Thursday, April 19, 2012

Quark! Rules of Acquisition for Authors

"Welcome to my home. Please leave your entry fees and insurance waiver in the box provided, and remember, my house is my house as are its contents."

According to the Ferengi rule of acquisition number 284, "deep down, everyone is a Ferengi." It's always been my favorite rule. While I break most of the societal restrictions by wearing clothes, talking to strangers, and refusing to chew my children's food, I do enjoy Ferengi culture. I own a copy of the Rules, and I know a few of them by heart. I even had a drink once at Quark's in Vegas. It was heavenly.

So today I thought we'd have a fun topic, in honor of Quark, and talk about a few of the rules of acquisition that might apply to authors, either as they stand, or with a small tweak. We'll just cover my favorites, but if you're interested, a very good, nearly complete list of the "rules" can be found here.

#3 Never pay more for an acquisition than you have to. 
This one is pretty self explanatory, but I'd add for authors: never pay more for a service than you have to and never pay for someone else to do what you can do yourself for free.

#7 Keep your ears open.

#8 Small print leads to large risk

#13 Anything worth doing is worth doing for money.

#19 Satisfaction is not guaranteed. (on your part or your readers'!)

#44 Never confuse wisdom with luck.

#45 Expand or die

#48 The bigger the smile, the sharper the knife

#57 Good customers are as rare as latinum -- treasure them. (substitute loyal readers for good customers--though they may be the same thing in the end)

#82 The flimsier the product, the higher the price

#162 Even in the worst of times someone turns a profit. ( for the "doomed industry" folks) 

#194 It's always good business to know about new customers before they walk in the door.

#236 You can't buy fate.

#284 Deep down, everyone is a Ferengi (my favorite)

So. Thats a fair sample. I left out the real gems like "always sleep with the boss" and "females and profit don't mix" for obvious reasons. Though, I do like, "dignity and an empty sack is worth the sack," quite a lot. I hope they made you chuckle, and if you can stand the company of Ferengi, I'll see you at Quarks for a Samarian Sunset.

~ Frances


Vero said...

I'm a huge Star Trek Deep Space Nine fan, so you had me at Quark! :)

Indeed, the Rules of Acquisition apply very well to writing. Great choice of a topic for the Q post.

May I add another?

89. Ask not what your profits can do for you, but what you can do for your profits.

More writers should ask themselves what they can do for their readers, and not the other way around.

Thank you for a delightful surprise, Frances!

Frances Pauli said...

Oh, you can quote the rules!

Yes, #89 is very appropriate. A very nice addition. Thanks so much for coming by. What an awesome treat to find another DS9 fan. Of all the incarnations of Trek, that one is my favorite.
I just loved the rich culture and longer story threads that were possible with a permanent setting rather than flitting from one encounter to another.

Of course, all Star Trek is good in my book. But like the rule says, deep down....

Jaleta Clegg said...

We're all mercenary at heart.

One of these years, I'm going to have to watch DS9 all the way through...

Frances Pauli said...

The final few seasons with the Cardassian war are some of the best ST TV ever, in my opinion. I loved the rebel Cardassian leader, Damar.

Great story all around on DS9. The episodes with Moogie are some of my favorites. She's such a rebel.

Go Moogie.
"your mother won't chew your food. Your mother talks to strangers."

Gina said...

I didn't even know what Ferengi was before I googled it just now, but those rules are ones to abide by. Thanks!

From Diary of a Writer in Progress

Vero said...

I want my Moogie!!

Gosh, Frances, reminding me of Moogie --- and BRUNT, FCA (oh gawd I loved him!) ---totally made my day! :D

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