Showing posts with label Brainpickings. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Brainpickings. Show all posts

Thursday, June 29, 2017

Book Love

Where were you twenty years ago?
I was teaching and scribbling stories at night. We had just got internet and I found a great group of UK writers on a listserv. One night the discussion turned to word of mouth promotion.
‘There’s a great debut story just published, everyone is talking about,’ said one UK author. I went to my local specialist bookseller (who passed away recently,) While he was stacking on the counter the pile of books he thought I should read to my class, I asked him about this book, Harry and the stone... He put Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone on the pile saying- ‘my last book, it’s a good read.’ I finished it at 2am and started reading it to my class that day. 
It became the most talked about book in the playground. I was seeing in real time the power of good storytelling transporting children to another world. Teachers and parents would stop me and ask about the book that even the non readers were talking about.... 
That’s the holy grail of writing when the reader can’t bear to close the book. It has nothing to do with clever phrases or perfectly executed grammar. It grabs you by the throat and demands your attention. You can’t sit down to intentionally write a story like this. The magic can't be forced.
This week is the 20 year anniversary of the publication of Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone and Di Dickenson looks at the criticism leveled at the book series and asks is it justified.

Kris Rusch has her next post on discoverability. This weekshe looks at brand loyalty. This series is cracking along. Kris always gives you plenty to think about.

Brain Pickings has a great post on different styles of great writing. Are you an explainer, an elucidator or an enchanter? Which should you aim to be?

Orna Ross has been thinking about the underlying prejudice towards self publishers in the wake of the recent Byte The Book debate. Why is self publishing still seen as vanity publishing when the reality is very different. Is traditional publishing the new vanity?

R L Stedman has an interesting post on rights. Do you know all the different rights that you have in one piece of work? This is a great reference and eye opening for the new writer.

If you are an illustrator or know one, point them in the direction of this global award for illustration. Entries close in a few weeks and the prize is quite nice...

Jami Gold has been struggling with burnout. She writes an important article on writer self care.

A group of grad students have got together to pool their talents and set up a research group for writers to use. Check out their new weekly blog. If you need a grad student to do some research for you this could be a valuable resource.

Litreactor has an interesting blog on book reviews, specifically why they don’t look at 5 star reviews. This is a really interesting read about how important the 3 and 4 star reviews are to people looking for the next book to invest time in.

In The Craft Section,

4 reasons to outline your settings K M Weiland - Bookmark

Write better fiction- Killzone blog

Better book titles- April Davila- Bookmark

Check out Writing excuses podcast. This weeks episode –outlining

In The Marketing Section,

Getting book reviews- Book marketing tools

3 best practices for marketing- Kevin Tumlinson- Bookmark

To Finish,

I met a composer friend yesterday and I was lamenting that I couldn’t make up my mind on whether to take up the offer of a piano to replace our keyboard. It means moving some bookcases to make room. He laughed and noted that I could always put the books on top of the piano... win/win.
It’s not that I hoard books... um they are just good friends... all of them... (over 2000.) But I’m not a true hoarder. These famous people had much more extensive collections....


Pic: The first cover. Ours is a patchwork of spellotape holding it together... but nobody in the family wants a new edition. The magic is still in the old one.

If you want to get the best of my bookmarked links and other goodies you can subscribe to my monthly newsletter. Come and share the book love.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Genre Fiction; Up, Down, Sideways...

This week in the publishing blogosphere has been focussed on the continuing fallout over KOBO pulling self-published books featuring erotica... which caused booksellers sites to fall over including Whitcoulls our biggest chain bookseller which made news around the world.
The Alliance of Independent Authors comments about the damage done to authors and publishers on this... as a lot of the books pulled weren’t erotica... leaving 50 shades and Lolita untouched.
David Gaughren also asks who do we want making our moral decisions... as this all happened as a knee jerk reaction to an article in The Daily Mail. Lots of comments on this.

Porter Anderson continued his Ether this week with more snippets from Frankfurt and predictions for content (read stories) in the gaming industry ... the books of the future.

Writer Beware is highlighting Kill Clauses in contracts and the underhanded ways these are being used now... Check it out and be aware!

The great Brainpickings, Maria Popova’s site is 7 years old today and she looks back at 7 years since her idea and 7 things she has learned... a great little inspirational piece.

Jane Friedman has started up a magazine dedicated to writers. Scratch.  Her first issue is free so you can take a look at what she is doing and hoping for. If you don’t know Jane Friedman... she is consistently voted as one of the best writers advice/publishing commentators on the web.

McDonalds (New Publisher Alert) are giving out books to kids with their order... or you can go and download them yourselves. Yes...I told you it was coming ad now it is here... just not in NZ yet.

If you are thinking about getting into China you need to think about censorship...The NY Times details the hoops writers are prepared to go through.

Agents doing different things....
Lit Agent Mandy Hubbard is calling for a different kind of submission...She’s got a project in mind but she needs the writing voices...

Jill Corcoran is working with one of her writers using Kindle Singles and episode publishing a YA novel. 

Curtis Brown agent, Gordon Wise, has written an article on whether you need a print publisher now and ‘curated publishing services’ for authors that some agents are now doing....

In Craft,
NaNoWriMo is nearly upon us and the blogosphere is gearing up with articles on how to tackle the event. Here are two of the best this week.

In Marketing,
Joanna Penn talks about sharing your research with your readers... (Great article, something I have been mulling over.)

Ebook pricing is always a hot topic... Molly Greene talks about her experiences and what she has learned around this.

If you are self publishing, you need a team...Bob Mayer tells you why and how to choose them.

Website to check out,
Blake Snyder of Save The Cat (Screenwriting Bible) has a great website. This week a guest novelist shows how he used Save The Cat Beats to structure his novel...A great insight into plotting...while still leaving room for ‘as you write’ inspiration...Bookmark this one.

To Finish,
Chuck Wendig was recently in this part of the world... he left just as the fires started in OZ....hmmm. Chuck was a guest of GenreCon in Brisbane where he delivered a speech on 25 things he loves about Genre fiction.... Chuck is not for the faint hearted so warnings apply. You will laugh and maybe fall off your chair...



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