Filedby.com allows authors and publishers to create pages about themselves and then upload links to their books in every edition that is available for sale. The website also allows readers to rate and review books, in the same way that Amazon does.
From the website:
"Any author with a book published in the U.S. or Canada can join for free, claim their page, check for accuracy, provide corrections and enhance their pages.
"FiledBy was co-founded by Peter Clifton and Mike Shatzkin. Both Peter and Mike share a passion for authors, artists and their work and have spent many years in the publishing and media businesses. The company was started to provide every author with the tools to market successfully on the web.
"We look forward to working with you to build the best online author community!"
Filedby.com will no doubt be good for writers somehow, but I was dismayed when I saw that only print literature can be uploaded to the site for sale, creating a barrier for entry that makes us all continue to pretend that we live in the year 1993, and not the year 2009. If you have published an ebook that you would like to give away for free, you are shit out of luck as an author.
I understand what they are doing. If they opened this resource up, then anybody could go around SAYING that they were a writer. It would be madness. The proles would tear the hair out of every Barbie!
Yet, here is Clifton from his press release:
"We hope to level the web marketing playing field for all authors, eliminate some of the challenges authors face when designing their online presence, and help every author become more easily discoverable through a highly optimized site."
Every author in print, mind you. The main challenge that authors face when designing their online presence is whether or not they should be IN PRINT at all. If Filedby.com and Scribd.com merged, they would be truly formidable. Until that happens, however, I must fight for what I believe in the only way I know how.
Since the website launched today, all the author's pages and reviews are virgin territory, and I am not above being juvenile. When I saw this, my beady little eyes lit up, and over the course of a few hours, I must confess that I heartily did go apeshit with some deliberately provocative reviewer-graffiti.
It was like being a kid all alone in an empty shopping mall after everyone has gone home for the night. There I was, busting windows and trying on the maternity bras. I WAS EATING CINNABON ICING RIGHT OUT OF THE BAG.
Here are some choice reviews, the first and only reviews of these books so far:
"Finnegan's Wake," by James Joyce: "I saw the surprise ending coming a mile away."
"Dianetics," by L. Ron Hubbard: "After reading this book, I felt really pliable and stupid, even though the book was pretty boring. But it was strange: I finished the book, and no matter what anybody said, I would do it, like my will had been eroded by some kind of invasive, hostile force. My little sister was all like: "How about a piggy back ride?" and I COULD NOT SAY NO. I woke up in an alley a year later with my wallet gone, a persistent ringing in my ear, and so many scars. I think I like Mr. Hubbard's other works of adventure fiction better, like the one where the sky pirates teach those wily fighter-pilot Nazis some much needed sky-manners. I think it is called "Daring in the Air," or something."
"Catcher in the Rye," by J.D. Salinger: "Where else are you supposed to put toenail clippings? Are you supposed to save them up in a little glass vial, bronze them, and then display them on your mantle-piece next to your jars of urine and scrimshaw? One star."
"Atlas Shrugged," by Ayn Rand: "Pretty good, although I think she should have been more clear that none of the characters were black. Every time a new character was introduced, I had to read ahead to make sure."
"On the Road," by Jack Kerouac: "They never stopped at Shoney's once in this book, even though they must have passed Shoney's at least a hundred thousand times. Unrealistic. One star."
"The Stand," by Stephen King: "The Holland Tunnel TOTALLY has a catwalk running the entire length along one side, specifically to prevent people from being trapped in their cars. One star. This book is just fear-mongering."
"The Bible," by God: "More postmodern bullshit. Lists and lists and lists! Characters are introduced late in the story with whom we are expected to sympathize. Nihilistic, overblown, and ends on a sour note. Two stars.
"Twilight," by Stephenie Meyer: "At first I thought this was an inappropriate subject for teens. Teen sex? Vampires? So I didn't read it, and I never will. Teenagers need to learn how to follow the rules and date people who look and act like them and have the same amount of money!"
I encourage you to get out there and start using Filedby.com, especially if you are a published author and you want to find a way to reach your fans outside of the top-down, hate-filled maw of Amazon's reader reviews. Writing for Amazon is like flipping through the porn magazines in a seedy truck stop while the shopkeep breathes over your shoulder and tells you what THEY like to do.
If you are not an author, you will not be able to pretend to be one on "Filedby.com" until you buy an ISBN number. But until you get published, get yourself a Filedby.com "Reader" page and run amok! You have our blessing and support!
Posted by miracle on Thu, 26 Mar 2009 04:00:47 -0400 -- permanent link