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  • #46
    'P.S. The B5 Books Team will be at the Phoenix Comic-Con in May.'

    Please say nice things about the 'Echoes' books.

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    • #47
      Not directed at Jan whatsoever (who has taken enough abuse just for having put themselves in a "devil's advocate" position ):

      What riles me (and I suspect others) is the sense that there is a team of hardcore fans who love what they are doing, are getting paid for doing it, and don't know when to stop - I'm not suggesting that this sum is a FORTUNE, and I'm sure it remains a large part labor of love. But nonetheless, more effort is being put seemingly into justifying their continued existence as a team (looking for increasingly thin projects) then on ensuring that these are truly valuable pieces of treasure for a large fanbase.

      In a few years this series has gone from the greatest thing to ever happen in the B5 fan community to just shy of a vanity press, and a costly one at that. Economic realities being what they are, the price has gone up, because they can't possibly sell as many of these books as the original series to justify the pre-production costs.

      I couldn't accept that with any work I was personally doing... I'd be breaking my back trying to find a way to WIDEN the appeal of the work, rather than content myself to a shrinking base. I wish for nothing more than that they packed it in for now, went off to do other things, saving up any new things that are "unearthed" and making those an AWESOME bonus for when the remaining couple of ACTUAL script books get released (Crusade, etc), which is all that would justify "getting the band back together" at this point. But its very tempting to just come up with some other way of keeping this train going.

      JMS himself sagely realized after Lost Tales that he was DILUTING the greatness of the original work. I wish the scripts team would follow his lead.

      A&A and Echoes would have been WONDERFUL ebook series, instead of outrageously priced books. When JMS started this series he made the reasonable claim that 40$ for 7 scripts was an incredible bargain because usually scriptbooks were like 2 scripts for 40$... (Buffy, Star Trek...) at this point this is no longer the case.

      But I digress...

      On another note I have finally set down to rewatch the whole series after a few years and am doing it with the script books that I had previously only thumbed through and they are truly great things. JMS' "liner notes" really improves the experience - especially since he's the most honest creator I've ever seen. (ie: copping to bad episodes, mistakes, etc)

      PS: Holy crap was I long winded just now. I should prolly edit this down further but I'm wiped!
      ---
      Sam.
      Last edited by SamusekTDS; 01-31-2013, 04:20 PM.

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      • #48
        Just for the record, in no way shape or form have I ever played 'devil's advocate'.

        Anything else I were to say in response to that post simply wouldn't go over very well.

        Jan
        "As empathy spreads, civilization spreads. As empathy contracts, civilization contracts...as we're seeing now.

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        • #49
          Sam, the flaw in your argument is you make it sound as though somebody was forcing people to buy these books. If you're not interested, don't buy 'em. Somehow I think the Earth will happily turn on its axis. On the other hand, for those who may want to continue exploring some of the unexplored corners of the B5/Crusade universe, they may find the books a worthwhile investment. Until somebody grabs an unwitting B5 fan, turns them upside down and extracts money from the wallet that falls out of their pocket, I'm not sure there is an issue here.

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          • #50
            Originally posted by Joe Nazzaro View Post
            Sam, the flaw in your argument is you make it sound as though somebody was forcing people to buy these books. If you're not interested, don't buy 'em. Somehow I think the Earth will happily turn on its axis. On the other hand, for those who may want to continue exploring some of the unexplored corners of the B5/Crusade universe, they may find the books a worthwhile investment. Until somebody grabs an unwitting B5 fan, turns them upside down and extracts money from the wallet that falls out of their pocket, I'm not sure there is an issue here.
            Oh get over yourself.
            "Jan Schroeder is insane" - J. Michael Straczynski, March 2008

            The Station: A Babylon 5 Podcast

            Comment


            • #51
              Originally posted by Joe Nazzaro View Post
              Sam, the flaw in your argument is you make it sound as though somebody was forcing people to buy these books. If you're not interested, don't buy 'em. Somehow I think the Earth will happily turn on its axis. On the other hand, for those who may want to continue exploring some of the unexplored corners of the B5/Crusade universe, they may find the books a worthwhile investment. Until somebody grabs an unwitting B5 fan, turns them upside down and extracts money from the wallet that falls out of their pocket, I'm not sure there is an issue here.
              What he said.

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              • #52
                Wow. Arguments can get a bit heated over the B5 Books huh?

                The way I see it, Sam has an opinion, and it's exactly that, an opinion. I don't see the point in trying to nit pick flaws in his argument. We can all accept different points of view right? It's not an outright attack, and there's as much praise in there as there is criticism.

                I'm relatively new to the script books (which I'm still collecting on the second hand market). I tried Echoes Vol 3 as my first B5 Scripts Team book and enjoyed it. I did feel it was a bit expensive for a POD book (this was without the usual release discount), but I'm not in any hurry to return it or anything, so that should be proof enough I feel I got my money's worth.

                I had a good discussion with Jaclyn about the POD model and she was very helpful and happy to discuss pretty much any aspect of that. Polite and professional througout. With a full no questions asked refund policy, it's kinda hard to take issue.

                I'm waiting on my Vol 2.5 to drop through the letter box, so I'll have more to say when I get it. With the coupons and discount this one didn't seem too steep. With respect to the other books, I kinda wish I'd jumped on board earlier.

                Maybe I'll suggest to Jaclyn that there's a 'late to the party discount day' for us new fans who want the older books in an afordable way!? I could see that being quite good for sales! (or it might be wishful thinking on my part!)
                Last edited by Ubik; 02-01-2013, 07:42 AM.
                Captain John Sheridan: I really *hate* it when you do that.

                Kosh: Good!

                Comment


                • #53
                  An aside: One of my favorite book series has a complex social structure based on melanti, in which one person might well have to express himself differently depending on what role he was playing. An example might be that the head of a corporation might express different opinions when speaking on behalf of the corporation than she would when speaking as a wife or mother.

                  I have three roles that can be reflected here on the Forums: Moderator, Script Team member and simple fan. I think most people are aware of this and I try to make it clear what role I post under but in this thread it might get muddled. So unless I say differently, please assume that I'm posting as just another fan.

                  Originally posted by Ubik View Post
                  The way I see it, Sam has an opinion, and it's exactly that, an opinion. I don't see the point in trying to nit pick flaws in his argument. We can all accept different points of view right? It's not an outright attack, and there's as much praise in there as there is criticism.
                  Not exactly. Or rather, what he had to say would be valid only if that post had started out with "I decided against buying the book and this is why." If he bought the book and decided that he didn't care for it after all, the most reasonable choice would be to return it.

                  Sharing feelings here is absolutely fine but if Sam felt that way and bought the latest book anyway, there's really nobody to blame but himself. And if he'd like to see a widened appeal, then that's what he should share - here for the sake of discussion or to Captain Jaclyn if it might be something she might find worth considering. As a Team member, I can tell you that fan suggestions have been taken many times. In fact, that's *exactly* how I came to be on the team. And exactly why my credit in the books reads the way it does.

                  Can anybody possibly pretend that they didn't know what they were getting when they ordered? The email and website have screenshots and an exact description of what's in the book. So if somebody didn't want that, why on Earth would they order it in the first place?!

                  Because Joe Nazzaro is absolutely right - there's no coersion involved at all.

                  Funny thing about this is...I have a friend who decided not to buy the script books at all because they weren't going to include every single draft of every single script.

                  Maybe I'll suggest to Jaclyn that there's a 'late to the party discount day' for us new fans who want the older books in an afordable way!? I could see that being quite good for sales! (or it might be wishful thinking on my part!)
                  (puts on her Script Team hat) Naturally you should ask Captain Jaclyn but my feeling is that when you see the line in the email that a book will *never* be discounted again, that's a promise to the fans and not just hype. However, I urge you to write to her and see if there's anything that might be done on an individual basis.

                  Jan
                  "As empathy spreads, civilization spreads. As empathy contracts, civilization contracts...as we're seeing now.

                  Comment


                  • #54
                    Well, i didn't end up buying it. As much as i want to hear that version and see the pictures, it just was too much to spend for me on that. Things are tight, and that didn't fit the budget of 'Needs'. Was it over priced? Maybe.... Im not going to buy it for $40 thats for sure. If its stayed in the $20 range... maybe i would get it if it was still available when things weren't so tight.

                    I have not boughten ALL the books either, although i did get the first 15 script books and the echo's books. I picked and chose on those also as to how best to spend a limited 'budget'. Im still surprised i spend so much on the first script books, but knowing they were coming and them being spread out helped to spread the cost and allow me to get the entire set. For that i am extremely grateful.

                    Having not seen the new book myself, i can't judge the value fairly i suppose. In all i guess im disappointed that i didn't get to see or enjoy what this book and cd was. Im concerned that this is a starting trend, even though it has been stated it isn't, because i would hate to know there is all of this additional stuff out there i didn't/can't get. :P

                    Edit: PS that was my 200th post! Not sure if that was good or bad....
                    Milkman
                    www.mhoc.net

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                    • #55
                      Originally posted by Jan View Post
                      An aside: One of my favorite book series has a complex social structure based on melanti, in which one person might well have to express himself differently depending on what role he was playing. An example might be that the head of a corporation might express different opinions when speaking on behalf of the corporation than she would when speaking as a wife or mother.
                      Jan, that sounds fascinating, what book series is this?

                      Originally posted by Jan View Post

                      Not exactly. Or rather, what he had to say would be valid only if that post had started out with "I decided against buying the book and this is why." If he bought the book and decided that he didn't care for it after all, the most reasonable choice would be to return it.

                      Sharing feelings here is absolutely fine but if Sam felt that way and bought the latest book anyway, there's really nobody to blame but himself. And if he'd like to see a widened appeal, then that's what he should share - here for the sake of discussion or to Captain Jaclyn if it might be something she might find worth considering. As a Team member, I can tell you that fan suggestions have been taken many times. In fact, that's *exactly* how I came to be on the team. And exactly why my credit in the books reads the way it does.

                      Can anybody possibly pretend that they didn't know what they were getting when they ordered? The email and website have screenshots and an exact description of what's in the book. So if somebody didn't want that, why on Earth would they order it in the first place?!

                      Because Joe Nazzaro is absolutely right - there's no coersion involved at all. Funny thing about this is...I have a friend who decided not to buy the script books at all because they weren't going to include every single draft of every single script.
                      I had to go back and re-read SamÆs post again. Fair enough, I inferred from the post that he wouldnÆt be buying the 2.5 book, because he saw it as a dilution of the original books, or perhaps one step too far in terms of digging up material. I canÆt really speak for him, but thatÆs how I read it. Some will value all the extra material that has been unearthed, others will not. I guess you can always vote with your wallet (or not). Anyhow, I donÆt think he intended for it to pulled apart in such detail. In general, I think the exchange of views is good, and as you say, getting in touch with the scripts team (who IÆve found to be very open and receptive to ideas) would be the most constructive path.

                      Originally posted by Jan View Post

                      (puts on her Script Team hat) Naturally you should ask Captain Jaclyn but my feeling is that when you see the line in the email that a book will *never* be discounted again, that's a promise to the fans and not just hype. However, I urge you to write to her and see if there's anything that might be done on an individual basis.

                      Jan
                      That popped into my head shortly after IÆd made the post. The early discount is a good way to encourage sales, and I understand the logic behind making it time limited. I may approach her directly as you suggest.
                      Captain John Sheridan: I really *hate* it when you do that.

                      Kosh: Good!

                      Comment


                      • #56
                        Originally posted by Milkman View Post
                        Im concerned that this is a starting trend, even though it has been stated it isn't, because i would hate to know there is all of this additional stuff out there i didn't/can't get. :P
                        (Team hat - far more fetching than the Mod hat, thank goodness!) I can understand that concern because I can see how somebody outside might think that it's 'convenient' for us to unearth things as we have. The thing to remember is that almost all of this stuff is coming from a storage unit, from boxes that were packed, probably hurriedly, when the production was shut down after Crusade ended. When it's a massive move, one puts things that fit together into boxes with little rhyme or reason. That's what Jason and his crew have had to deal with. Much of the cool stuff that's been found has been while searching for other things entirely, sometimes in seemingly (to we who weren't involved with production) unrelated files.

                        In this case in particular, the book would never have seen the light of day if Jason's contact hadn't found the script. I didn't have it. JMS didn't have it. It was after that was obtained that another foray to the storage unit turned up the VHS tape of the producer's cut.

                        [Fangirl mode] Tell ya what, everybody tell JMS that he needs *me* to hang out at his next series and archive everything all neat and tidy and accessible...just in case... [/Fangirl mode]

                        Edit: PS that was my 200th post! Not sure if that was good or bad....
                        Geez, took you long enough!! What, you only post when you have something to say? Where's the fun in that?

                        Originally posted by Ubik View Post
                        Jan, that sounds fascinating, what book series is this?
                        The Liaden Universe books by Steve Miller and Sharon Lee. Highly recommended. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Liaden_universe

                        Anyhow, I donÆt think he intended for it to pulled apart in such detail.
                        Probably not. But the reason why I had to walk away from it last night is that in one aspect, he's absolutely right -
                        " it remains a large part labor of love"
                        ...and not only that, there's a lot of *pride* in making sure that fans are getting as much coolness as possible - such as Jason's analyses. He's done all the tedious comparing of drafts and gives insight into the whys and wherefores. So...if we sometimes take comments like:

                        But nonetheless, more effort is being put seemingly into justifying their continued existence as a team (looking for increasingly thin projects) then on ensuring that these are truly valuable pieces of treasure...
                        ...kind of personally you need to forgive us and remember that you're talking directly to the people who put the books out, not some nameless entity. We understand that each book won't be for everyone but it stings to be accused of anything but wanting to put out a good product.

                        Jan
                        "As empathy spreads, civilization spreads. As empathy contracts, civilization contracts...as we're seeing now.

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                        • #57
                          Well, mine was sitting on the doormat when I got in. More later, once I've had a chance to digest it.

                          Jan, I guess the challenge is not to take the more negative stuff to heart (hard of course when you are so closely involved). It's good that there are fans fanatical enough to produce these books in the first place. I can think of few other shows that have a similar wealth of information available.
                          Captain John Sheridan: I really *hate* it when you do that.

                          Kosh: Good!

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                          • #58
                            Ironically, there are all sorts of genre fandoms out there which have grown moribund because there is simply nothing new to keep the old fans interested and bring new fans in. With the B5 script books, it's a bit like going to an all-you-can-eat breakfast and somebody complaining that they don't want to pay for the extra bacon, because, well, they don't like bacon. As I mentioned earlier, nobody is forcing you to sit down for that breakfast at all, but don't complain just because other people are enjoying it.

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                            • #59
                              Originally posted by Joe Nazzaro View Post
                              blah blah blah

                              Yes, we know. Do you have anything new to contribute?
                              "Jan Schroeder is insane" - J. Michael Straczynski, March 2008

                              The Station: A Babylon 5 Podcast

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                              • #60
                                Apparently not as far as you're concerned. But thank you for your insights.

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