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[Writers' Forum] Backspace / Backspace Writers' Conference

editing_for_authors
Editing for authors: because every writer needs a good editor.

Trapped in amber

This site looks really good, and has lots of interesting things on the free homepage, but it costs $30 a year to subscribe to the forums. I've never come across that before. I'm quite interested in joining, so I was wondering if anyone here knew if they were legit.?
They do have a five day free trial, but there was a PayPal thing to fill in first and I wanted to check if there's anything wrong with this.

Thanks

Amber

www.bksp.org/index.shtm
 

aka eraser

Re: Backspace?

That site was founded by a few break-away members of Writers Net. It's legit but somewhat controversial. If you go to www.writers.net/forum/ and click on the Published Writers board, then the "Discussion for established writers" thread, you'll see what I mean.
 

Trapped in amber

Re: Backspace?

Thanks aka eraser, I read the thread (and looked at a few others) and think I got most of what was happening. It was a little strange, but it does look like they're on the up and up.
 

CaoPaux

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Backspace.org

Still an active community.
 

dragonjax

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I'm an active member of Backspace. If anyone has any questions about it, I'd be happy to answer. Feel free to post here, or send me a PM.
 

pollykahl

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This is an old thread but hopefully someone will take notice of my question and clue me in. I noticed Backspace has about 500 members while this has over 13,000. Backspace has a more professional presentation. I already donated $30 to this site because I am so happy here, and I have no income since I am writing full time, so shelling out another $30 for Backspace is a little much for me right now w/o feeling there are any real advantages.
 

Linda Adams

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The $30 gets you to their message board, which has a monthly session with an editor, agent, or writer where you can ask questions about the publishing industry (and archives of the past ones). All the guests writers are people you'd know and probably have read.

Because it's paid, the message board also tends to have less problems than the free ones--you don't get nutcases coming in and getting stupid.

And it's the only board I've seen with more of an emphasis on thriller than sci-fi/fantasy.
 

HapiSofi

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Can we help it if we're good at the online forum thing?

(Spa fon? Squa tront!)
 
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pollykahl

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How is backspace on memoir genre?

Thanks Linda, I appreciate it I am exclusively nonfiction and am working on four books. Three are in various states of progress and the one I am working on full time is a memoir. I will be working on the memoir exclusively until it is done. From your experience is BackSpace strong on memoir? I did notice there seems to be a little less drama over there and that may be related to the weeding out you spoke of.
 

Silver King

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...I did notice there seems to be a little less drama over there and that may be related to the weeding out you spoke of.
Heck, if all the drama were weeded from this site, you'd be left with a lot of dry soil.

As Eugene O'Neill would say, "Long live drama!"
 

pollykahl

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The sites looked alike to me in the beginning because they use some of the same templates, but I am starting to see that they are unique and I can definitely benefit from both.
 

Linda Adams

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Thanks Linda, I appreciate it I am exclusively nonfiction and am working on four books. Three are in various states of progress and the one I am working on full time is a memoir. I will be working on the memoir exclusively until it is done. From your experience is BackSpace strong on memoir? I did notice there seems to be a little less drama over there and that may be related to the weeding out you spoke of.

Not sure, to be perfectly honest. My books are fiction and thrillers, so that's what I tend to look for. :)

However, I did forget to mention that agents do look at the Backspace boards and even at some of the queries posted for critiques. Jeff Kleinman (Folio Literary) popped on one day with a general comment on queries. I think it was mentioned in the FAQs that occasionally someone has been able to make contact through the Q&A's with the agents.

There's also a LOT of published writers. There's always a huge list of people with a new book coming out in their monthly newsletter.
 

Toothpaste

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I'm a member and I think it is great. Almost everyone on the sight is either a published author, agent or editor. And many of the non-published writers go on to become just that (not that there aren't the same here, there totally are and I love AW, but because there is a fee and because of it's reputation the ratio is greater is my point). They also host a conference in NY (it'll be in two weeks around the same time as teh BEA).

Yes it's 30$, but it is an excellent learning opportunity, as well as networking opportunity. And the people there are very nice and professional.
 

atthebeach

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I joined, and I am glad I did. This forum is definitely larger, but Backspace has some agent inteviews and other things you only get through paid access. Since it was only a once a year fee, i tried it. I am also a non-fiction writer. At first I was disappointed that there was so much fiction info, but later I started visiting again and realized there was plenty of helpful info for me too. Worth far more than $30 imho.

I have not read the controversy posts mentioned above yet, maybe I'd better. :)
 

Marlys

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Yes, twice. There's usually a terrific keynote speaker (sometimes two), interesting and informative workshops and panels (disclaimer: I was on one of the panels last year and will be again this year), and the chance to hang out with writers at all stages of their careers. And, since I'm a member of Backspace, I get to see my online friends in person--but I think most of the attendees are not members (although many join up after the conference), so you shouldn't feel left out.

Is there anything specific you want to know?
 

Hummingbird

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Heh, when I first read the title of this thread I thought someone wanted to talk about how much they use the 'backspace' key when editing. ^__^
 

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Marlys: Thanks for the information. I was actually just at your site a few days ago!

I've never been to a writers' conference before, and I'm not sure what to really expect. I guess I'd like to know if the agents are approachable or if there are so many other writers there that if you don't know anyone, you never really get a chance to speak to them.

I've got a novel I'd like to begin shopping around to agents. It is sort of a "quiet horror" or good old fashioned ghost story -- I'm still trying to peg it.

Would you say this is a good conference for a first time conference attendee?
 

Claudia Gray

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I'm going (and speaking!) this year, although I haven't actually registered yet -- I'll be doing that tomorrow.
 

MJWare

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Backspace message boards

Anyone use the Backspace message boards? Do they have Children, MG, or YA boards?

Do they offer critiques?

I've heard good things about them, but my main reason for using the boards are user feedback on my writing, which is great here. However, I know there's lots of agents over there.

Since they are the one's I'm trying to impress I thought the boards might be worth the $40 fee (yes, you read they correctly forty buckaroos!)

I wrote them asking if they could provide me read only access, or if they could at least give me a list of the different forums.

I wasn't impressed with the reply, which was basically, No. Just paypal us $40 and if you don't like the boards you can cancel within five days.

I didn't care for that reply for lots of reasons. Mainly, work might interfere and I might not be able to even post anything for a week.

Anyone use the backspace boards???

PS. I love the water cooler! I just want to check out the grass on the other side.
 

MJWare

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I should add that their reply was prompt and courteous. It just didn't seem like they were willing to take the time to cut and paste a list of forums for me.
 

LLauren

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Backspace

Hi,

I'm not a member (yet) since I don't write books, but I do know co-founder Karen Dionne somewhat. Several years ago she and I were both members of another forum where moderation was extremely relaxed. A member made things very, very scary, and at that time Karen and others began Backspace. From the beginning it has done well. I know several professional authors who belong, and they say it is extremely good.

Five days seems like enough time to evaluate it. Even if you don't get to post you will get sufficient opportunity to see the forums. But if you are worried, you might mark your calendar and put a Post It note on your monitor to remind yourself of the deadline for the cancellation date. And did you know you can see a list of the forums here?
 
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