THE LATEST NEWS
- A Twitter Celebration of PB/MG/YA Books released this year! I scoured this list not only to see what new books were coming, but also to find new authors to follow on twitter. (Be sure to say hello to @christinemarciniak and @pjhoover!)
- OMG, you must read this. A bookseller's recent experience buying books. What blows my mind? Just how many Dan Brown books they buy...and how little anything else they buy. Not to harp on about Twitter, but look at this:
Confronted with Othmer's book on the catalog page, I tried to see it in the best light possible. It's basically a book about advertising (sounds like a contemporary Mad Men) that is gunning for a general audience. Ron showed me two possible covers. One bizarrely featured a fried chicken leg, while the other showed the earth. I ordered five copies and prayed the chicken leg would go away. My guess is that without the personal interaction with Othmer on Twitter, I would have gagged on that chicken leg and moved on without bringing the book into the store.
- BEA Panel about YA lit--especially good for you spec fic peeps out there.
- An excellent interview with Neil Gaiman on writing, with a focus on his recent The Graveyard Book. Preview:
Kathy wrote: "Do you keep a notebook in which you jot down interesting ideas or thoughts whenever or wherever they come to you? "
I do. And I lose them. And then I find them again, and read things I've written and go "What a great idea. I have no memory of coming up with that at all. Brilliant."
- Poets & Writers keeps doing excellent interviews with editors. I may just have to subscribe to this magazine. Does anyone? Is it worth it? Preview from the interview:
Editing is more by-the-hip. You look at a text and ask yourself how it can be improved. One thing I have noticed is that when you're a younger editor, you're more intense about it. As you go along, you relax a little. More and more, I feel that the book is the author's. You give the author your thoughts and it's up to him or her to decide what to do.
STUFF TO READ FOR FUN
- Have you been reading Russet? It's the online (twitter) book being written 140 characters at a time by Kathleen Duey. Totally worthwhile.
- This book? Effing hilarious. It's British, it's one of the funniest YA books I've ever read...and it's free online for a short time. Go get it now!
- Just for fun! Go see if your character is a Mary Sue--also makes for a great checklist to avoid cliches.
- Go subscribe to Inky Girl's feed: she has great comics, and on-going blog posts with famous authors and how often they've been rejected.
- Wanna see some great writing? Check out this author's story of her own traveling pants.
- Wanna see some great poetry? Check out this author's funny poem on a superhero.
- You know you're from the South when you hear about Raccoon Penis Bones before the hip NY store does. Also: my father wants one for a toothpick. Also: why, yes, I do hail from them there Appalachain parts.
- An inspirational article about writing that's been circulating around my SCBWI listserv.
- Speaking of inspirational: Diana Peterfreund's post on never giving up. The circus is involved.
- And, oh yeah? This is about as inspirational as it gets. Seriously: read this one. It made me cry.
ON BOOKS & PUBLISHING
- A great article about the role of SF and YA's impact on it. It's short, but worth the read. Preview:
I think we’ve had to look at our sluggish beginnings in epic, and realize that two hundred pages of wandering around a castle before conflict appears may not be the best way to begin a story. We’ve had to become more creative in our worldbuilding, partially (I think) to compete with the elegance of YA competition.
- An editor with a linklist of other editors' blogs.
- A writer with a list of links of resources for writers.
- He agrees with me! Don't put all your writing dreams into one book. Also: PubRants agrees, too.
- Holt's Uncensored top 10 Reasons why your query got rejected. (Hint: don't suck.)
- Speaking of getting rejected: Here's Editor Torrent's (very interesting) post on what makes them turn down something. It's not your usual list of sound bites, peeps, so be sure to check this one out. (PS: It's in response to their "What Not to Edit" post.)
- So jealous: Some BEA attendees and book bloggers got a chance to tour Hachette Books.
- If you've not seen Shelli's post about how she landed an agent, be sure to! The short version: don't give up!
- Author's notes on a recent SCBWI conference. Preview:
Jill Corcoran added, “I’m seeing a lot of plot-driven manuscripts, but where the character isn’t fully developed.”
Emily van Beek chimed in with: “Remember that the world owes you nothing. You owe the world your best work.”
- If You Give a Girl a Pen's post on ways to keep tension on your pages. Boy, these girls are helpful: how to write a synopsis.
- Cheryl's got great ideas for apps for iPhones (and iTouches) that help writers.
- The Literary Lab did a series on genres a few weeks ago, about the time when I was drowning in work. If you didn't read them then, be sure to read them now in their archives. My favorite? Screaming Guppy's take on SF & Tess Hilmo on MG.
- *shudder* This is going to happen to me soon: Revising.