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Raging Reader Round-up (08/05/11)

Maybe I should just officially change the date for this to Sunday. ūüėĄ

1.  Is responding to a review ever a good idea?

2.¬† Are you happy when you’re not writing?

3.  Epic Fantasy is what?

4.  Things You Should Learn From Writing

5.  How Selling a Book Really Is

6.¬† FanFic is fun, whether you’re writing it or arguing about it.

7.  How Good Writing Can Still Make a Bad Book

8.  Starting a Book?  It Might Help to Know the Endgame

9.¬† Your Agent Rocks, but¬†She Isn’t Wonder Woman

10.¬† If I Had a Jam Jar as Big as #8, I’d probably go ahead and fill a swimming pool with jam. ūüôā

11.  If you wanna get a record deal, you gotta do coke.

12.¬† Distractions, baby.¬† I love ’em.

13.  How Do You Feel the World?

14.¬† Writers and readers are characters, too.¬† Don’t let anyone tell you they aren’t.

15.  Why One Character is Never Enough

16.  Revise, Rinse, and Repeat

17.¬† Good descriptions, but I’ve never been a fan of mixing genres and age categories.

18.¬† Samuel’s Real Skinny on Self-Publishing

19.  A Path to Publishing with Bookends, LLC

20.¬† Life doesn’t happen to us, we happen to life.¬† And it isn’t always pretty.

21.  Sex, Genetic Determinism, and James Tiptree Jr

22.¬† Men read romance, too.¬† Considering her blog, I’m considering buying this book.¬† Internet marketing works, people.

23.¬† If only¬†SFF authors wrote posts like this, they would sell a lot more books. ūüėČ

24.¬† Still don’t like it.

25.¬† I love my state. ūüėÄ

26.  More bullshit about social networking.

27.  Literary writing is still literary.

28.¬† Young authors are great, and I’d love to see more.¬† But old folks still got game.

29.  Chick lit is still lit people.  Deal with it.

30.¬† How long will books and movies stay on their own sides of the line?¬† Alternate endings are…?

31.  Inciting incidents and authorial experience.  Do established authors get more slack?  Do they deserve to?

32.¬† Can you be a dummy and write YA?¬† That’s what the title of¬†a book by this lovely lady says.

33.  Writing Tips from a Dark Future.

34.  Short Story Submission

35.  A link to a list of Marketing Links I stole from Sierra Godfrey.

36.  Short stories are not novels, Mr. Martin.  But otherwise good advice.

37.  Other authors are awesome, but you are, too.

38.¬† Never say that hard work doesn’t get you anywhere.

39.  Push some paper, publishers.  We know you can do it.

I never set out to be an aggregator blog, but it’s almost all I can do to keep up with these round-ups in-between the cracks of “real life.”¬† That will change eventually, I hope, once my schedule settles down.¬† Hope y’all find this links useful in the mean-time.

 
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Posted by on August 8, 2011 in atsiko, Raging Reader Round-up

 

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Raging Reader Round-up Part 2 (07/29/11)

17.  What You Can Learn from the Submissions Process

18.  You Can Get Back in the Game

19.  Cons, Panels, and Big Names vs. You

20.  How Not To Prop an Agent

21.¬† What Readers Want/What Blog Readers Want.¬† Reaching A Broader Blog Audience.¬† Why Writing Blogs Don’t Help Writers, or do they?

22.¬† I don’t know if pets are people, too; but we can certainly learn people-related lessons from them.

23.  People-watching ans Story Inspiration

24.  More on Self-publishing.  And more.

25.  More on the Digital Transformation

26.  How To Handle a Critique

27.  Writers are Hypochondriacs

28.¬† Conlangs are one of my favorite topics.¬† For a long time, I’ve considered building a language on the blog, posting once a week.¬† Unfortunately, the incredibly awesome¬†Chris Doty over on the Clarion Foundation blog beat me to it.

29.  Jim Butcher on Writing over at Clarion Foundation

32.  Selling Books is Not a Bonus

33.  I have a book problem.  Thankfully, I am not alone.

34.  Social media has become a powerful force.  Even anonymous social media.  Like FML.  Or LikeALittle, which allows users to flirt anonymously.  Own your flirts, people.  Or better yet, just walk up to him and say something!

35.  Maintaining Tension Makes Better Books

36.  Contemporary Fiction is Not Boring

37.  How To Keep Your Short Stories Short by Lydia Sharp

38.  Unfinished Manuscripts Can Be Avoided

39.  Plotting, Pansting, and Writing Rituals

40.  Fast Writing and Writing Software

41.  What Do Yoour Books Say About You?

42.  More on Branding

43.¬† I’ve resisted¬†using writing software for so long.¬† I’ve tried a few programs, and they always seemed more stifling than supportive.¬† But I keep hearing authors singing the praises of Scrivener.¬† I might have to give it a shot.

44.¬† More Agents As Publishers¬† Something I’m still on the fence about, assuming there are safeguards involved.

45.¬† Murphy’s Law of Agenting

46.¬† Anecdotes aren’t evidence, and reviews aren’t sales.

47.  Genres are descriptions.

48.  Emotional Truth in Fiction

49.  Giving Your Reader a Happy Ending

50.  Five Ways to Improve Your Writing with Janice Hardy

51.¬† How To Keep Up Online.¬† Ironically, it mentions the value of round-up posts. ūüėČ

52.  Choosing Narrative Distance

53.  What Juliette Wade Looks For in Critique Partners

54.  Making Your Characters Cry Is Not Enough

55.  Start With A World or Start With A Story?

56.  Levels of Revision

Whenever I’ve read blogging round-ups in the past, they’ve always been relatively short.¬† Maybe 15 or 20 links at the most.¬† When I look at my two round-up posts, 32 and 56 links respectively, I can’t understand why there’s such a difference.¬† I’ve mentioned before that I read a lot of posts a week.¬† Usually 200 or more.¬† That’s from about 30 or 40 blogs.¬† Which means about 4-5 posts a week¬†on average.¬† In fact, you’ll notice¬†if you go to all the links that I’ve linked to several blogs multiple times.¬† Because I have a bit of layman’s OCD, I read every single one of these posts.¬† I also do it because each of these blogs offers me something I can’t get from any of the other blogs I read.

And there are many more blogs out there that I don’t read.¬† But I assume many of them are blogs that could provide their own value to me.¬† I don’t think anyone will disagree that there’s a glut of blogs out there.¬† There are probably more blogs that could provide value to a person than they could keep up with reading 24/7.¬†¬†¬† But are bloggers overloading their blogs with content?¬† Many blog readers are loyal, meaning they read posts even if they don’t end up giving value.¬† Does this do a disservice to blog¬†readers?¬† Could cutting down on the posts actually increase page views by giving readers more time to read a variety of blogs?¬† And finally, should a blogger be selfish and do whatever they can to increase their own pageviews, or is there a benefit to directiing some of that traffic somewhere else?

 
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Posted by on August 3, 2011 in atsiko, Raging Reader Round-up

 

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Raging Reader Round-up Part 1 (07/29/11)

I’m late, I know it!¬† But stuff was going down IRL.¬† Like¬†arm issues that are still making¬†large amounts of typing a bit painful.¬† So, here’s my belated round-up for last week:

1.  Not sure they put enough sugar in this lemonade.

2.  Still not sure about this whole agent as publisher thing, but at least the Knight Agency seems to have some safeguards in place.

3.  Fear is the mindkiller.

4.  Prologues, Again

5.  How to Break into Reading Fantasy

6.¬† Everything you have ever read in an “edgy”¬†YA book is just the tip of the iceberg.

7.  Being a published poet is hard.

8.¬† Follow the rules.¬† Writing is work.¬† You wouldn’t ignore the rules to apply for a scholarship or a research grant, why should queries be any different?

9.  How to Build a Villain by Jim Butcher

10.¬† Writing speed matters.¬† Writing is like a raffle.¬† The more entries you have in the hat, the better chance you’ll win the prize–in this case a fan of your work rather than a one-time reader.¬† And here’s how you can max out your wordcount.

11.¬† You Can’t Always Be the Star.

12.¬† A In this day and age, writers are often told they need a website, a blog, a twitter, a facebook, anything to connect to fans and find new readers.¬† But a lot of people aren’t seeing this for what it really is.¬† As an author, you are a product line, and like any product, you need to establish your brand.¬† If you start out writing Paranormal Romances, and seven books in you throw in a near-future syberpunk novel, it’s going to confuse your reader base.¬† Everything you do contributes to your brand, so make sure you keep on top of how it will affect your career.

13.  Nobody knows the numbers you need.

14.  Reading this article makes me realize I am screwed.  I love to write about future generations on the same world.  Damn.

15.  Notes on Writing

16.  Have You Met Your Blogging Goals?

There are only seventeen links here.¬† Why?¬† Because 211 posts to read through this week, with these sixteen being culled from the first 100.¬† Part 2 will be up tomorrow, likely with 16 more links from the second hundred posts.¬† There’s a reason for the ragin’.

 
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Posted by on August 2, 2011 in atsiko, Raging Reader Round-up

 

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Raging Reader Round-up (7/22/2011)

Because having to read 100 posts in a week to pick out the gems¬†makes me rage.¬† But now you won’t have to.

1. I wish I was a Lannister.

2. You have a million excuses.

3. You remember that awesome post I did on where writers get our ideas?  Well, it was a lie.  We really steal them from teenagers on the bus.

4.  You know that theory about how every choice we make creates a branch in the timeline?  Well, it would certainly explain all the contradictory posts about the future of publishing.

5. Neil Gaiman’s Guide to Writing

6. If you don’t love agents, they won’t love you.

7. Bad Pick-up Lines for Snagging an Agent.  And worse ones.  Also, drunken beagles?

8. Alien planets are great.¬† But how ’bout something a little more exotic?

9. Why you might not wanna leave a drawer full of crap for relatives to find.

10. Don’t trust the word “average” in publishing too much…

11. Even being a published writer these days can suck.¬† Especially if your agent thinks they should be your publisher, too.¬†¬†That’ll probably look something like this.¬† At least not everyone is doing it.¬† And agents and¬†editors are out to get you, or at least, the people they work for are.¬† That said, if you do get an editor, you can be pretty sure they love your book.¬† ¬† Of course, even if your publisher is still your publisher, you might find your contract amended automatically¬†by e-mail.¬† And it’s more than one publisher.¬† Which might be good or bad for you as an individual, but says a lot about how well publishers are treating their authors.¬† Not much of it good. The book industry is in more trouble than you though, huh?¬† And the booksellers are in worse.¬†¬† But we can save it!

12. The above links talk a lot about how writers should know the business side as well.  Tawna Fenske prefers not to.  What about you?

13.  The first week of sales matters.  You probably knew that.  Did you this?

14. Is your character boring?¬† Passive?¬† Perhaps even a bit wimpy?¬† That’s okay.¬† YA Historical Fiction author Katy Longshore has devised an 8-Step Program for Crappy Characters.¬† You can save everybody.

15.  Motivation is important.  But just how obvious should you be about it?  Janice Hardy has some suggestions.

16.¬† Establishing your character’s, er… character, is very important.¬† But studies show that circumstances can have a much more powerful effect on behavior than your underlying personality.¬† Janice Hardy has some tips on how to incorporate this into your stories.

17. The Intern (is she really an intern, still?) dissects a book that readers couldn’t put down:¬† Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins.¬† And goes on to explain how it’s like a video game, and why that makes it so appealing.¬† Being a gamer myself, I have to agree with most of her analysis.

18. The first thirty pages of your novel are probably boring.¬† Cut ’em.

19. What to do when an agent says no to your new project

20. How to Manage Your TIme as a Writer by Mindy Klasky.

21.¬† When you’re a fantas or science fiction writer, you often deal with world-building, and creating new cultures.¬† One way to make this easier is to learn ore about cultures on Earth.¬† Here are some interesting stories from Juliette Wade.

22. An interesting discussion on the origins of various cultural structures and metaphors courtesy of Google + Hangouts.

23. How cosplaying can teach us about world-building.¬† You know who you can ask about various types of clothing in different historical periods, or just about clothing in general?¬† Cosplayers.¬† Just because they may happen to be dressed up as pichu in high heels, that doesn’t mean they won’t know how to cut a Japanese yukata, or how to sew a Fauntleroy suit.¬† The take-away:¬† Even the craziest hobbies have unexpected value.

24. Is language completely arbitrary?  Many studies say not.  And you can use that in your writing and your world-building.

25. On the construction of story endings and tying shit up.

26.¬† On hooking.¬† Because all the best writers are doing it. ūüėČ

27.¬† Kids are the future, and they know it.¬† So how come you don’t hear about it much in YA?

28.  Lots of cons and conferences tout manuscript evaluations as a feature.  John Gilstrap over at The Kill Zone give us his Ten Rules for Manuscript Evaluation and how to get the most out of it.

29.¬† Meg Gardiner on drafting a novel.¬† No lie, brainstorming is the best part.¬† Writing the thing out¬†is… somewhere in the top 10.

30.  Kathleen Pickering on on-site reasearch.

31.  What typos cost you. Courtesy of the NYT.

32. Three Ways to Publish from Anne R. Allen.¬† Of course, there are more than three ways to publish.¬† Plenty of folks are successful with web serializations.¬† I’m gonna be publishing a manga a page at a time on Deviant Art.¬† But Anne does tackle the three main methods of publishing a book-length work.

33. Jennifer Archer on selling her debut novel. Three times. ūüôā

34.  Genre vs. Literary: Why the hate?  Thanks, Roni.

35. Best-selling vs. Best-writing from Meghan Ward.

36. Making Old Thoughts New Again

You know how I mentioned I read over 100 posts this week?¬† That was a lie.¬† That’s just the number in my blog reader.¬† But blogs love to link, and I can’t help but follow.¬† It was really something like 200.¬† Which may explain my lack¬†of novel-writing this week. ūüėĄ

So why only 36 points?¬† Well, keep in mind that some of them had more than 1 post.¬† And some of the posts just weren’t worth passing on.¬† Just be glad I read those ones¬†for you. ūüėČ

 
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Posted by on July 23, 2011 in atsiko, Raging Reader Round-up

 

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