How Much Control is Too Much Control?

This is a group of questions.

1) How much control does a person like when they have their book being published, marketed, pricing, etc????? What is the breaking point?  Or better question, what would the magic number be or what would be involved to make it go from Independent to one of the big 6?  My own answer to that question is up in the air, but honestly it brings about a lot of questions in general. When I first started writing forever ago, for my own pleasure, it was the days of Publishers and agents.  Without them you were useless and were basically told to do so.  Traditionalists still hold true to that for many different reasons, the most hateful one I ever hear was that it meant a person “made it” and that “they don’t matter until they make it”.  Ouch.  Then the nicest thing I heard that made it compelling, “They made it where I could focus on my writing, the one thing I love.”  See both sides?  Of course that was when marketing was done a lot better by the companies.  I’d give up a tad bit of money IF I were to be given all the freedoms to write and be able to break the contract if they didn’t uphold the bargain of helping get the book/series in front of everyone.  That’s mine maybe. Not sure yet.  I love the Indie scene no matter how poor I end up.

2) Personal life question (I can surprise you every now and then) – How much control should a person have over another person?  Married, not married, children, no children, anything of the sort.  I have seen this so many times I can’t help but shake my head at it and it seems quite prevalent with women against men in regard to children (although I know someone who has such a terrible ex that he does the same thing), and with men against women with aggression.  Then you have ALLLLLLL the blended families out there with so many different situations.  So many unanswered questions.  Married, not married, gender related….take your pick.  In all honesty I think I am probably one of the few that gets the option of doing what I love, go where I want, who I can spend time with, all of those things.  It makes for a happy J.S. We like to have no Hulk Smash. Oh and don’t forget my trusty sidekick with pitchforks (who seems to make cupcakes for everyone but me 😉 )

3) For those who listened to my radio interview or any interview, what have you learned about me that may have surprised you?  Or any questions you would like to ask?

4) on a whole totally different topic.  If you were given a million dollars what would you do with it?????? 

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11 Comments

  1. 1. Not sure what the magic number would be, but I’d definitely want to get some help with the marketing. If they did that then I could understand them making so much money off of me. Have royalty rates gone up as the author takes on more responsibilities? Also, I’d want to keep my current cover artist.

    2. Not sure I understand this question. There’s always some influence that a loved one has over you. It should be an equal amount of influence though.

    3. I’m sorry that I missed it.

    4. I’d keep doing what I’m doing now, but with a lot less worrying about bills. Writing would be the career without any questions and nagging.

    Reply
    • the 2nd was slightly other people’s thoughts on actual control over a person. I’m curious if I’m seeing things from the wrong angle.

      Reply
  2. #1) I’ve trad published, long ago. Poor royalties, jokish and lame 3-city book tours, little if any promotion, I didn’t even recognize my stories once they were published, my readers didn’t get to read the books I’d intended for them to read. That’s why I now own my own publishing company (my books only), and I prefer to be in full control of all aspects of my career. I am fully accountable for all successes and failures that come my way.

    #2) Not sure I understand the question, but my answer is that I am a free spirit. No person or organization controls me, nor will they ever. Allowing oneself to be controlled by another is a sign of a weak, confused mind and a struggling soul. Likewise, I don’t believe in controlling anyone, either. To each their own, rewards and consequences alike. I control me, you control you, and so on….

    #3) I was very glad you were given lots of time to discuss and promote your book! I listened to every word of it. Surprises? I was surprised by your voice. You’d once told me you were born in England, so I expected a British accent–which you didn’t end up having!

    #4) A million dollars? I’d probably stick it in the bank and keep it for a rainy day. These days, a million dollars isn’t a lot of money at all. It will get a modest house in a middle-class suburb, a late-model SUV, a couple months worth of groceries (health food), one doctor’s visit, one vacation to California, and that’s about it. All gone. I certainly wouldn’t quit my day job.

    Reply
    • yes I am british by birth, many years, but i moved around in the military and assimilate languages quite easily. I did have a true UK accent until I was 7 and it comes and goes, especially when I’m slightly upset. lol. When I am with too many southerners I feel like I sound way too much like them which frustrates me to no end, almost the exact opposite of what I think I should sound like.

      Reply
  3. I think the ideals of modern publishing are changing. Whereas many of the authors before used to deal with total control from the publishers, many now have a say in how their book is marketed, for the better or the worse. It is a lot of work, no? If I had to pick a perfect situation, I would agree with Charles. The publisher would market their bums off for me and I would get to choose how my cover looks and what type of promo schedule I could live with.

    Family is as family does. People make their own choices and tend to blame others when things don’t go according to plan, but when it comes down to it, each choice we make results in a situation later. I have given up having control of personal aspects in many regards. If I didn’t, I would be crazier than I already am.
    I reserved the best cupcakes for you. I also have chocolate cake and cheesecake, I hide the good stuff in the mini fridge behind the pitchforks.
    If I had a million dollars I would currently move to a cabin in the middle of the woods and get away from Wi-Fi connections and emails and I would send you smoke signals to let you know when the cupcakes are done.

    Reply
  4. Reblogged this on J.S. Riddle and commented:

    Because it seems to be brought up again. CONTROLLING, BLACKMAILING, THREATING, AND FIGHTING NEVER GET YOU ANYTHING BUT SQUISH THE PERSON FOR YOUR OWN PERSONAL GAIN. #2 IS THE MOST IMPORTANT

    Reply
  5. I think the rapid changes in electronic technologies are shifting the sands for traditional and indie authors alike. I sometimes wonder if computers, internet and technology is comhow making our lives more, not less, complicated. The entrepreneur minded will be the most successful in the long run. As to control issues, I quit having those when my kids turned into adults. When that happened, I learned quickly that people are entitled to live their own lives, whatever their consequences. Do you find time or make time to write? i am struggling with that right now. if I had a million dollars, everyone who reads would have a copy of my book. I feel the story is that important. I would also be glad that my husband might be able to retire, but we have been there before and surprisingly, a million or even two, doesn’t go as far or last as long as one might think.

    Reply
    • Internet and tech does make things easier till it passes you by I agree. Catching up to it and jumping up and down screaming you exist in the marketing world? Thats the tough one. Especially since it was never a specialty to begin with.
      I’m glad you learned about letting things go with control. How would you feel if a person had control over you and not much you could do about it? What if it was kind of “if you don’t do this/or do this then I won’t let you do xxxx” and the xxxxx is the most important things in their lives?
      I agree on the million dollars!!! I could hire an editor, marketer, publicist, so I can actually do what i love and write and make sure everyone loved it as much as I put all my heart and soul into it.

      Reply
      • That sort of control is emotional abuse. It smacks of threat and blackmail. I would say, “Fine, hit the road!” I have learned the hard way that it is easier to let go of the misery than to hold onto the pain. Sometimes the greatest gift you can give someone is the freedom to pursue their own happiness.

      • what if you were a man, trapped because he hardly has rights?

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