[bookshare-discuss] Re: see long synopsis a waste and frustrating

Hi everyone,

Bookshare is definitely working to make synopses as high quality as
possible.  I've written about 130 of them in the past week because
well-represented books are very important to me.

I have a question for you all.  Do you mind it if a book has a tiny
description and then a referral to the long synopsis?  It would look
something like this.
"Bob goes to the store and gets abducted by aliens. See long synopsis."
I made that one up of course.  I don't hink Bob has been abducted by aliens
recently. <smile>. In any case, is that scenario good by you all? I normally try to avoid the statement see long synopsis, but once in a while I find a plot that fights me and resists being put into a little box. So I compromise as in the example
above. What do you think?

BTW, while I'm writing, thanks to Bob for his synopsis-writing help.  He's
been incredible!

Best,
Allison Hilliker:
Bookshare.org intern.
allison.h@xxxxxxxxxxxx

----- Original Message ----- From: "Bob" <rwiley@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
To: <bookshare-discuss@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Sent: Tuesday, April 15, 2008 1:47 AM
Subject: [bookshare-discuss] Re: see long synopsis a waste and frustrating


I want to second this opinion. I hate "see long synopsis" descriptions
almost as much as I hate the "none" designation.

A synopsis is usually easy to write even if you haven't read the entire
book. I've been assisting Allison Hiliker in writing synopses for
publisher quality books, and believe me, it's easy, and can be fun. I've
found several of those books I'd like to read, not because of the title or
author, but because of the short descriptions I find on the internet.

The short synopsis is a way to advertise your work. It introduces a reader
to the writing skills of the authors, and the patience and care of the
submitter and validator. (That's us folks.). Gone are the days when any
scanned book was admirable, because books were so valuable. Now, books are
valuable for themselves... what they have to say ... what they make us
think. And, I, for one, consider it an honor to introduce my fellow
readers to these valuable products of our efforts, and I want to do them
justice. And, "see long synopsis" doesn't do them justice, in my opinion.

Thanks.
Bob
----- Original Message ----- From: "Estelnalissi" <airadil@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
To: <bksvol-discuss@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Cc: <bookshare-discuss@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Sent: Monday, April 14, 2008 6:42 PM
Subject: [bookshare-discuss] see long synopsis a waste and frustrating


Dear Booksharian Friends,

Those words, "See long synopsis," which appeared on several titles on
Sunday's new books list frustrate and annoy me every time I read them.
From yesterday's list I uploaded 6 books but none of my choices had those
dreaded words in their descriptions.

Your valuable volunteer and staff efforts have given me so many
wonderful, usually unexpected, books to read, I don't take time from my
volunteering reading, and real life to look up titles that refer me to
the long synopsis.

I also don't punish myself either to make a point by failing to read
books I recognize that I like whose authors or titles I already know,
just because the submittor and validator didn't take time to write any
kind of helpful short synopsis for them. But, If I'm not familiar with
the book, I don't bother to track down a long synopsis. If volunteers
can't be bothered to write a helpful short synopsis, I conclude they
don't care much about that book and don't waste unnecessary time finding
out about it because I think it has a good chance of not being carefully
prepared.

If a volunteer cares about a book, you'd think she or he would want
others to benefit from their work. You'd think they would hope many
readers will select their book and it will be widely read. Why put your
own book in the seconds bin by not writing an inviting and/or informative
short synopsis for it? The short synopsis is the book's best publicity.

In other discussions some volunteers have used the excuse that they can't
write a long synopsis because they haven't read the book. By my personal
work standards That already shows a considerable amount of lack of
caring. However given the volunteer isn't planning to read the book, this
excuse still doesn't hold up. Why not formulate a short synopsis by
summarizing that famous long synopsis to which they direct potential
readers. It wouldn't take too long to dash out some brief high points
mentioned in that long synopsis. It's only 200 characters or less we're
hoping for.

I'll always appreciate everyone's work and am not targeting an individual
since I didn't look up any of these books to identify the volunteers who
write "See long synopsis."  I wouldn't dream of trying to manipulate the
volunteer community or the staff to weigh in on this issue or to
institute major changes according to my personal guidelines and desires.
It's my hope that expressing my opinion might result in some books in the
future being given the more detailed short synopses they deserve. And if
that happens or not, at least I've expressed my feelings.

I assume all of us have the good of Bookshare at heart. I've written this
pointed and fervent message from the perspective of both a volunteer and
a reader who loves Bookshare. I'm stating my opinion to encourage
volunteers to try a little harder to attract readers to their books and
to make book browsing more satisfying to me.

Always with love,

Lissi
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