Myth: “It’s just fiction”

No, its not just fiction. The art is NOT separate from the artist. Every writer, everywhere, is responsible for what they put out into the world. As a reader, you should imagine what the author who wrote this book is like and why they wrote it.

I decided to take a chance and be a good community member on JukePop and read from my fellow authors. One of the JukePop 30 authors, B.B. Edmunds, has a serial there called Deathless. Within the first 500 words of this story, the main character is pilfering corpses and standing over a dead, raped woman while essentially saying, “I would’ve raped her, too, but been nicer about it”. The first chapter is over 8000 words long. Why would I want to read this? To add to this already mountainous-in-quality bullshit, Edmunds responds to my comment by saying he defends this character. I was really shaken and admittedly annoyed by Edmunds’ defensiveness and his desire to have the last word until I stated my point and opted not to respond to him anymore. Then he gets his feelings hurts and continues to argue with me about my position on Deathless. B.B. Edmunds didn’t get the takeaway, which is

  1. You are responsible for what you justify and what you write
  2. Readers will drop your book because your main character sucks
  3. Everything you write says something about you
  4. Yes, your book will be judged by the first 500 words, that’s all it takes sometimes.
  5. In getting criticized, don’t keep arguing with your reader.

I learned about JukePop through National Novel Writing Month. I’ve always found JukePop’s use of “reader analytics” and votes to be suspicious at best. Which is why I had hesitated to publish anything there since The Taker a few years ago. Its not my style, I just find parts of the platform to be helpful. But if this is what it means to be a JukePop 30 author, I can live without it.

I really feel that I need to be honest: What I’ve found in my quest for good serials on this website is that a lot of authors have great ideas but not enough skill, experience, or style to carry the great ideas. I’ve come across typos and perspective issues, for example; I’m not an editor or a proofreader and even I can see them.

Writers like Edmunds have skill and style but are writing stories I don’t want to read (because of their unnecessarily violent, trendy, or pretentiously gritty elements). I really hope this is not all there is to JukePop. More reading investigation is required.

It would be nice to surrounded by writers and readers who are aware of what they’re doing and supporting.

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I’m in the Top 25 Authors of the Jukepop and 1888 Summer Writing Project!

I entered my serialized and ongoing novella Oracle in the 2016 Summer Writing Project on JukePop with only the intention of publishing something for my birthday. I’m surprised and proud to announce that I ended up getting selected as one of the Top 25 Authors. On August 1st, one author will be picked for publishing with professional cover art by Irvin Rodriguez.

This is my podcast interview with Dean Moses about Oracle and my month-long writing experience. I don’t care how much public speaking I’ve done, I still get rattled and nervous every single time I do things like this! But Dean, one of three winners of the last year’s Summer Writing Project, was really nice and I got through to the other side of the interview, probably because he was so kind and cool about it. I  was so nervous and yet I get so excited when I’m talking to other writers! Feel free to listen to the podcasts from the other Top 25 as well, I know I will be!

Speaking of winners from last year, there are three of them. This year, they’re only picking ONE. I won’t lie, I want to win. I feel the pressure. Three issues that I foresee:

  1. My novella isn’t a novella anymore. I wrote 22 out of 30 days last month. Each chapter is 800 to about 2000 words. My book way over 35,000-40,000 words now. The rules use the word novella constantly. Even I did get the right reader analytics according to JukePop,, that might count against me.
  2. Outreach, marketability–I don’t know how any of those things will turn out for me.
  3. Most importantly, I have made a commitment to staying true to the integrity, heart, and pacing of Oracle. I’ll hate myself if I betray that for a competition. My desire, underneath it is all, and the right thing to do is keep writing until the end.

When I started writing and talking about Oracle nearly two weeks before my birthday, I vaguely imagined how nice it would be to be picked as one of the Top 25 Authors but I didn’t expect any recognition. Even if I don’t come out as the author that receives this wonderful opportunity from 1888, I got so much more out of entering the Summer Writing Project than I imagined and I’m writing a story that I love.

Please follow and read Oracle on JukePop. Enjoy. Vote. Tell me what you think!