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Thread: Bookblaster / Scriptblaster

  1. #1
    falconking
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    Wink Bookblaster / Scriptblaster

    Hello All...

    I reacently came across this company:
    http://scriptblaster.com/

    They claim they have helped a lot of writers to get their manuscripts and screenplays optioned or sold using their query system.

    has anyone had any experience with this guys?. If they are for real, I may decide to give them a try.

    Thanks.

  2. #2
    Writer Beware Goddess Absolute Sage victoriastrauss's Avatar
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    There is a word for what ScriptBlaster does...

    SPAM.

    Firing off mass e-mails to a probably randomly aggregated list of addresses is not the way to sell your script.

    Notice how the testimonials on the site omit any details--such as which agent or production company picked up the script. Testimonials that can't be verified are worthless.

    Save your money.

    - Victoria

  3. #3
    Refrigerate After Opening kbax's Avatar
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    Bookblaster Query Service

    Well, I've been lurking for quite a while, but I thought this worthy of a de-lurk. I advise everyone to take a look at miss snark's post about that Bookblaster service, which appears to be very new. I haven't looked into it, but from what I hear, they throw spaghetti at the wall for a "small fee" (they query a gazillion agents for you for "only $100"). Well, someone did some research, and one of their testimonials is from an author who used bookblaster and got his book pub'd by none other than...PublishAmerica. Go to the link for more details, and have a great day!

    -Kbax

  4. #4
    Writer Beware Goddess Absolute Sage victoriastrauss's Avatar
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    Writer Beware recently blogged about Bookblaster.

    - Victoria

  5. #5
    Hagiographically Advantaged AW Moderator HapiSofi's Avatar
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    Hey, Victoria, love the weblog. The title's unwieldy, though. Why not call it Writer Beware -- an established name brand -- and put all that other stuff in the subtitle?

    Onward.

    Bookblaster's plan to indiscriminately spam the publishing industry is not a solution to anyone's problems. No matter what kind of material you're writing, there aren't 350-500 agents and publishers for whom it's suitable.

    Even if you assume the recipients are initially going to be opening and reading this spam, which ain't likely, the people on Bookblaster's address list are going to be getting query after query about types of writing they don't represent or publish. That's a huge waste of their time. They aren't going to keep reading them.

    So what if one in a hundred happen to be suitable? No way is it worth an editor's time to read ninety-nine pieces of spam, when the most they could gain from it is a query letter. If they take queries, they've already got as many of them as they could possibly want, arriving each day in the mail.

    Have I mentioned that I passionately hate spam? Reading time is an agent's or editor's most basic resource. I don't usually hold it against newbie authors that they've fallen into the hands of scammers; but if they help fill my mailbox with spam, I'll be hard put to forgive them.
    Winner of the Best Drycleaner on the Block Award.

  6. #6
    Your Genial Uncle Absolute Sage James D. Macdonald's Avatar
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    On the one hand, those spam-queries will apparently come from multiple email addresses -- Bookblaster is going to use the authors' return address.

    On the other hand, Bayesian spam filters like Popfile should quickly figure out the common features of Bookblaster's spam so it can easily be shunted to the Ignore file, leaving only genuine queries behind.

  7. #7
    practical experience, FTW
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    Bookblaster

    Wish I were as sanguine as Mr MacDonald about being able to filter out the Bookblaster nonsense. As I understand it, they take the author's original query and spam it out to everyone in sight under the author's e-mail, so there may be a shortage of common elements to filter

    I confess that it was me who rattled Miss Snark's cage about Bookblaster, and she responded with the kind of snarl we've come to love.

    But what Crispin and Strauss pointed out over on their blog is something I don;t think had occurred to anyone before: The agents and publishers most likely to respond to this tactic are the scammers. Thus in the long run it may be more of a trap for writers than anything else.

  8. #8
    Hagiographically Advantaged AW Moderator HapiSofi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by James D. Macdonald
    On the one hand, those spam-queries will apparently come from multiple email addresses -- Bookblaster is going to use the authors' return address.
    If Bookblaster reformats the queries, they're going to be recognizable. If they don't, then they're just a remailing service plus an address list: hardly a sophisticated marketing tool, definitely not worth the price.
    Winner of the Best Drycleaner on the Block Award.

  9. #9
    Writer Beware Goddess Absolute Sage victoriastrauss's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HapiSofi
    Hey, Victoria, love the weblog. The title's unwieldy, though. Why not call it Writer Beware -- an established name brand -- and put all that other stuff in the subtitle?
    You aren't the first to make this suggestion! That long silly title was kind of a joke--we were trying and trying and couldn't decide on a clever name for the blog, so Ann just put it up one day in frustration and neither of us has gotten around to changing it. We'll probably wind up going with "Writer Beware" or "Writer Beware's Blog" or something similarly unimaginative--but as you say, it's a name brand.

    - Victoria

  10. #10
    smart enough to know better
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    Cool Bookblaster Query Service

    Victoria

    I swear we've had some queries come over the Internet that came from "services" like Bookblaster. I also think they do some rewriting, because some of the queries read very well. Sometimes a really great looking query and/or synopsis comes in and I'll send for a partial. The writing turns out to be terrible, and I know the author didn't write the query or the synopsis. Perhaps the contacts are coming from a writing service other than Bookblaster, but someone out there is making a bundle writing queries and synopses for authors who can't do them.

    I disagree with you, though, about email queries. Parkeast had to use them at first, because we couldn't get a PO Box anywhere in town. I ordered a king-sized mailbox to accomodate the extra mail. By the time it was delivered (three months), I was spoiled to the convenience of email queries. That's all I take. It's a tremendous time saver and a Godsend, now that we're so busy.

    Also, in talking to some other legit agents, I find that many of them are now taking email queries.

    dp

  11. #11
    Writer Beware Goddess Absolute Sage victoriastrauss's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Donna Pudick
    I swear we've had some queries come over the Internet that came from "services" like Bookblaster. I also think they do some rewriting, because some of the queries read very well. Sometimes a really great looking query and/or synopsis comes in and I'll send for a partial. The writing turns out to be terrible, and I know the author didn't write the query or the synopsis. Perhaps the contacts are coming from a writing service other than Bookblaster, but someone out there is making a bundle writing queries and synopses for authors who can't do them.
    Yeah, there are some services like this--Writers Relief is one. They are perfectly straightforward services that charge a not-too-unreasonable fee and do exactly what they promise with a reasonable amount of professionalism. They don't do anything that writers can't do for themselves, of course. And I didn't think of the point that you mention--that they might write a much better query than the book in question merits.
    Also, in talking to some other legit agents, I find that many of them are now taking email queries.
    Yes, but it's my impression that they're still in the minority. Anyway, sending an email query to an agent who doesn't want one is just a waste of pixels. I often get letters from writers who are incensed that so-and-so didn't even respond to their query, and on further elaboration it turns out that they sent an equery to an agent who specifically stated that they didn't want equeries. The attitude of writers like this tends to be "Even if they don't want equeries, they OUGHT to." Or else they've heard the story about the writer who flouted all the agent's guidelines but got representation anyway.

    - Victoria

  12. #12
    smart enough to know better
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    Cool Bookblaster Query Service

    As for e-queries vs snail mail queries: We are starting to get a few mail queries, now that some would-be writers are passing our mailing address around. If the writer includes an email address, I answer the query that way. If I can't do that I must write back.

    I hate having to write back, stuff an envelope, stamp it, and traipse out to the big box. I'm really spoiled to the convenience of e-queries. I can acknowledge the receipt of the query immediately, read it, and either send for a partial immediately or reject the query and be done with it. The author, too, can move on without waiting for a snail mail answer. Authors who don't require partials back get either a request for a full or a rejection quickly, too, saving them a lot of time.

    And this is from a computer hater who resisted going on the internet until 05!

    As to following guidelines, I say to those rebels out there who feel they don't have to follow them: Don't flatter yourself.

    dp

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