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Antifragile

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I finally pulled the trigger and got 12 months for Jarvis. :) kind of exciting times for me.
 

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MTF

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I finally pulled the trigger and got 12 months for Jarvis. :) kind of exciting times for me.

I reacted with "wow" but to be honest I'm also considering this. I use it for fiction writing a lot as it has become one of my main writing tools (alongside Thesaurus.com, Google, and Sudowrite).
 

Antifragile

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I’ve been using it enough for the 1st months to say that it would “hurt” if I didn’t have access to it next month. One of those things that once experienced, hard to go back… it’s expensive, yet I also spend a killing on our PR agency! This tool helps me all around. Hence the decision…
 

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Short-term it can work great. Long-term I don't really see an author building a solid international fan base if they only sell on one site. In general, business-wise it's a terrible move to have only one distributor. I know that it only applies to e-books (though most authors are also exclusive to ACX for audiobooks) but it's still a big limitation and a dangerous move long-term.

I'm now writing fiction and I don't plan to enroll in KU regardless of the genre I'm going to end up writing.

Agreed. I've always leaned towards wide distribution (especially since I write books under 50k words).

I do sometimes question, however, where book publishing is heading. Will it go down the same route of subscriptions/mass consumption like Netflix has for TV/movies and Spotify for music or will there always be a market of buyers?

Who knows. I do think if they rope more reputable authors into the programme, the tide could sway that way.
 

Joker_P5R

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100%.

Which is the reason why I can't make non-fiction work anymore for me. A few years ago, you could hit it big without having a personal brand. Amazon helped promote books that you put on their radar through your initial efforts. These days, more marketing is needed and people want to know the author behind the book, want to see the author's blog, YouTube channel, Instagram profile, etc. I don't want to sell my life like that.

There are possibly some non-fiction niches where you could get away without doing this (or even without an author name) but I'm not sure if I still want to write non-fiction. I have one idea in mind but it's not something I'm extremely fired up about so writing a series of books might be a challenge.

That's one of the reasons why I'm learning how to write fiction. Very few people care who's behind a novel they enjoy. It's the fictional characters they care about.
I agree with that.
Furthermore, I don't like to sell my life this way, like you think.
For fiction book, do you already have, or plan to have, a dedicated website?

You talk about several books you sold in the past since 2006. Do you have build this business only with your main website think8020 or do you have a bunch of other websites you create only to market your new selfpublished books?
 

Antifragile

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Slightly unrelated to the overall thread, but I’ve enjoyed your Website post @MTF

“Why You Need Slack in Your Life”​

Curious, could you see your think80/20 as a potential fastlane similar to fs ? Shane built it into a real business, with employees and all. I’m sure he’s fastlane now with helping buy companies etc.
 

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I do sometimes question, however, where book publishing is heading. Will it go down the same route of subscriptions/mass consumption like Netflix has for TV/movies and Spotify for music or will there always be a market of buyers?

Yeah it's tough to predict what's going to happen. Logic would say that it would eventually follow other media, particularly for fiction that few people ever read twice. Non-fiction is more often used for reference so owning it makes more sense.

For now, traditional publishing houses still have incredible power and say over the market so they would block any real attempts at disruption. But eventually... who knows.

Who knows. I do think if they rope more reputable authors into the programme, the tide could sway that way.

It's not about the authors but about the publishing houses. If a traditionally-published author (and most "reputable" authors are still traditionally-published) has a nice lucrative deal with a publisher, it's understandable they'd rather stick to it than risk it going on their own.

As far as I know Amazon sometimes allows big names to be in KDP Select without requiring them to be exclusive (which is IMO extremely unfair to indie authors but that's another topic). As long as they require exclusivity from the authors, "streaming" books won't become super mainstream.

For fiction book, do you already have, or plan to have, a dedicated website?

Yes I'll probably set up an author website for the newsletter and stuff.

You talk about several books you sold in the past since 2006. Do you have build this business only with your main website think8020 or do you have a bunch of other websites you create only to market your new selfpublished books?

I started publishing in 2014. Think8020.com is my hobby project where I sometimes post my thoughts that could be relevant to the members of this forum. It doesn't make me any money (it actually costs money to maintain the newsletter).

I have a website for my main pen name but it doesn't do anything, it mostly serves as a way to contact me and sign up for the newsletter.

Slightly unrelated to the overall thread, but I’ve enjoyed your Website post @MTF

“Why You Need Slack in Your Life”​

Curious, could you see your think80/20 as a potential fastlane similar to fs ? Shane built it into a real business, with employees and all. I’m sure he’s fastlane now with helping buy companies etc.

As mentioned above, it's my hobby project. I rarely post there these days. I guess I could start posting more often but I'm not sure if I want to head this way. It would most likely require me to get so involved into it I wouldn't be able to write fiction. It also borders on self-help which is a controversial topic I'm not sure I want to write about for a living.
 

Joker_P5R

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We've worked really hard with Open AI to have our own safeguards in place here that don't limit fiction writers. When using the default safety filter we found the same thing you did: way too content was being erroneously tagged as sensitive/toxic.




Not yet. We may throw the doors open so people can sign up easily right away in the coming months, but the software will likely be 'beta' for a while. All that means is that it's likely to change a lot as we improve it.

The only obstacles we have stopping us from going completely open right now are:

1) We want the product to be better. We want the first-time experience to be easier.

2) We have some limits in place from OpenAI's side. As they gain trust in our filtering (see #1 above), those should be lifted.

3) Pricing/costs -- We've optimized entirely for the quality of output and stayed away from cost-cutting. Unfortunately, that means that while quality is high, it's quite expensive to run. We may create multiple pricing tiers or change pricing before throwing the doors open to make the numbers more tenable. (Will grandfather in existing subscribers as long as possible.)



We do some prompt engineering to prime GPT-3 to provide relevant twists based on genre. But mixing and matching works well. What genres would you like to see added?



Yes haha. It feels like science-fiction. When James and I started playing around with this tech last year we couldn't believe what I was capable of.



Yep! I think the best writing is going to be created not by humans alone or AIs alone, but by collaboration between the two. We want to sit at that intersection and enable humans to go further, faster.
Amit,

Do you already have multiple input/output language?
 

Joker_P5R

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I'd like to follow up MJ's point about the key importance of editing, even with Jarvis AI.

I asked @Madame Peccato some feedback about Jarvis in italian: I shared the topic and the context to input into the AI. Then I got a text.

My first impression: although it's helpful to overcome writer's block, I agree with @MJ DeMarco when he said that editing become the most important action, that take a lot of time.

I see that the tone of voice is flat, without personality, almost dead. You can get ideas from it but it's only a little hint, a prodding to your brain to go ahead writing.

Besides, all the information that AI "throws out" to build its sentences need to be checked to verify if informations are correct or not. And this is, maybe, the most time-waster operation.

I'm sure that AI will play a prominent role in writing industry from several years. But, for now, I see impossible for an AI to reproduce human personality and nuances of languages (especially the most complex like Italian or Spanish that have a lot of grammar rules).

I'm working on building a digital and interactive dictionary (italian only for now) that can support writers with local sayings, metaphors, rhetorical figures in order to be able to rewrite sentences with figurative language that can be more effective to reader's brain.

IMO it can be a useful supportive tool for everyone that want to become a copywriter and a content writer. You must be able to write well. Write well will be always more effective than every single copywriting pattern that you can buy from a so-called guru (that merely copy and paste someone else's work).
 
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MTF

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I was wondering about one thing...

In interviews, bestselling fiction writers usually say that they had to write their books because they needed to tell the story that was in their head.

I'm not wired like that. I write primarily to make money. If somebody told me I wouldn't be able to make money off writing, I wouldn't write anymore.

Do you think you need to share the "I need to tell the story" mindset to succeed on a big level? Or are they outliers among millions of writers who also had to "tell their stories" but never managed to make anything off them? Or are they saying it because it sounds nice but in reality their priority was also money, not art?
 

Antifragile

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Artsy people say all kinds of things. Who know what’s really going on in their minds?

This is a business for you. It likely was a business for some world class writers too.
 

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BizyDad

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Do you think you need to share the "I need to tell the story" mindset to succeed on a big level? Or are they outliers among millions of writers who also had to "tell their stories" but never managed to make anything off them? Or are they saying it because it sounds nice but in reality their priority was also money, not art?
No I don't think you need that mindset.

But I also don't think their priority is money. I think most writers don't go into it thinking they're going to get a lot of money. Sure, there are likely exceptions, I can't name any because I doubt anyone would publicly admit it.

I do think you need the mindset that you're working on your craft. Whether you consider it art, or just telling a story, I think you need to be great at your craft. I think a reader can tell when you're mailing it in just to get a check.
 

MTF

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This is a business for you. It likely was a business for some world class writers too.

Good point. Maybe few of them would admit it but that's right.

I do think you need the mindset that you're working on your craft. Whether you consider it art, or just telling a story, I think you need to be great at your craft. I think a reader can tell when you're mailing it in just to get a check.

That makes sense. I treat this very seriously, possibly too much as I often question if it's any good (even though I saw way worse fiction doing well).
 

Joker_P5R

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Vorrei seguire il punto di MJ sull'importanza chiave dell'editing, anche con Jarvis AI.

Ho chiesto a @Madame Peccato un feedback su Jarvis in italiano: ho condiviso l'argomento e il contesto da inserire nell'AI. Poi ho ricevuto un messaggio.

La mia prima impressione: sebbene sia utile per superare il blocco dello scrittore, sono d'accordo con @MJ DeMarco quando ha detto che l'editing diventa l'azione più importante, che richiede molto tempo.

Vedo che il tono di voce è piatto, senza personalità, quasi morto. Puoi ottenere idee da esso, ma è solo un piccolo suggerimento, una spinta al tuo cervello per andare avanti a scrivere.

Inoltre, tutte le informazioni che AI "butta fuori" per costruire le sue frasi devono essere controllate per verificare se le informazioni sono corrette o meno. E questa è, forse, l'operazione che fa perdere più tempo.

Sono sicuro che l'IA giocherà un ruolo di primo piano nell'industria della scrittura da diversi anni. Ma, per ora, vedo impossibile per un'intelligenza artificiale riprodurre la personalità umana e le sfumature delle lingue (soprattutto le più complesse come l'italiano o lo spagnolo che hanno molte regole grammaticali).

Sto lavorando alla costruzione di un dizionario digitale e interattivo (solo italiano per ora) che possa supportare gli scrittori con detti locali, metafore, figure retoriche per poter riscrivere frasi con un linguaggio figurato che possa essere più efficace per il cervello del lettore.

IMO può essere un utile strumento di supporto per tutti coloro che vogliono diventare copywriter e content writer. Devi saper scrivere bene. Scrivere bene sarà sempre più efficace di ogni singolo modello di copywriting che puoi acquistare da un cosiddetto guru (che si limita a copiare e incollare il lavoro di qualcun altro).
@MTF Mi piacerebbe conoscere la tua opinione sul mio messaggio sopra.
Per me è un feedback importante!

Grazie
 

MTF

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I see that the tone of voice is flat, without personality, almost dead. You can get ideas from it but it's only a little hint, a prodding to your brain to go ahead writing.

I've found it works pretty well for English. I wouldn't call the tone of voice flat or dead. It all depends on the input you give it. This is just an example of a sentence generated by Jarvis:

The sun was warm and it felt good to set foot on healthy soil.

I wouldn't agree it's flat or dead. In fact, it's pretty evocative in its simplicity.

While it doesn't match the beautiful tone that Sudowrite can provide, it's still extremely useful for fiction as it comes up with crazy twists that, at the same time, make a lot of sense.

I mostly use it for brainstorming or when I'm stuck. It has greatly reduced the time I stare at the screen, unsure what to write.

Besides, all the information that AI "throws out" to build its sentences need to be checked to verify if informations are correct or not. And this is, maybe, the most time-waster operation.

Yes, it's a big drawback of Jarvis for any kind of non-fiction which ultimately makes it better for fiction even though it wasn't designed for it. I'm mostly referring to Boss Mode here because the copywriting/social media templates can be definitely super valuable for copywriters.

But, for now, I see impossible for an AI to reproduce human personality and nuances of languages (especially the most complex like Italian or Spanish that have a lot of grammar rules).

Its quality is terrible for languages other than English. It doesn't mean that it's impossible for it to reproduce what you mentioned. It only means it needs to be fed more data in other languages before it gets as good as it is in English.
 

DWX

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I was wondering about one thing...

In interviews, bestselling fiction writers usually say that they had to write their books because they needed to tell the story that was in their head.

I'm not wired like that. I write primarily to make money. If somebody told me I wouldn't be able to make money off writing, I wouldn't write anymore.

Do you think you need to share the "I need to tell the story" mindset to succeed on a big level? Or are they outliers among millions of writers who also had to "tell their stories" but never managed to make anything off them? Or are they saying it because it sounds nice but in reality their priority was also money, not art?

No, I don't believe you need this to succeed, but for the sake of longevity and avoiding burnout, I think it helps to have *some* desire to write/improve craft/etc.

That said, there is this one guy who turns over $40k+ per month** writing cozy mysteries (a female-dominated genre). He's ex-military, doesn't read fiction books, doesn't plot, doesn't write to market, and breaks nearly every genre trope going.

Yet, he is more successful than most who sneeze and fart purple prose.

Why?

Not because he's a talented writer (he's the first to admit he isn't). I believe it's because he treats writing like a business.

He writes fast and publishes quickly.
He engages with fans.
He markets his books.
He doesn't treat his stories like precious little darlings - they're products.

While I cannot speak of his "love" for the craft (he doesn't talk much about that in the FB group), his numbers are his numbers.

Is he an outlier? Maybe.

But I have a sneaky suspicion there are similar writers enjoying similar successes somewhere in the shadows.

(**He publishes exclusively through KU.)
 
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Joker_P5R

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No, I don't believe you need this to succeed, but for the sake of longevity and avoiding burnout, I think it helps to have *some* level of desire to write/improve craft/etc.

That said, there is this one guy who turns over $40k+ per month** writing cozy mysteries (a female-dominated genre). He's ex-military, doesn't read fiction books, doesn't plot, doesn't write to market, and breaks nearly every genre trope going.

Yet, he is more successful than most who sneeze and fart purple prose.

Why?

Not because he's a talented writer (he's the first to admit he isn't). I believe it's because he treats writing like a business.

He writes fast and publishes quickly.
He engages with fans.
He markets his books.
He doesn't treat his stories like precious little darlings - they're products.

While I cannot speak of his "love" for the craft (he doesn't talk much about that in the FB group), his numbers are his numbers.

Is he an outlier? Maybe.

But I have a sneaky suspicion there are similar writers enjoying similar successes somewhere in the shadows.

(**He publishes exclusively through KU.)
Who's this "one guy"?
 

MTF

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An actor friend who's working with many creatives shared with me an interesting observation. In his opinion, today creative work is no longer about creativity but about productivity.

And I agree with that to a great extent.

As a creative, you want to create stuff because it's fun. Creating art is supposed to recharge you. It's only when you truly enjoy what you're doing that you can create memorable art.

But instead, for example as an author, you're told to keep writing one book after another, to chase trends, to have the same structure as every other book out there, to imitate competition in other aspects, to build a community, to sell yourself on social media, to sell additional products because books don't sell, etc.

You're no longer actually writing as a creative endeavor. Instead, you're just doing a desk job that really isn't that different from what, say, a plumber does. Instead of being truly creative, you're just another producer doing the same stuff over and over again like other people.

Perhaps I'm sounding too much like a disgruntled artist here who can't respect the needs of the market but I think that if you want to be creative, you look at entrepreneurship from a different perspective.
 

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