an argument, and not look long enough to poke into the gist of it?

Again, to further an equitable conversation - even if the reviews run at only one percent of the titles, they are quite prominently shown, and linked, when a listed author's page comes up.

I did get back in, and rummaged about pretty thoroughly, but did not find any navigation that would show where an author could establish the presence you mention. Your offer of help is genuinely requested - I don't know where to look, either, for pertinent discussion beyond what is linked on that page.

Brian Uri - Paravia posts excerpts from the first volume - are you feeling we lack something, or could provide material here that may help? Usually, our visitors are people who have found the books already, and are looking for more complete information… other.information that is spontaneously at large in the mainstream of the internet - often can't be, or looks puffishly self-centered, when presented by the author - and so gets ignored or resented as intrusive advertising by resident posters, quite often with reason - who wants a book touted by its inventor in the middle of an ongoing forum by readers? I've watched internet etiquette, unwritten between the lines, here, and try to behave with respect…in the case of Paravia, we pay for, and provide, this space gratis for the service of the readers. We can't host the whole gamut, for everything published, so our Book Nook area recommends and discusses quite freely, but without hosting dedicated topic threads for other authors.

Also, in my case, internet surfing takes waaaay back seat, to the available time I have - if I am to continue to avoid formulaic, repetitious storylines. (no question there - grin)

I am so glad you came here to point to this site - it is provoking some interesting thinking.

I don't think this site is lacking in the least – the excerpts, supporting information and interviews, and the chance to actually converse with the author are all wonderful! I do agree that this site is "preaching to the choir" a bit, and that is fine.

I was thinking more along the lines of word of mouth from us, the choir, rather than increased advertisement (which WOULD probably annoy new readers rather than intrigue them) or anything related to the site. I just know that if I were to see Stormed Fortress on the shelf as a new reader, the FIRST thing I'd do is look to see if there are earlier books in the series, and then try to start from the beginning. If I couldn't find that first book to start from, I'd probably feel less inclined to give the series a shot. When I tell my friends about the series, I ALWAYS start them with CotM.

So, this was more of a "this is how I would feel as a new reader" post than a "someone really needs to get cracking and do something!" post :smiley:

Brian - we're strategizing to break that catch-22.

Word of mouth = mounting an invasion.

(grin)

originally posted by Reading_fox

I hope I’m okay adding lots of links in this post - they all go to different parts of LibraryThing (LT because I’m too lazy to type it every time!)

Trys - There is a difference between attributing copyright and permission to use said copyright. A discussion http://www.librarything.com/talktopic.php?topic=2529 here post #5 gives some idea of what is required. I think you click on the 1 picture link under the photo itself to edit the information.

The main entry portal is http://www.librarything.com this includes a tour and quickstart guide to the basics.

LTauthor - Some of the basics are in the green sidebar on http://www.librarything.com/librarything_author this page. I know great respect is paid whenever an LTauthor is present in Talk. Readers are always honoured when an author can spare them some time. I’m overawed at the attention I’ve recieved here! I know only too well how the web eats into RL :wink:

From higher up “How can I. and the presence available at Paravia, support your effort?” Join LT and spread the word of course! Add Janny’s books to your catalogs and write some glowing reviews. Add other books too! Mention them in Talk. I wouldn’t want to distract you all from the tightly focused group you have here though! LT can be addictive!

A breif LT background. LT was originally set-up to store marginalia, however the creator realised that first a decent book catalogging site would be required, this grow into a more shared social area connecting readers of one book to readers of another. The marginalia store still hasn’t arrived. It IS commercial, no adverts though. If you wish to store more than 200 books TIM requests a payment, although ALL areas of the site are available to all users irrespective of how many books they have catalogged. It is widely disparete in users, many only read non-fiction, many are classical scholars, many only read SF etc. Many don’t use the social features at all. Some only do so.

“Word of mouth = mounting an invasion.” - I’m sure LT would welcome any new members! A Harry Potter 12yr old style SQUUEE It R Gr8, probably wouldn’t go down too well, and I’m not sure what the position is on authors touting their own work is, but choice comments from fans are always appreciated. As I said earlier many people on LT are there specifically to pick up new reads, they’d hate to have overlooked a cracker, just because of one bad review.

I would certainly agree with Brian that CotM is THE title that needs publicising. *blushes* I haven’t read any of the Wars of Light and Shadow, exactly because of this problem - I want to start at the beginning and CotM is seldom on the shelf.

This has got a bit long so I’ll stop now. Anything else you want to know?

originally posted by Trys

ReaderFox,

The picture is there and unless LT does something (quarantines it… removes it…) I don't see that there's really anything I need to do. As to some of what I read… there is no place on the web to point to that says Don granted rights to use the image. He granted them to me verbally so long as I give credit which I have. So let's see what happens.

Trys

Reader fox, thank you very much!

Based on the readers posting here, their conduct and quality of thoughtfulness is much on a par with what I saw in the discussions at Librarything -and I have met a few of my 12 year old readers - they are stars, every one of them, I'd be proud of what they had to say.

I will but definitely check out the links you have set up here. What a gift! If authors are well received, I will make my moment and give it a try. Polite people and erudite controversy are fun and stimulating - I don't want to live in a world where everybody has to agree, but I do value respect for differences.

As to the people here - they're an outspoken, thinking, independent bunch! They will do as they please with regard to an invasion - but I think you will find, if they charge on board, they love many cool books in common with some that were touted very strongly in the discussions I peeped into.

With regard to Curse of the Mistwraith not being on the shelves - until the late hiccup in US publishing and distribution gets solved - it can still be ordered (along with the rest of the series) from HarperCollins in Great Britain or Australia. (amazon.co.uk is an option, as is Galaxy Books in Australia).

Past that, there are excerpts of that book, and To Ride Hell's Chasm, posted on my site, as well as an MP3 audio file from a chapter of Wars of Light and Shadow/Fugitive Prince that can be downloaded free to any ipod - and LibraryThing readers are most welcome to peruse that material at whim, Or ask any readers here, or read the Book Nook for suggested titles people liked (0r the considered reasons why they didn't). I suspect that list would be of interest, based on what I saw.

I am always available here for questions and discussion - I also have an author's blog on Amazon.com, and I look forward now to checking into adding on some sort of presence at LibraryThing, if it's viable.

As to mounting an invasion - charge ahead! This crowd here is pretty trustworthy and waaaay too intelligent for the idiot factor you precautioned against. If anybody, also, can register and post a review, well, they can defend the turf if they're minded to.

I truly appreciate, again, the time you've taken for this, and hope that your efforts find a welcome. From me, they have. Sites like this are gems.

I hope that we see more of you here, too. There is a long archive in the Book Nook that doubtless might provide a list of titles you'd enjoy. I do post my favorites there as well, from time to time, and always include why I mentioned them.

Reader fox - I've joined, registered, and logged 54 titles in my library. Now, I've applied to the author program…so - we're off!

originally posted by Reading_fox

Very glad to see you and all the other Pavarians there. I note there have been one or two slightly more favourable reviews, I'm guessing came from here? Always welcome!

Would you like a big fanfare welcome into one fo the more active groups, or should I let you announce yourself in your own time?

Reading Fox -

Very kind of you - do what you like - just warn me where to look, if you do choose to move - I am still "orienting" and don't yet know where the hot discussions of fantasy are being conducted. (Took me a bit just to catalogue the requisite fifty titles, as I included as many authors and as wide a selection as possible).

Anybody who put stuff up in my favor - bless you all for the supportive effort. It means a lot - as I work my way through the pages of the copy edit for Stormed Fortress, that need far more work than I thought.

originally posted by Reading_fox

I’ve invited you to the two main fantasy groups and left an introduction message here : http://www.librarything.com/talktopic.php?topic=13236

Anyone else here who wants invites (not needed the groups are very friendly to passersby) leave a message here or on my profile there.