I seem to have collected lots of links this month. It’s been a long, long month!
What’s in store for 2012 in M/M romance?
Sharita Lira makes some predictions.
In defense of women
Heidi Belleau talks about women writers in m/m fiction.
Quote: “And that’s just two of a million possible explanations or reasons, some good and some troublesome. We’re a varied group, so being reductive and saying all women do X for Y reasons is inaccurate at best and offensive at worst.”
Why does Hollywood hate gay sex?
M/M on the screen not the page – where is it? Oh and for the sake of your sanity, stay away from the comments sections
The Inkpunks advise you to write a bad book.
All about giving yourself permission not to be perfect.
Quote: “Writing is for some reason the only art form in which we expect our very first effort to be successful. No painter expects his first painting to end up in a museum, no sculptor expects his first pot to sell for thousands of dollars, and yet writers, we always think here’s my first novel, I’m done, give me a contract and make me famous.” – Dan Wells
Jordan Castillo Price on re-releases
JCP discusses the increasingly common practice of authors re-releasing books where the rights have reverted to them.
25 things writers should stop doing
Shooting from the hip advice telling you to stop sabotaging yourself.
Don’t eat the butt – Lies that can poison our writing career
And in a similar vein to 25 things, the first of a series of posts about “the toxic beliefs that can KILL a writing career” starting with “I’m not a real writer until I have a finished manuscript, landed an agent, am traditionally published, am selling books, have spent my retirement funds earning an MFA in Creative Writing.”
Quote: “The title is not something we earn it is who we are. Our title defines our level of commitment. No other entrepreneurial profession waits for success or outside validation before they feel comfortable using a professional title.”
The Builders and the Wreckers
Sarah A Hoyt advises you how to spot and defend yourself from those who’ll tear you down while saying they’re trying to help. Long, but worth it!
Quote: “These are people who were brought up thinking they were creative geniuses. They have tried to be creative, have fallen short of their own ideals and want to – no, need to – tear down anything else anyone else builds, to salve the gaping wound in their ego and self esteem.”
Can critique groups do more harm than good?
There are more potential problems than just the “wreckers” described above at a critique group.
Setting goals for your writing.
This is so close to how I set my goals I had to check I didn’t write this. But it’s Andrew Grey, who’s produced an awesome amount of writing this way.
Quote: “…keep your goals to things you can control, that way you’re more likely to succeed.”
Contests Good, Bad or Ugly?
Discussion by Ginger Simpson of the value of writing/book polls and awards.
25 things writers should start doing
Because it’s no good just telling us what not to do!
Quote: “Give your work the due it deserves. If someone asks what you’re doing? Don’t tell them you’re writing. Don’t say you’re telling stories or penning the Great American Novel. Tell them, “I’m working. I’m down in the word mines breaking my brain to bring this ink into the world. Now shut the door and get me a quad-shot espresso.” Don’t just put your nose against the grindstone: rub your entire naked body against the grindstone.”
About Pen Names
Cassandra Carr discusses the minefield-littered area of pen names.
Learning Every Day
Maisey Yates on how it’s okay not to have it all figured out.
Quote: “I say this because I think it’s important for people to know I don’t have all mah crap together. Not even close.”
Books, reading and reviewing
Humans are hardwired to read books
According to psychologists from Washington University.
Quote: “If reading were to decline significantly, it would change the very nature of our species.”
Why do romance novels continue to be met with disdain?
Maisey Yates discusses why romance and other fiction mostly produced by and for women is so often dismissed.
Quote: “Is reading a thriller adrenaline porn? Do action movies give men unrealistic expectations of getting into a car chase? I don’t think so.”
An Open Letter to Those Who Review on Goodreads
Goodreads has been somewhat fraught lately. This open letter is an apology from a writer to reviewers. Thought provoking.
Quote: “If we can’t stand Goodreads, we shouldn’t go there. But if we choose to anyway, it is fucking ridiculous of us to think that just because we get those sexy author profile pages Goodreads is suddenly our space to be assholes to people who are doing what Goodreads was made for: reviewing books and interacting with people who love (and hate) books as much as they do.”
Enough is Enough. Authors Need to Chill Out and Not Respond to Reviews
And more discussion of recent kerfuffles on Goodreads. That place is turning into a battleground!
The Reader Author Paradigm
Dear Author blog’s Jane adds more thoughts on the reviews issue and Goodreads kerfuffles.
Quote: “But one constant remains: book reviews are not the same as a workplace performance evaluation. They are not even meant for authors. Reviews are for readers. This needs to be our mantra.”
The “citizen-journalist” and the e-book piracy fallacy
Aleksandr Voinov weighs in on ebook piracy.
Sci-fi is for women too
JL_Hilton talks about this on the Carina press blog and I’m certainly not going to argue with that assertion!
The Dreaded Three Stars
Reviewer Jenre discusses how to upset a writer by saying you like their book. Sort of.
Quote: “Different people have different ideas about what constitutes a three star rating. Good Reads criteria is ‘I liked it’, which if you think about it is actually a decent description for a book. I think many authors should be pleased to know that their book was liked.”
Submitting, Querying and Publishing and other insanity-inducing activities
Don’t be cute. Don’t be creative. Be professional.
Straightforward advice about how to format your MS so that basically you don’t look like an idiot trying too hard.
Editors Passed on Same Book Critique Group Loved: 6 Reasons Why
The gap between what your critique groups loves and what an editor will love.
A Dozen+ Reasons Books are Rejected by Agents & Editors, and Set Aside by Readers
Lots of basic mistakes to watch out for. One I definitely need to learn to watch out for and keep having to fix:
Quote: “15. Story starts too quickly. This brings us full circle, back to the opposite of (1), the story starting too slowly. We, as readers, do need a little time to get to know the characters so we can care about what happens to them.”
Five attitude toward publishing you should avoid
Wise words from Jane Freidman on Writer Unboxed blog
Quote: “Sometimes writers express sentiments that make me want to issue a red-flag warning: STOP. You are about to hurt yourself. Here are five of the biggest ones.”
Just for laughs
Diary of an Author – Day 1
Funniest “diary” since The Very Secret one.
Quote: “Checked rankings on Amazon. Called my mother and cried. She said something about my aunt’s tumor getting worse. Thanks for caring about MY problems, MOTHER!”
Know your tall ships. (video – doesn’t autoplay!)
For those of us who like to read a bit of Age of Sail but don’t know the bobstay from the spanker boom, a fun little cartoon that explains the different rigs of different types of ships.
Quote: “Resolution #7: On the orders of Head Office I will encourage the belief in Intelligent Design, because it upsets everyone.”
February is Higher Ground month on my blog, leading up to the release on 28th. After that I’m moving the links post to the first weekend of the month, so next links will be 3rd or 4th of March. You might have managed to read this lot by then! Phew!