Scams, Uncategorized

How Authors Detect Scams.

I read countless articles about publishing, both traditional houses and self publishing, and educated myself so I could avoid a nightmare. I hoped.

The first traditional contract asked for money in many areas. I moved on to another traditional house after acceptance. The contract was negotiable, and in the end, it served as the dream contract. My publisher claimed my MS to edit herself, as she related to my story. Unfortunately, she fell ill and couldn’t continue.

Now pay attention. This publisher I speak of, let’s call her Jane, happened to be in a Facebook group for writers, and its numbers were about 5,000. Years back, she took a boot camp course with the group with a self publisher. The owner of the group, the self publisher, knew I signed on with her. He came up in chat asked about a month or so into my contract signing how it went so far. I explained my frustration with the editing hold ups. He asked more questions then disappeared from chat for 10 minutes. When he came back he told me I was free. He cancelled my contract and gave her an author  and took me. I felt stunned, contacted Jane and completed termination as self publisher man told me many not good things about Jane’s editing skills.

Notice he played on my emotions.

That should have been enough for me to run; however, I sat in the middle of edits, now with no publisher. He told me of all the wonderful things he could do to make my MS into a book and put it up on Amazon. No matter how much I had read, my emotions at the time were stronger than my logic, and he, let’s call him Ralph, knew it.

Since, They All Wore Black had all production fees poured into it. I paid for all of it, including the ISBN numbers for e-book and paperback, and he never invoiced me or supplied recipes, not even income tax receipts of any kind. If Revenue Canada approaches me, I will send them Ralph’s way.

During the editing process, he never encouraged, but discouraged. I heard al the looked wrong in my MS, but nothing which could view as right. I took insults and nearly lost my confidence in a mS I work on fro  countless hours. He told me I was a storyteller, and storytellers rarely make good writers. Honestly, this things he said were of no value to serve an author with confidence. I actually shed quiet tears while reading some editing comments, yet in the end, I have numerous excellent reviews.

Nonetheless, before my reviews even came from readers. I knew I had money to make back money. Ralph encouraged me to buy books telling me I’d make my money back pretty quick. And long before the late contract arrived after all publishing finished, Ralph never told me if I buy books, he will take 100% of Amazon sales to recover his costs. His costs? 

Also in the contract it stated an author could take their book from Ralph’s company respectfully. After much preparation, I walked away. I wrote him an email, finally got an answer—he doesn’t answer e-mails. But I got a scathing Facebook message about leaving.  When he saw it wouldn’t stop me from succeeding, he sent a message telling me I had to get a new book cover, saying he paid for my cover and it was his property. He forbid me from using it, even went to my author’s page, where I never saw him, to tell me again. I found the proof in PayPal and presented. Another message came to say, “Fine! Keep everything you’ve got and I REALLY, REALLY hope you succeed!” Sarcasm one-O-one as he has been told to take my work down from Amazon, and he has not.

Pay attention: Ralph put the Amazon account and ISBN numbers in his company name. Now not that is matters as the work is mine with my name attached to it, but he also put the © in his company name. The copyright is all I have true ownership of, despite it being on the technical page. Then the  printer, Ingram, same thing, an account in his name. He locked it all up. I paid the start-up fees for Ingram and Amazon, and I bought those ISBN numbers. As a result, I cannot get help from Amazon easily to have my work removed from his name. We have been communications to try and come up with a solution.

The bottom line here is, no matter how educated you are about intellectual property, a scammer who has much experience can do this to you too. Be careful in writers’ groups. Beware of anything sounding too good. Beware of publishers who steps on other publisher’s toes.

You’re welcome to message me.

Thanks for reading.

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Dyslexia, encouragement, Human Behaviour, Human Nature, information, Uncategorized

LD or DL: Learning Disabilities or Different Learning

Some call them learning disabilities. They are not. They’re learning differences; a person is differently abled.

I have dyslexia. Sure, I have to triple check for reversals, and spelling errors light up red lines in my manuscripts and Facebook posts, but I’m not a disabled writer.

In fact, dyslexia enables my aptitude for descriptive writing and character development. I see scenarios in my mind, and I hear what characters are saying. I feel their joy, fear, courage, and agony. Emotions swell like surfers’ waves on pages. My imagination is prolific. I see in images, not words. I record with my fingertips, usually hunched over my keyboard in a deep concentration as I take on the fly-on-the-wall role.

This and outstanding spacial skills are the gifts of dyslexia. I’m a good shot; I’ll win all those stuffed animals at the fair with a flimsy gun, and I hang things on my walls in an even row or estimate space and size with no measuring tape.

I am able to read and write, I just have a different way of doing these things. And I ingest a lot of caffeine. It’s one of my coping tools. Cheers!

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past the season lights, suspicious neighbours, Uncategorized

Seems It’s Never Too Late For Christmas Lights

So many people have the same problem with the cold. Travelling the side streets, resting Christmas lights are common. It’s too friggin’ cold to take them down. They just hang there, unlit, unremarkable, collecting street salt mist since it’s January 29th.

From my back door window, across the street, a blaze continues nightly. It’s not an elaborate scene, but Christmas lights burning nonetheless. One porch railing has white lights, the other golden, soft white. A wrapping of pine needle rope is decorated with blue, green, and red lights. There’s a wreath in the midst of it. It’s lit up, too. Balls hang off the rope—what’s left of them. Looks like a solitary Santa hanging there as well, clinking against lights when the wind blows. The whole lawn is illuminated by this created light fest.

I’m not in the least bothered by this—because I don’t have to take it all down and find a space to cram it, but I’m amused. I’m in the habit now of looking each night to see if they’ve decided it’s too late for Christmas lights. Seems it’s not ever too late. But it’s late  January now… the Christmas ship has sailed so to speak.

When will they take their Christmas lights down? Maybe they won’t. These neighbours are elderly. Not ancient, but grey poking out from their wooly hats says they probably don’t care what others think. We get to an age when the important issues are: did the bran work?; trying not to forget where we just set down a mug of coffee; when’s my kid coming to show me how to manage the latest technology of the snazzy elliptical needed for exercise; where’s the Tylenol, and who ate the last of the damn ice cream. So let the lights burn. It’s too much to remove them in the cold, and why waste a display.  Live for what’s important.

I suppose if the colours are still lit next month, I should ask if they’d like help. But what if they push me off the porch with a broom. What if they call the cops because I’m trepassing? See? This is the thing. Sometimes neighbours we don’t really know are grateful for help, sometimes they’re too suspicious. I could get my ass kicked by a couple married of forty years. Don’t laugh. These people could own cast iron frying pans. I can barely pick, never mind cook with it.

But if I don’t ask, I may be able to amuse myself throughout the summer with the countdown until those lights are valid once again.

Live and let lights burn. I’d post a photo, but I didn’t want to step foot near the lights for fear of a small, fast dog. Those little ones have a good aim. Their bite surely is as bad as their bark. Haha~ Well, that’s it. All I had to say.

Thanks for reading.

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Uncategorized

Benefits of Complaining?

When the weather doesn’t suit us, when the roads are too bumpy, when we have to wait too long… who doesn’t complain?

We are risking being sucked down into a spiral of negativity. One complain leaving the mouth open the gates for darkening our minds. Sounds a little over the top, but if you thing about it, it’s true. Perhaps a woman complains to a friend about her husband, when’s the last time it stopped at one issue?

We humans have a hard time waiting. Technology zips things into place in a second. Waiting is an exercise in patience. Nobody likes it. We live in a fast-paced world. This pace makes it even more difficult for those who have mental illness to contend with. It’s the rushing that makes mentally ill people panic and second-guess themselves. Not because they’re slow, rather because they know, innately, urgency produces worry. Back to the spiral again with that. People who are not mentally ill experience the needling emotions nonetheless. Rushing a meal causes hiccups and indigestion. Rushing things in our lives causes panic, oversight.

Personally, I am waiting for something important right now. You are, too. We all are, at different intervals of our lives. All I can suggest is what I have recently learned: complaining slows things down. Being fixated on the time it takes for something, drags out the process in my mind. This can literally be likened, on a smaller scale, to waiting for a kettle to boil.

If we’re waiting for a legal document, it’s far better to engage in reading and learning about said subject rather than allow our minds to become preoccupied with the wait. “All things in good time,” although we fight against the adage as a result of impatience.

Unless we are complaining to bring about a much needed favourable change, it’s best to be thankful for all circumstances. Blessing arise from thanking. Seems too weird to be true? Test it and see, go back and remember hard times that were a blessing in disguise.

If situations were not overtly blessings, then they were lessons for our own progress in this fallen world. Those lessons are gruelling; however, not one meaningful accomplishment is borne of our comfort zone.

Thanks for reading, God bless—cheers~

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Uncategorized

A Poem about Summer Slovens

AS IF ANGRY

She began as if friendly,
That pretty day,
To mother the throng in the park,
To permit their play.

No angst and no reason to abandon their plans
To line up for climbs, twists and plummets
On steep skeletal frames.
For some, a summertime dare to prepare
For psychotic amusement—pitch dark to unnerve
—Silent ghosts appear to touch, taunt and scare.
On this sumptuous day,
Perhaps paltry prizes
For enduring game gamblers,
Or one could gorge on sweets, greasy ribs
And fat burgers.

Crushed pop cans, foam cups, candy floss holders; Waxed wrappers, wasted serviettes, lost tickets,
Even striped straws smeared with lipstick…
All was well for the trash-dripping humans
Creating weak Ozone—no concern.

She began as if nurturing, that gentle day.
But her breath was the warning,
Tenacious and damp,
As if to blow on a long cake
Too large to guess age or count candles.
No other caution she gave,
Not even to musicians plugged into the band shell.
She came as if angry.
Somber mood and thunderous steps;
Blew down a few tents;
Knocked over a petite human guest.

She brought with her a bruised sky.
Bright spikes from those crowded clouds
Tore through steel-grey’s supple flesh.
And then, her stern rain.

Mama-atmosphere at first had smiled,
Endorsing their frolic outside,
Yet it seemed she had lied.
She chastised once more,
An emotional tone,
And let her cold tears pour,
Forcing the throng to clear
Allowing her to cleanse the Slovens’ playpen.

For this is Planet Earth;
First hers, not theirs.

Alas, the humans would be back;
Litter scattered.
Disrespect.

And so she brewed…
She’d be back, too.

L. P. Penner

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Uncategorized

Ladies, would you help me?

I need opinions, that’s all, and I know women love to help one another. I will not find you and spam you, I absolutely promise.

I’m preparing my novel for marketing in the traditional publishing setting, and my most interested beta readers are women. My synopsis is only 140 words. Would you please indicate if indeed you can imagine yourself curled up with this realistic fiction?

They All Wore Black concerns a traumatized, hushed up family struggling to learn it’s okay to cry out:

Brad Fadden trudges with his head down and his guard up. His deviant father died, but Brad aches with raw, nauseating secrets. Haunting memories. His haggard mother is reticent about it. His protective sister fled eight years ago because of it.

It’s 1988. Ganja, cocaine, pills—easy scores. Even so, fifteen-year-old Brad’s illusion of escape does not subdue his crippling emotions. He’s off to harass his dead father’s socially inept boozing pal who guards the pivotal truth, and that fearful sot may be the only one who knows it.

A peculiar old man intermittently appears to caution Brad about addictions and fact seeking, leaving him to think he’s hallucinating, but the kid won’t stop prying. They say, “The truth will set you free.” They’re wrong.

Thanks for your help, ladies.

Lynn

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