Thursday, April 25, 2013

Feeling The Emotion

ANZAC day* is always emotional. Whether you are braving the chilly dawn for the memorial service or later in the day at a full civic ceremony...there is always the tear in the eye, the tight feeling in your throat. On this day I think of all the members of my family who served in their different wars and are still serving. The one who didn’t come back in 1916, age 23 with no known grave...his brother, my grandfather who did. My husband’s grandfather, one of less than 200 that survived Gallipoli and the Western Front. ANZAC day is always harder when one of our family is overseas serving as a Peacekeeper.
When we were overseas last year, we met a Turk on a train in Italy. It was a special moment as we both talked about the war that forged our two nations. Each of us had a story to tell about visiting Gallipoli and crying. He talked about seeing a fused piece of metal, the result of 25 bullets that all hit together at once.
What a hell it must have been!

In the blogosphere this week a different kind of war was happening as reaction to Barry Eisler’s keynote address to the Pikes Peak writer’s conference was furiously debated on Twitter. Agents and Publishers taking exception to Barry’s comments that Legacy publishing was a lottery and their only value was for print distribution deals. Once the hot comments were out of the way and agents and publishers climbed down off the ceiling...debate was more constructive. Read the comments people...but give yourself some time...

In the last year very successful indie e-publishers have begun partnering with big publishers for print only deals and agents are becoming publishers on the side, organising editing, covers and marketing of eBooks or is pretty easy to see Barry Eisler’s point.

The London Book Fair has just wrapped up and there was lively debate around the changing nature of agents. So do you want a manager, a partner, a business coach...or a deal maker? And No an Agent is not necessarily going to do all of that.

Joanna Penn was also thrilled to be at the Fair. She has a huge blog post filled with video interviews and comments about the 2013 Fair, which had the most writers attend ever. Take some time over this one.

Joel Friedlander talks about his war on Word won...and what he is doing about it. Check it out and get a great deal on his solution!

Seven Steps To The Perfect Story is one of those amazing graphics that you really want to print out, stick on your wall and gaze at for a long time.

Myths about Query letters to Agents...don’t get too worried.

Elizabeth Spann Craig has been looking at Audio books and ACX. This is a feel good post telling you how to use ACX.

In Craft, It is all about Character Emotion...
Real Life Diagnostics- Hooking The Reader- Janice Hardy dissects a submission.
Dropping into the Emotion Thesaurus, it’s all about sarcasm....

To Finish,
Roz Morris talks about Obituaries and why they are so important for writers...


*ANZAC Australian and New Zealand Army Corps remember their fallen soldiers on 25th April the date of the landing of the Corps at Gallipoli in Turkey 1915. New Zealand lost ¼ of their men and more than ½ were severely wounded. The Turks lost twice as many allied casualties and their leader Ataturk Kemal became the Father of Modern Turkey. After a disastrous nine months the Allies left the peninsular in the dead of night leaving behind more than 44000 dead to lie with 87000 dead Turks. New Zealand suffered the largest casualties relative to their population of any Allied Nation and the campaign changed forever both Turkey, who won, and Australia and New Zealand, who lost but found and forged their own national identities away from Britain.

I saw Dire Straits perform this live when I was never fails to remind me of the loss and weariness of war and the need for Peace.

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Finding The Plot

Paulo Coelho is credited with saying,
'There are only 4 stories...a love story between 2 people, a love story between 3 people, the struggle for power and the voyage.'

I am reflecting on this statement, which really pares back plot, and thinking about where the story swirling around in my head fits.

Several of my friends have finished big creative projects and they are in that flat space between ideas. (hey guys, how about combining all of those...)

Recently I heard a well established fiction writer say that he gets all his ideas from non fiction and that is all he reads between his novels.

On Facebook we are joking with Brian Falkner, a friend of ours who writes excellent YA Science Fiction thrillers, about new discoveries last year in Science, Brian had already invented them as plot devices in his books. If he dreams it up suddenly it becomes reality.

Ideas, plots, conspiracy theories and character motivation all swirling around in the blogosphere this week.

Truth is Stranger than Fiction.

Susan Kaye Quinn is interviewed on her new series...which began when she had one of those high concept ideas while traveling and she had to interview her own muse to find out what happens next.

Hugh Howey is being referenced all over the blogosphere again...this week it’s his three rules for writing...

Orna Ross looks at the Vanity Publishing vs Self Publishing. Are they the same? It is all about value.

The brilliant Joel Friedlander has added three new non fiction style templates to his fiction book design templates. If you are looking at POD check out what Joel is doing...very brilliant stuff.

M J Rose is looking at the book launch that happens when your books are not in the book store because of a dispute....Perfect is the Enemy of Good. Great post.
In the Craft section,
Great fiction goes for the guts- Kristen Lamb with a straight to the point  blog post.

In Marketing,
Pinterest for authors...Jane Friedman takes a look at how you can use this social media site.
Getting it up and keeping it up-The conundrum for Indie authors

To Finish,
Neil Gaiman has addressed publishers directly at the London Book Fair to tell them what he thinks they should be doing...making mistakes.

The publishers will probably think he has lost the plot.


Pic from DH Wright
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