A few days ago, I received an e-mail from The Red Room management, a solicitation to offer opinions as to why there had been such an anemic response to The Red Room CEO Ivory Madison's offer to allow members to buy books for 40% off - - if we pay $45 for the privilege (the price went up to $95 after September 8, 2012 - - yesterday). This seems an attempt, based on Ms. Madison's e-mail, to add mounds of additional books to The Red Room bookstore.
I'm afraid a measure of frustration had been building on my part - while my blog's readership has been growing tremendously over the last year (thank you one and all), I had an axe to grind and, although I didn't intend to, I unloaded on Huntington Sharp, The Red Room senior editor. My complaints were thus:
- I had paid the $250 for Premium Membership, and to date have not sold a single book here
- I was finding it hard to sustain conversations with other members of this website
- I couldn't find my books in the bookstore
- I claimed that The Red Room was doing little or nothing to help me promote my books or my blog
- Sorry you're not enjoying the Premium experience
- We did feature one of your books (I didn't know that and was never notified)
- We are currently featuring one of your blog posts (didn't know it, wasn't notified)
- Maybe you should interact proactively with other members.
On Huntington's last point, I was guilty of my own complaint - I occasionally read posts, but don't always comment. My resolve is to read more and to comment more (note that since then I've read and commented on a number of posts and have received no comments in return)
But I don't want to make today's post about me - -
As I've taken some time to go through The Red Room's many places of visitation, several things occured to me:
- The Red Room does offer quite a lot, to members, to authors, known and unknown
- Management continually modifies things, modernizes, makes things more efficient for the members
- Even with (actually, because of) what The Red Room offers, it's near-impossible to keep abreast of all that potentially affects us as members and authors.
- As with any ambitious website, The Red Room, while offering much to all members, leans toward already recognized authors.
And so I'm offering, via this post, the following suggestions to all of you who already read my posts, to you other friends here at The Red Room, and to The Red Room management:
- Management needs to be aware that members and authors don't have time to fully explore what's offered here and should at the very least notify members and/or authors when something of theirs is featured.
- The Red Room has great deals on all books through offers such as the $45/$95 one mentioned, and members should explore those and buy them then they find something worthy.
- Most importantly, members should be more proactive in exploring the works of lesser-known authors here, should read these and review them - for better or worse. Find new bloggers, and red their posts. Be proactive in seeking recognition for struggling writers you think worthy. It's your - and their - website as well as that of the more recognized writers.
Please! Even if you don't reply back to me regarding my concerns with The Red Room, think about them, pass them on to your friends here, and let management know what can make things more relevant for you. Clearly, The Red Room has concerns of their own, or I wouldn't have received the e-mail that launched this whole thing of mine.
Causes Bob Mustin Supports
Native American culture. Education. Creative writing.