I am writing this cutting close to the wire again.
I have had a busy day editing a fairy tale down to under 1500 words for a competition. I don’t write fairy tales so it was a good stretch for me to study up on the genre...i.e. pull out the reference fairytale books my kids own... and work out how to put a fairytale in a New Zealand setting. I enjoyed it. I like to work with a few constraints because then you have to be more creative as you try to stetch them....
Writing to under 1500 words for this competition has challenged all the kiwi children’s writers and there now seems to be an unofficial competition going on for who has the most words under 1500. I got mine down to 1493 and was pretty pleased with my effort, however another member of the FaBo team got his to 1499. It is all good practice for us as the Fabo team is limbering up and ready to charge into FaBo Olympics. We are just putting everything in place and then we get the starters gun on 16th July.
Around the blogoshere this week there have been some interesting tech developments. Microsoft launched their new tablet, Surface and things looked pretty nifty...Windows 8 operating system, direct price comparison with iPad, ships in November.
Today Google launched into the Tablet world with Nexus, voice operated, android system, direct price comparison with Kindle Fire, ships next week. Hmm the Tablet war heats up...Google threw in new tech virtual reality glasses to everybody at the launch...and these glasses record what you are seeing as people watching were treated to sky divers wearing them and streaming images of their jump in real time back to them.
Joe Wikert put out an interesting idea this week with his comment piece, Let’s open a ebook store. He challenges publishers to open an ebook store on their websites DRM free. If retailers can print books (think book espresso) why can’t publishers sell from their own site...there may be a few snags.
Mike Shatzkin has been thinking along the same lines and he is positive that Publishers who don’t figure this out will be has-beens in two years. And he is talking about the big six. Check out his opinion and get a heads up to the next big changes in publishing.
Kristin Lamb has been taking a hard look at Facebook and the changes they keep slipping by us, one of them holding your fan pages hostage...hmm. Why are they doing this and are they killing their own golden goose?
A lot of people are commenting on Jane Friedman’s blog with a guest post by Ed Cyzewski on self publishing being a tragic term...he has a different take. It takes a community to publish a book.
Joel is also reading from a similar page with his 6 things I love and hate about self publishing.
John Scalzi had his latest book Redshirts hit the New York Times Bestseller list.
In this entertaining piece he examines all the factors that contributed to this success or not. Not what you think...Take a look!
In the craft section
3 Tips for writing heavy emotional scenes from Jami Gold.
How to spot Mary Sue in your writing (that’s the character whom you agree with all the time)
World building is Martina Boones great guest post on Harry Potter For Writers
Bubblecow has a tip packed post on Book proposals, synopsis etcetc...worth bookmarking.
In the more eclectic section, Writing with both sides of the brain...thoughtful post looking at whole self writing.
Jody Hedlund has 20 ways readers can help you...worth passing on to your readers
Also today Mark Coker of Smashwords tweeted his announcement that Smashwords is partnering with the Califa Library system in California. Yup you can go to their libraries read topselling ebooks and buy them on the library site. This is putting the power back into libraries...an interesting development to watch in the coming year.