khrystleraineduste

Posts Tagged ‘Point-of-View & Perspective

Ghost Writer

BOO!

You may well wonder with the number of ‘ghost-written’ blogs being presented. You know, ghost-writers? People who will, for a fee, write an article on any subject for another person to take credit for. Ghost writer.

There’s nothing wrong with this, per se, sometimes we go on vacation or are hospitalised and we don’t want our readers to be aware of our ‘disappearance’, so we hire a writer to bring a subject to life and dazzle our readers; the difficulty I have in this, is it’s not being honest.

Our readers think we are brilliant (do so!); they have come to enjoy our take on life not just to read for reading’s sake! (Or, at least I HOPE that’s how you come to read my stuff…) I’m not speaking of guest bloggers, those are awesome and bring a different outlook, (usually); a refreshing view, if you will. No, I’m speaking of those who, with a little manipulation and understanding of algorithms and ‘key-words’ pay writers to come up with original content to wow or impress their readers, only it’s not THEM who is/are doing the impressing.

It’s cheating, and I’m not a fan. I read blogs because I want to hear other opinions and get new ideas, not to get ‘high ranked words’. I like to hear a ‘voice’ come through, and having ghost-writers avoids the personality and just spits out regurgitated mumbo-jumbo.

Oh, most of those blogs are interesting, sort of, but they’re usually flat, because the ghost-writer has no ‘stake’ in the content. The fees paid, typically don’t equate to a high-level of intellectual involvement, just a quick jotting of words; and often times don’t ‘sound’ like what we’ve come to expect. (Although, with a few blogs being totally ghost-written, one may never become aware of this.)

I have recently taken on a few of these assignments, to ghost-write blogs for those without the time or ideas to fill their daily requirement and I must say they are a rude lot!

They demand a certain length for a paltry fee, and let you know that it will be unacceptable if it comes in at this length. They actually want it longer, but aren’t willing to cough up extra pennies to pay for the work.

They also are cagey about requesting the use of ‘key’ words. This is when you are aware you are writing for a client who is a taker. Someone who has figured the system out well enough to earn an income off of people simply clicking ad buttons on their blog that only reflects the top 100 ‘key’ words, although, the content might be great.

Again, it’s not that I’m against people benefitting from a flawed system, (how do I jump onboard?) it’s that I despise someone taking credit for something they haven’t done! Or, maybe I hate the fact that we can be duped so easily. (I say we; even though I am guilty of writing some articles, I still don’t know for WHOM I wrote them…)

So WHY do I (and other good writers) do it?

The money. I need the extra income due to some interesting developments in my personal life. (Nope still married, sorry dudes…lol). Others may want a vacation and sales give them disposable income; others may find expenses mounting and need the income; or an unexpected bill (my case). I’m not knocking the practise; just …why not admit: Written by… For…; would it be so wrong?

So, enjoy well written blogs but don’t despair over not being as ‘perfect’ or as ‘awesome’ as some – chances are it’s a community effort…

Me? I’ll keep writing whatever pays, (yup, willing to prostitute my writing – I like writing too much not to), I’ll just remember what I read may not be what the blogger actually wrote…

Now to look at these reviews and see which products I’m going to pretend I’ve used and write a glowing, or scathing, report for…

preferring the truth,
~khrys…

PS: Yep, I wrote this… think I ought to hire someone else?

PHOTO CREDIT (IRONICALLY)

~*~*~*~*~

Advertisements

There’s a little (or BIG) box at the bottom that may or may not contain advertising – I really don’t know – I don’t control it. But when I clicked to find out what it was, this is the blurb shown:

~*~

The site you just visited is part of WordPress.com.
There are two reasons why you might see ads on a WordPress.com site:
The site is part of the WordAds program and has elected to show ads to earn money from their site.
The site is one of the sites hosted on WordPress.com that has not purchased the No Ads upgrade, and we are running ads to cover the costs of operating the site for the user. We run these types of ads sparingly in an attempt to interfere as little as possible with the experience of reading a site. There’s more info about our approach to ad serving in this blog post.
In both of the above cases, the ad you saw could be coming from a number of ad partners including, but not limited to: Sharethrough, Visible Measures, or AdSense. The ads change depending on factors like your location and the type of site you are visiting.
If you are a WordPress.com user and you would like to permanently remove all ads from your site, please take a look at our No Ads upgrade.
If you saw an inappropriate ad, please report it to support@wordpress.com. Please include the address of the site (e.g., http://example.wordpress.com), the date/time the ad appeared, and a screenshot of the ad.

~*~

Now, okay, I am in agreement. If I am not paying for the site, ads are a way for WordPress to help mitigate their costs hoping readers will press the advertisement they place below (HOPEFULLY) my content. Really though, what say do I have of where they place it or what it will promote?

I am already involved with another site that espouses so much rhetoric about how they do NOT want ‘inappropriate’ ANYTHING and yet, I have not seen one advertisement directed at me (because they say they are all algorithm’d to show ONLY what our interests are). What am I treated to on the sidebar of advertisements? Whores plying their trade. Or young Asian (insert nearly any ethnicity here) girls. Or sexual aids; ads to videos that of course I want to view – after all they are aimed directly to/for ME!

So, for one, I hope that these ads will be more tasteful and none that make me decide I shall have to remove my blog. No, I’m not a prude, but if I don’t ask to see it; or give an indication that it is within my interests, then, presumably it is not in my readers interests either. I could be wrong. I apologise if I am.

What prompted me to motion, though, is the hoops they (WordPress) expect you to jump through to report offensive advertisement.

I believe if WordPress is ALLOWING these ads then they’d better do some diligence in keeping records of which ad was placed with which blogger and when.

I feel that reporting an offensive advertisement should include the site it was viewed on, (that makes sense). You should include the day and approximate time you viewed it. But as for a screen shot? No offense but that is asking for a casual viewer to do WordPress’ work for them. They hired the ad; they took their money; they set up the rotation for them, chances are they already KNOW what ad is getting the complaints.

Anyway, sorry that you will be plagued by ads in that little square, (according to WP, ‘not often’), because I simply cannot afford to pay for a no-ad blog. And do please report offensive ads.

*hugs*
~khrys…

Time change at the end of Daylight Saving Time...

(Credit: Wikipedia)

Yeah, I know, it happened a few days ago. I’m just coming to terms with it now.

I understand the perceived need to have a ‘longer day’ when farming communities needed more daylight to operate and get crops in. Or during war, so more of our waking hours were spent in the sun and less with the moon.

No, WAIT! No, I do NOT understand the theory behind Daylight Savings Time.

Where is this ‘bank’ and how long have I been saving up hours??? I’m ready to spend them now…

That idea makes about as much sense as taking an hour off the end of our day and adding it to the beginning. Did ANYONE change their schedule? No. Our alarms are still set for the same time. Our bosses, (well, yours does; mine’s given up…) still expect us to show up at the same time. Schools will certainly be phoning if your kid isn’t there at the last bell.

And STILL we delude ourselves that we’ve actually SAVED time.

HOW?

All I see is that now, instead of getting light at eight a.m., it gets lighter at seven. So much for my sleep in. And instead of having time after work to go play, it’s dark by four-thirty rather than five-thirty. So much for that romp in the park.

Now, I am okay with this timing (darkness hovering when I would like light) if it would stay put. But nooooooo. Just as it, and I, get all settled down, along comes April and they reverse the program. Now we REALLY are SAVING time.

We get up an hour later! Yippee! Sleep in time! Except, oh. It’s Spring! Who wants to sleep in?! Daylight starts around four-thirty, birds are up by six. Then they dump the time change and WHAT? Birds are up at five? So much for sleeping in. Guess someone forgot to let them know about the time change. Carrier Pigeons, maybe?

Exactly WHO (WHOM?) does this continued reliance on an archaic system benefit? I would rather keep my inner clock working on its pattern without hiccuping it twice a year for something that has NO advantages, and, as far as I can tell, is actually HARMFUL.

How many insurance companies will tell you, “Be extra cautious this week; statistically crashes and injuries rise by 50% or MORE the week following the change.” (And we ain’t talking hot flashes here!) SO WHY DO WE INSIST ON CHANGING TIME?

Does it REALLY matter? Do WE really use this ‘extra time’ for anything OTHER than confusion and fogginess?

I heard this saying about four years ago, and I think it sums it up VERY appropriately:

A Wise, Ancient, (Native) Indian Saying:

ONLY THE WHITE-MAN WOULD CUT A FOOT OFF THE BOTTOM OF A BLANKET, SEW IT TO THE TOP AND THINK THEY HAD A LONGER BLANKET…

Time change, an archaic program for a need which no longer exists. Yet dumping it? Will cost…NOTHING. So we couldn’t possibly afford it. Thank you for your time, have a nice, longer/shorter day/night…

Tongue-in-cheek,
*hugs*
luv khrys…

PS: I apologise for not keeping up with posts and responses. I am so happy to have you reading my ramblings and I hope I do entertain; perplex; motivate or cause discussion at the very least… BUT as I am trying that NANOMO challenge, which should really be called ‘How-Long-Before-You-Figure-Out-The-Novel-You-Have-Decided-To-Work-On-Is-Stuck-In-Quick (slow?)-Sand-and-You-Are-Sinking-Fast’ But I guess that title was either a) taken or b) too long… (HLBYFOTNYHDTWOISIQSAYASF… yep! Definitely TOO long… LOL)
Anyway, I want to say… I am reading and catching up and writing short notes when I find a moment. This challenge is fun and I am determined to complete it. Even if all I have is a rough draft novel, ready for publication, but with caveats! And a coupon for a FREE copy of the REVISED version when it’s ready… Least I can do. (Either that or I’ll donate ALL the proceeds to the NANOMO foundation… that might be less stressful!)

And, if YES, why for you not tell the rest of us…? *wry grin*

Although I am SURE I have read this in the past, (only because I THINK I have an account… not sure if it’s hotmail, or what they mean, but that isn’t important…right now, anyway), but I am relearning Excel. (When you don’t do something for a long time, you tend to forget the short-cuts and rules etc…). To do one (or any, I suppose) of the tutorials (which, BTW are a JOKE!) you need to agree with this agreement, or, as always, don’t use the products.

Okay, as ALWAYS I read (want to put ‘red’ LOL) the agreement, and, as always I don’t understand it. Basically, most of these agreements say, (my words), “We promise to offer you this fantastic product completely at your own risk. Agree or don’t use.”

Reading, I was stopped DEAD in my tracks… (okay, so my butt made a deeper groove in the seat), by the following: (Torn to shreds by me, but left intact in each point form. IE: RED = my comment; BOLDING = I did it; their words.)

Microsoft services agreement

Excerpted from Microsoft Services Agreement. Click here for entire agreement.

3.3. What does Microsoft do with my content? When you upload your content to the services, you agree that it may be used, modified, adapted, saved, reproduced, distributed, and displayed to the extent necessary to protect you and to provide, protect and improve Microsoft products and services. For example, we may occasionally use automated means to isolate information from email, chats, or photos in order to help detect and protect against spam and malware, or to improve the services with new features that makes them easier to use. When processing your content, Microsoft takes steps to help preserve your privacy.

(GRANTED MOST VIRUS PROGRAMS ISOLATE INFO TO DIVERT TO CORRECT BOXES, BUT THEY ARE NOT USING THE CONTENT FOR THEIR BENEFIT.) 

3.4. Does Microsoft have voice enabled services? Yes. If you use voice enabled services, you consent to Microsoft recording and collecting your voice input. The voice input will be used to provide the voice enabled services to you and improve Microsoft products and services. Microsoft won’t use your voice input for any other purpose.

(WHAT OTHER PURPOSE IS THERE?)

3.5. What type of content isn’t permitted? Content that violates this agreement (which includes the Microsoft Anti-Spam Policy and the Microsoft Code of Conduct) or your local law isn’t permitted on the services. Microsoft reserves the right to review content for the purpose of enforcing this agreement. Microsoft may block or otherwise prevent delivery of any type of email, instant message, or other communication to or from the services as part of our effort to protect the services or our customers, or otherwise enforce the terms of this agreement. 

5.1. Does Microsoft collect my personal information? Your privacy is important to us. We use certain information that we collect from you to operate and provide the services. Additionally, as part of the services, we may also automatically upload information about your machine, your use of the services, and services performance. We may use technologies, such as placing cookies on your machine, to help us gather such information. Please read the Microsoft Online Privacy Statement to learn how we use and protect your information.

(LONG WINDED WAY OF SAYING “YES, WE COLLECT AND USE YOUR INFO FOR OUR BENEFIT.”)

5.2. Does Microsoft disclose my personal information outside of Microsoft? You consent and agree that Microsoft may access, disclose, or preserve information associated with your use of the services, including (without limitation) your personal information and content, or information that Microsoft acquires about you through your use of the services (such as Internet Protocol address or other third-party information) when Microsoft forms a good faith belief that doing so is necessary (a) to comply with applicable law or to respond to legal process from competent authorities; (b) to enforce this agreement or protect the rights or property of Microsoft or our customers; or (c) to help prevent a loss of life or serious physical injury to anyone.

(AN EVEN LONGER WINDED WAY OF SAYING “YES, WE DISCLOSE YOUR INFO FOR OUR BENEFIT.”)

13. You may be able to access third-party websites or services via the services. Microsoft isn’t responsible for third-party websites, services, or content available through those third-party services. You are solely responsible for your dealings with third-parties (including advertisers). Your use of third-party websites or services may be subject to that third-party’s terms and conditions.

(SO, EVEN THOUGH MS STEERS YOU TO THESE SITES VIA ‘HELP’, THEY TAKE NO RESPONSIBILITY FOR THEM BEING SPAMMY-MALWARE FILLED HACKING SITES; BUT PLEASE, “TRUST US (MS)…”)

And I thought e-mail was PRIVATE. And that those sites I’m diverted to, via the HELP MENU INSIDE MICROSOFT’S OWN PROGRAMS, were safe. 

Apparently, as with everything else on the internet, they (MS) make it work, kinda, then they (MS) tout it as the greatest thing since humankind appeared, then they (MS) exploits every tiny crevasse of it. THEN, (and ONLY then) do they (MS) actually check to see if it works properly. And when it doesn’t? That’s OUR fault. We downloaded/purchased a product that wasn’t ready. But the next one is coming out with better and greater and it’ll work more… we (MS) promise. 

Getting back to the agreement (yeah, but conversation never lags…*smirk*).
Standing on my SoapBoxI thought e-mail was sacrosanct. That reading it without approval (or court order) was akin to opening my snail-mail and punishment would be as if they (the ‘post office’) opened or read the contents of something directly addressed to me.
I guess because MS warned me they are going to be disseminating my mail, it’s okay for them to do so. I’ve given my permission by continuing to use their service. Apparently. Gotta wonder the fun they’re going to have reading the next few e-mails I send… (Wonder how soon before ‘Homeland’ pays me a visit? LOL!)

It does bug me. What I write in an e-mail is for the other person (and whom they chose to share it with) not for a third-party to intercept and DECIDE or decipher, the meaning of. MS has NO IDEA of the context of my message. If I write about checking if the poison will kill a person in so-and-so many minutes or if so much Nitro is enough to take out a city block, or if the code sounds familiar; they will instantly assume I am up-to-no-good.

Out of context, even I will admit it looks suspicious. But then, I’m not expecting someone who isn’t the recipient of my note to intercept it. I know the expert at the other end will understand I am plotting a devious crime and need to be sure of my facts before the crime reveals itself deep within the pages of my novel. MS’s ‘algorithms’ most likely won’t.

Understand, that is.

How many people does it take to disseminate the quadrillion-babillion e-mails sent daily? And turn them into logistical opportunities for law enforcement? And how many false-positives? Versus positive, concrete evidence that leads to a larger conspiracy and valuable arrests? BEFORE they’ve (cops) identified the players?? There’s GOT to be an easier (& more accurate) way.

I understand threats etc…

The terrorists HAVE won.

We’re told ALL the time, “We won’t negotiate with terrorists.”

No, they won’t. Why? Because the terrorists have already won.

We hide; we change our laws and security measures; we suspect everyone of everything; we profile; we err on the side of caution; we avoid places and people; we assume bad, without hesitation; we lose. We lose because while the world is a big beautiful place, it’s turned into and ugly cesspool of doubt.

I have to divert this information into a novel… except I think it’s been done to death…

Climbing off the soapbox once again…soapbox

I hope I made some sense…

*hugs*
luv khrys…

PS: Remember me when the proverbial poop flies too close to the cooling apparatus… *giggles*

 

It is frustrating.

I write; go back and read. When, exactly, did I switch from ‘gets’ a coffee, to ‘got’ a coffee? When did I ‘jump up’ and ‘shouted’? Where did I ‘went’ and ‘get’ in the same sentence??? 

First-person, present tense; points of view; perspective?! It is so very hard to stick with a singular method throughout. I toss my hands up and scream in abject discouragement! 

Of course, I toss my hands up whenever I have to figure out what style I’m writing in; and yet it’s so very important to understand.
I don’t know why, but Editors get quite upset when you screw this up… 

As the story unfolds through the eyes of a character, an author must remember not to give credibility to something the character doesn’t know. I know it’s hard to stay in one ‘head’. I want to tell you something, but, ‘oops – can’t do that – you won’t find that out for a few more chapters’. Hence, I’m constantly going back, re-writing sentences; paragraphs; chapters! I start using those pronouns (I think, I never could figure out sentence structure) that don’t belong. 

(The AUTHOR obviously knows.) We can infer; postulate; assume; hypothesise; imagine; conjecture; put forth; surmise; speculate; suppose… Am I getting my point across?

I look at Dick. I know he remembers he left the stove on. Does he now? How, the heck, do I know that? (First-person I, not I, me – the author; I – me the character)  

I look at Dick, who, jumps up and shouts, “I’ve left the bleedin’ stove on!” Well, NOW I (the character) KNOW. Now, I can reveal that to the firemen later when they ask about the fire, and probable cause. I can say, with all honesty, “Well, I do know Dick said he left the stove on.”  

Note: I can’t say the stove was left on, because I don’t KNOW that. I only know that Dick SAID he left the stove on.  

For some reason we just can’t KNOW what’s in another’s mind. I know; I don’t get it either. I mean, is it or is it not MY book? Are they or are they not MY characters? Of course, I know what’s in her mind! 

Ah-Ha! Yes. YOU (or rather I) do. Your (my) character, alas, does not. Unless she is a sikick…pshi…pcshyc…phsyicic…mind reader… Characters have to play by the same rules as the rest of the world. 

Silly little rules. Nevertheless, important. Dang rules.  

I am the biggest rule breaker, I think. I have always had a rebellious streak. Still, even I can’t get away with re-ordering the entire language. (I don’t know why… all language started somewhere…) I have to follow the rules, or at least be aware I am breaking them. (That is sometimes enough to give leeway; when you know you’ve done it wrong, but it’s done that way purposely, it somehow makes it right. Re-read that if you didn’t get it.) 

If I am the only one who will ever read my epics, then sure, I write without care or caution. Who wants that? What author only wants themselves to read their works; their art! So, yes, I must restrain my rebellious ways and modestly follow as many rules as I am able, before my spirit takes hold again and winds a whisper of smoke around my imagination; the tantalizing aroma of the fire drawing me away from the order and structure into anarchy and re-writes… 

It is hard to control the imagination. Some days, your most valiant efforts are simply not enough and whatever you were planning had best be set aside; for no amount of scolding will draw it from the edges of time and play, where alternate realities roam freely, waiting to be attached to comfortable, familiar thoughts and governed into neatly ordered compartments; before refusing to fit. 

Yes, dear friends; I am struggling with what it is I’m struggling with! Who is speaking? Who is guiding? What is the compelling goal? What is the best way to convey information? Figure this out and you will have found your voice. Your point-of-view. Your Perspective. Pay attention to it and guard it closely, for when you least expect it… it will abandon you… like a playful Sprite… it will be back… if you’re nice… And have a lock-box ready… 

*hugs*
…luv khrys
 

PS: For those who are going to complain; I’m sorry, my brain mis-fired and won’t let the information I want out. I’ve decided I’ll drag it out another day, for today… this is my brain… (Maybe I need to change the blog name… This is my brain? This is my brain on words? Come back brain. Come back…) Tomorrow… will get here soon enough, don’t rush it!


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