Friday, October 07, 2005

Beware the Bookner Blog

My recent foray into the publishing blogworld has netted some very informative and colorful catches. Let’s look at some of my favorite and not so favorite picks.

Honest Critiques– Torgo is an editor from the United Kingdom, who will give you, for free, an honest critique of a sampling of your work. He recently critiqued a synopsis and an excerpt for me. I think he is fabulous! He was right on, in what he showed me about my work from an editor’s point of view. (Be warned though, if you submit something, it may take a while to get a reply. He’s in great demand!)

Then we have Agent 007. She is an agent and ex-editor who gives a full view of the publishing world from a softer point of view. I’ve learned a lot about the industry from her posts.

Then we have the irascible Miss Snark. I’ve left her until the last of my favorite picks, not because she’s on the bottom (she’s actually my personal favorite), but I must warn you...she’s not for the faint of more genteel readers might like Agent 007 better.) Miss Snark is an agent, extremely knowledgeable and gives you info from an agents perspective (albeit sometimes very colorfully) the reason I put her down here is because of my last entry.

Bookner – this folks, at this point in time is my least favorite. I make this known because I received an e-mail about this site, long before he showed up on Miss Snark’s site (I’ll get to that in a minute).

To my blogger friends that aspire to be published writers...beware....beware of wolves in sheep’s clothing. Sometimes we as writers want to be published so bad that the brain gets disconnected from the rest of the body and we fall victim to the first thing that comes along and gives you hope of being published.

I’m not accusing Jason Gonzales aka. Bookner of being a fraud or anything, because I don’t know him...yet. But let’s take a look at some facts:

1)He’s an engineer who wants to start a critique service. ( least be a writer...being a published writer would give you credibility.)
2)He wants you to send your WHOLE manuscript in for a critique. (Well, I’ll just fire off my blood, sweat, and tears for the last year into cyberspace to someone who has an official looking website...PS...I’m no partial to orange.)
3)The critique system is going to be done by people who will remain anonymous. (Whoopee!! What a crapshoot) It could be an actual writer, editor or agent...or some uninformed person that can’t punctuate a sentence.

Now, let’s look at the man (this is where Miss Snark comes in.)

Miss Snark, as a responsible agent warned her readership in a manner similar to the way I just put it (although she’s way more colorful). This man, Jason comes to her site, to debate her readership, as to his good qualities. Now, since he doesn’t like the comments that he gets from Miss Snark's readers; on his own site, he disables the comments, so that no one can post. But he continues to pop into Miss Snark’s site, like Zorro, leave snide remarks and vanish.

In frustration over his pompous and arrogant stance, one young woman has created an Anti-Bookner site.

Here comes the best part....Me...I...Bonnie Calhoun, after being a commenting party, have been thrust into the foray. Today I received an e-mail from one of Jason’s friends. (I must tell you.....whenever someone tells me not to say something; my first thought is....what are you trying to hide? I was going to give you his e-mail and name and website, but I'm going to say this one time for free....When you tell me to keep it to myself...I'm going to share it with the world. That's your one chance Nate!

I will share with you what I wrote him back:

Dear Nate,

I can sympathize with your plight, especially if it's one of friendship, but Jason has set himself up for this. He comes to Miss Snark's site, zips in and then zips out, leaving his comments but allowing no one the opportunity to debate him.

On his own site, he disable the comments, because as the new guy, he couldn't stand the heat. Hey babe', if you can't stand the heat, stay out of the kitchen! If he thinks that some new kid, with a new idea is just going to walk into a venerated institution like publishing and not only be readily accepted but revolutionize the industry, he better think twice. It ain't gonna' happen. And with his present attitude he's not winning friend or influencing people.

Go over to Agent007's site: Read what she has to say about what it takes to excel INSIDE the publishing world. Your friend doesn't even have his foot inside the door and already he's making enemys. But the best and most immature part it: He doesn't even know with whom he's making enemies. Miss Snark is definitely an agent. Which agent? How powerful is she? Who does she know? Obviously she's been part of the industry for a long time, and I wouldn't give a penny for Jason's chance of getting a proposal past anyone she knows. I'm sure Jason has become famous in the publishing world....infamous! One of the EDITORS, I've been talking to, is from England. He reads Miss Snark's site. Congratulations...Jason is infamous in the UK to!

Until he sucks it up, allows honest debate and criticism on his own site with others (the best part is, he also doesn't know how many others that visit Miss Snark's site are agents or editors or even publishers). I'm sure she knows a lot of the people posting there, personally, many have made reference to that fact.

And let's not even talk about his method. I got the head's up on his site, long before I saw it on Miss Snark's. I ash-canned the link after visiting because everything is done in secret. AND he wants me to send him my WHOLE manuscript.....Not in this lifetime! Secret means, some venerated author or editor could be reading it, OR the drunk that I pass on the corner near the jail every morning could be reading it. (I say that because one morning he was trying to sell a laptop for booze). Or Jason could be an acronym for some Filipino theft group, phishing the internet for viable manuscripts. Who knows! Nate, you know, and that's fine, but don't expect a free ticket from the rest of the world.

AND, last but not least: Those of us frequenting Miss Snark's site like her and respect her opinion! I am a born again Christian and sometimes her language turns the air in my library blue (especially because I'd like to say the same thing, but don't dare) But she's teaching me a whole lot and she allows us to pick her brains about the thought process in an industry that is one of the biggest Ol' boy or Ol' girl networks in the world! That's invaluable to me and I will defend her until the cow's come home. Jason is going to HER house dissin' HER, but won't allow anyone to come to HIS house and dis him.

This feud will go on forever, at least past my getting published. I am a new novelist, not a stupid novelist. I'll take my time, my work can speak for itself, and when the Lord wants me to have a publisher or agent....I'll get one...and who may even be in the secular world, but I know one thing....I won't be giving Jason a chance to be that person. He's not mature or knowledgeable about the industry enough to be of any help to me.

You might learn something if you start visiting Miss Snark on a regular basis. She gives away what she knows readily!

Sincerely your,
Bonnie Calhoun


  1. M. C. Pearson said...
    Woaho-ho! You're on a roll Bonnie-o! Yikes, don't ever get on your bad side...but, hey...I love being on your good side! Hear ye, hear ye...Mrs. Bonnie has something to say!!!

    I wouldn't have put a link to the goober-guy bookner's site though!
    Bonnie S. Calhoun said...
    We must show all sides, my fairie dear. We play fair!
    Bernita said...
    You go, Girl!
    Bonnie, I admire you.
    You're much more kind to the guy than I would be.
    Bookner is pure demagoguery.
    Elektra said...
    This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
    Elektra said...
    This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
    Elektra said...
    Wow...I wish YOU had been in charge of AntiBookner. You're much cooler under fire than I could ever be .

    I'm starting to wonder if Mr. Gonzales doesn't only know how to program in orange. Or maybe he's color blind?
    Shelley L. MacKenzie said...
    Thanks for posting those links. I'm going to have to check them out as I'm sure it could help me with my writing too.

    And, I agree that it's good to play fair...let everyone form their opinions by seeing both sides of the story. Good job!
    M. C. Pearson said...
    You are way, way too nice Bonn Bonn! That is probably why I love you so much!
    Stephen Newton said...
    Thanks for stopping by and commenting. I've been watching the earthquake reports this morning also. With all the disasters hitting within days of each other it certainly seems like the End Days and perfect timing for you book.

    I admire your persistence and effort as a writer. I think writing is both the most rewarding, but hardest work I've ever done.
    Elektra said...
    I just read your comments on Honest Critiques (still love the story idea, btw. It almost sounds like Dante's Peak with God). But why on Earth do you think Caesar was evil? Pompous, yes, and his commentaries on Gaul were long enough to merit any homicide, but why evil?
    M. C. Pearson said...
    Hmmm~ your right margin of the post box overlaps into your profile box. Other than that it looks great Bon Bon!
    Bonnie S. Calhoun said...
    I know, I'm working on it I have to resize one more picture, but Blogger is blogging-up!
    M. C. Pearson said...
    I hate it when that happens!
    M. C. Pearson said...
    Okay, it looks awesome now! Yah! You go you blogger queen you!

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