Archive | August 2008

One thing leads to another

One of the truely enjoyable things about the Internet is that stuff links.  Unfortunately, this is also the best way to spent lots of time on the ‘Net (not writing), but there’s a good article on Wired: “How to Get Published and Avoid Alien Bloodsuckers“.  (Blood being a touch more of a metaphore, and one only wishes they were alien, and not a pretty typical get-ahead human.)  But the good stuff is the mention of Yog’s Law, which is posted on SFF: Money Flows Toward the Writer.  This is a good thing to remember, and it is interesting that good advice often seems to come in small words.

From here you can get to SFWA’s Writing FAQs, with lots of good basic info. Now, it amazes me with all this good info — easily Googled, another way to spend hours tripping down the WWW garden paths — that folks don’t know or find this stuff out.  Is it fear that keeps people from poking around?  Or perhaps that blank stare that often hits when all those pages and pages of possible links show up on Google (and did they ever do a study to find out just how many links they could put on that first page without really freakng someone out?).

Ypulse’s book blog is another good source of info, and links off to a list of 100 books most often found on top 100 lists.   (There’s something very circular about that reasoning, but, oh well.)  I’ve read 26 of them, which goes to show my top 100 are not here — and why are so many of these books so old?  Does this mean it takes time for a book to show up in top 100′s?  Or is it that so many of these books are on reading lists in English classes in every English speaking country, and thus get put here?  Or, is it that these lists are generated by critics, not readers, and therefore are highly suspect, just because you have to worry when someone tells you to read a book, unless that someone is a best friend who is also pushing the paperback your way.

Nevermind that, however, since I have new books found, and already treasured.  Deanna Raybourn, Silent in the Grave, and Silent in the Sanctuary, and I so want to spell her last name with an ‘e’ tucked in there (for not particular good reason, other than it feels like it ought to be there).  She’s on my top 100 (currently, I’m always hoping for a new book to come along and bump off the old).  And she has a link to cool, goth photos by Simon Marsden, (and his name is spelled as it ought to be), and I’ve already ordered as cards.  Because you really do never know what one thing will lead to another thing.

Writers Talking

Third day of a writers’ conference and I’m ready to go home.  I’ve also come back to the same conclusions I always reach–writers are better at writing than talking.  It’s not so much that too much talk of writing and my eyes glaze.  Love to talk plot, character, technique, structure.  It’s fun to listen, too–sure is easier to talk than to do.  But, the business stuff–that’s where my eyes glaze.  These conferences always remind me I don’t care about the business stuff–that’s not why I started writing.  I like writing.  I like writers.  The rest of it–well, it’s necessary, but not exciting, and I can’t do without it, but I sure as hell don’t have to talk about it any more than necessary.

Third day and I also want my bad habits back.  I’m ready for sweat pants and my dogs and meals that are just snacks pulled out of the fridge.  I’m ready for a writing binge so I don’t have to talk about it.  Some times I do wonder if, as writers, we should talk less, and just keep the keyboard humming.