News Litopia News Update / March

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AgentPete

Capo Famiglia
Guardian
Full Member
Joined
May 19, 2014
Location
London UK
Pop-Up Submissions recommence this Sunday (11th March). The new year’s backlog is almost cleared now, meaning that we’ll be reopening submissions very soon. Litopians will be the first to know and will have priority, so watch out for a notification here.

Pop-Ups have been so successful that I’m making them a regular and recurring event: every Sunday at 6pm UK time, unless we’re organizing a special event or seminar (see below).

The really big news, though, is that I will be inviting certain “big name” publishers to sit alongside me as we evaluate submissions. I’ve had a gratifyingly positive response from the publishing trade on this: publishers obviously feel we’re doing something important and want to be part of it. More news on this soon.

This year is the year you find your writing voice – I’ve dedicated all our seminars to this all-important but mostly misunderstood or neglected topic. The next seminar in the series will take place on Sunday 18thMarch (so no Pop-Ups that day) and will be entitled EXPLORING YOUR VOICE. It’s the second in the series (the first is still available here). More details soon.
 
Pop-Up Submissions recommence this Sunday (11th March). The new year’s backlog is almost cleared now, meaning that we’ll be reopening submissions very soon. Litopians will be the first to know and will have priority, so watch out for a notification here.

Pop-Ups have been so successful that I’m making them a regular and recurring event: every Sunday at 6pm UK time, unless we’re organizing a special event or seminar (see below).

The really big news, though, is that I will be inviting certain “big name” publishers to sit alongside me as we evaluate submissions. I’ve had a gratifyingly positive response from the publishing trade on this: publishers obviously feel we’re doing something important and want to be part of it. More news on this soon.

This year is the year you find your writing voice – I’ve dedicated all our seminars to this all-important but mostly misunderstood or neglected topic. The next seminar in the series will take place on Sunday 18thMarch (so no Pop-Ups that day) and will be entitled EXPLORING YOUR VOICE. It’s the second in the series (the first is still available here). More details soon.
Great idea about inviting a publisher as a 'guest popper-upper'. It'll give us a useful insight into how things work from their POV.
 
My pleasure :) We're doing something quite unique here inside Litopia, it's exciting.

What I'm thinking about is extending the period for which Pop-Ups can be viewed. I'm wondering about three months, particularly if we have a guest publisher on the show... I think it could be very useful to members to get a "fix" on them. Any thoughts welcome.
 
@AgentPete - Will viewability be available for three months to us or the public? Personally and honestly I feel it should only be available for 3 months for members because I want writers to join for their writing not to get a shortcut to a publishing deal which could now happen during POP-UPS due to your special guests. I see it now with POP-UPS people join Litopia because of POP-UPS. Their work is read and you never hear from them again on here. To me that is not fair it defies the meaning of Litopia. You are here to create, write, learn and become a braver, better writer. I’m sorry but I’m a very honest person. It took @AgentPete a whole month to convince me to join Litopia, then I submitted my work it’s been looked at since with very positive and promising feedback. Thank you Pete for that and now I try my darnest to attend all POP-UPS regardless if my work is being looked at or not.
One - The chat room is very entertaining.
Second - There are some very interesting, friendly people here who all share one common goal to become better writers and support each other in doing so.
Three - You see how a Agent @AgentPete on the front line reviews manuscripts of all genres and it helps that @AgentPete is a very nice, down to earth guy who is comical at times and someone you can have a giggle with. There is no obvious line between the Agent and Writer as seen and felt in traditional submissions.
I think allowing the public access to POP-UPS for three months via Facebook is unreasonable.
 
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I'm assuming the videos will be on Litopia, not FB, meaning only Colonists who have signed up can have access for the 3 months? Not sure about 3 months. I suspect that anyone who is truly bothered about their feedback will deal with it straight away, and watch the Pop-ups speedily. Therefore, I'm not sure if 3 months is actually necessary? 1 month?

Stick them into the Back Room, for members only?

Also, @AgentPete, do the videos clog up the server? (I'm not a techie person). But that might be worth considering too. With 4 pop ups a month, there potentially could be several videos on here at any given time if they're kept for 3 mths. (12?? I can't do the maths right now. Too early for such matters.) Would this affect the workings of the site?
 
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@Barbara @AgentPete I totally agree with B here 1 month and in the back room only after the live session and only for new members who have been here, active and involved such as posting etc. For a week or so at least. @AgentPete I have mentioned the idea of a live Q and A for the public I have no issue with that and the live POP-UPS every Sunday. But the whole granting access to non-members/public to submissions for 3 months. I don’t. Now I think of it submissions should be in a different, private section on Litopia altogether.
 
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What I'm thinking about is extending the period for which Pop-Ups can be viewed. I'm wondering about three months, particularly if we have a guest publisher on the show... I think it could be very useful to members to get a "fix" on them. Any thoughts welcome.

I think making them available for an extended period of time is a fabulous idea, @AgentPete! :) I'm not terribly worried about people joining and then viewing the videos without ever posting here, because we have people now who join, post a bit, and then never return. We have members join who never post at all. We also have people who submit to Pop-Up Submissions but never join the Colony. I wish none of those scenarios occurred, but that's human nature. I'm thinking more along the lines of giving members an extended length of time to view the videos, or even to view them more than once, because there is so much to learn from each one. It's difficult to grasp it all in one sitting. :)
 
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@Carol Rose I agree for members and, yes there is so much too learn from fellow writers. Maybe submissions should only be exclusive to members of Litopia that would stop the occurrence of the scenarios you have mentioned. Membership then your granted to submit to Pete. That way they can see what Litopia has to offer too. Is that too wishful of me?
 
Live on FB, I feel they should be available to view by anyone but only for a very limited time. One person, not a member of Litopia, subbed and then posted abusive comments afterwards on the FB comments section. Nice of them :/
There is a lot of time and work invested by Peter in the Pop Ups. It could be valuable to have them available inside Litopia for longer.
 
Live on FB, I feel they should be available to view by anyone but only for a very limited time. One person, not a member of Litopia, subbed and then posted abusive comments afterwards on the FB comments section. Nice of them :/
There is a lot of time and work invested by Peter in the Pop Ups. It could be valuable to have them available inside Litopia for longer.

Well that sucks. Guess I missed that one. Only takes one bad apple, eh? But that doesn't seem to be the norm, so we likely don't want that person in here anyway. :p He/she wouldn't get much out of being a member here if they can't handle honest feedback on their work from a professional!
 
@Carol Rose I agree for members and, yes there is so much too learn from fellow writers. Maybe submissions should only be exclusive to members of Litopia that would stop the occurrence of the scenarios you have mentioned. Membership then your granted to submit to Pete. That way they can see what Litopia has to offer too. Is that too wishful of me?

I was talking mostly about scenarios that occurred well before Pop-Up Submissions began, but some have been recent. Guess it's up to @AgentPete whether he wants to close submissions to Litopia members only, but wouldn't that defeat the whole purpose of being open with the submission process?
 
I'm another vote for longer on Litopia but not for the general public and think 3 months is a long time, but don't feel strongly about it. I learn a lot watching and listening to these programs.

Opening or closing submissions is a complicated question, and there will always be people who try to game whatever system is in place. . @AgentPete what is your goal for the pop-ups?
 
Here's my cynical take on the videos and the length of time they are available on Facebook and Litopia as well as whether they're in a private or public section and how long they're available in any of those sections.

To me, it's very simple. Any expectation I might have had in regards to privacy and keeping my writing under wraps is no longer viable once I submit to something which broadcasts live on Facebook.

As far as I know, the Pop-Ups have always been available on Facebook for 24 hours. That video can be downloaded and saved fairly easily. I have the one where my submission was discussed. I saved it on my hard drive. I don't have any nefarious intentions. I only wanted to be able to keep mine and honestly the only reason I don't edit the video to only include the section which applies to me is because I'm lazy.

The videos broadcast on Facebook can also be recorded live. To be specific, anyone with Quick Time on their computer can make their own recording. Two hours is quite memory intensive and the whole thing is likely to go awry but perhaps not so much for someone with a better system than mine.

Having gone into all of that, I have to ask myself, and anyone else still listening... Why would the length of time a video is online be of concern to me?

Am I...

Afraid someone might take my idea of my writing?

I don't think ideas can be stolen because there aren't any original ideas. I suppose writing is sometimes stolen. I don't see the point but I suppose someone can steal another's writing. But I have a difficult time seeing how that would work. If you steal someone's writing, how satisfying is it getting credit for something you didn't do? If you steal someone's writing, how difficult would it be for you to prove they didn't write it? It doesn't hold up for me.

There's a movie about stealing an author's writing called The Words with Bradlee Cooper. The movie barely holds up. Ironically there have been accusations of the plot being stolen from a German novel/movie called Lila Lila. Isn't that funny? I wonder if the situation is more interesting in German?

However, if this is a real fear then submitting your work to a broadcasted event might not be the way to go. It's already too late to keep your writing private by the time it appears on Facebook. The Pop-Ups can be recorded live. I can't stress this enough and I'm not doing it to be mean, or even critical of the Pop-Ups. I'm saying it because it's true.

Afraid I might be embarrassed by what is said?

This is one I understand a little better because there is a sense of exposure and vulnerability when someone looks at your writing. I remember not knowing if I should say something and wondering if I was supposed to say something and opting to not say anything while my work was commented on. I swing pretty quickly between embarrassment and arrogance where my writing is concerned. I can see how the very existence of the video lingering on Facebook and sitting out there for the entire internet world to see could get to me--maybe more as time went on rather than at first. There are times when I'm mortified over something I've written and there are times when I'm in love with the entire process. I'm starting to believe, this might be how it is loving and hating parts of it at the same time.

But to me at least, the reality that I've already let the cat out of the bag trumps all of the above feelings. I think the way to get the most out of opportunities like the Pop-Ups is to be willing to be embarrassed, willing to be criticized, willing to be uncomfortable, and willing to accept what others say about my writing.

And .... after all of that the truth is ... it doesn't matter much to me whether it's three months or one month or one week ... or private or facebook ....because ... the video can be downloaded and recorded and .... I don't see exactly what we're trying to prevent by opting for caution.

ALSO -- Agent Pete is very careful about what he says and how he says it from my observation. He seems mindful of the feelings of all involved.
 
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@Amber, I'm going to assume you're talking about plagiarizing unpublished work, not published, because the latter is very easy to prove the person stealing it did not originally write it.

Even so, people who are out to make a quick buck by pretending to have written something they did not aren't usually trolling Facebook, looking for live video feeds that feature the first ten pages of unpublished work. So on that note, I agree with you. We need not fear having our work stolen when submitting to Pop-Up Submissions. :) Even if someone were able to copy and paste the few pages shown during the broadcast, anything they write out of it would end up vastly different from what we've written. They don't have the synopsis because @AgentPete does not show or read those, and they don't have the context.

I also agree with you in terms of putting it all out there when you do submit. It's meant to be a learning experience. If someone can't accept the feedback they're receiving from a successful agent like Peter, they may never get their work past any agent, and will certainly not be able to handle reviewers' comments if they decide to self-publish the story.
 
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I wouldn't see plagiarism as a risk either.

Writers receiving highly positive feedback won't worry so much, perhaps, as those who maybe feel a bit bruised afterwards. They have received a public vote of confidence, and it might help them with their search for an agent or publisher, mightn't it. Peter is kind but doesn't always pull his punches either. He is telling it how he sees it, and I can understand the occasional 'ouch' at the other end. Those who don't come off so well in terms of feedback, like the chappie who left those comments, are more exposed than someone getting a private rejection. That one got the feedback for free, never been here, knew the risks, then blew his cover with the comments, aiming a kick on the way out. I am not sympathizing. He got something totally for free, just because he didn't like it.

That kind of thing could be got round with some kind of basic permission system at submission stage, T and C's spelled out, they sign up. And Peter already deploys editing, so that someone who doesn't want their feedback left up longer could opt out.
 
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