Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Leaving today....

Okay, so I'm flying by myself for the first time since 07, and some time tonight I will be in LA. Wish me luck!!!!!

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Let's Be Fair

Recently, I was at a conference that I feel sure a few self published writers attended. There were some comments made by an agent and a moderator about how unprofessional self publishing is, and how it's always been around but professional writers will always go the "real" way.

I feel for this post to matter I need to point out that I'm not self published, and that while it's tempting I'm not really sure I ever will be self published.

I do editing for people. I've edited for traditionally published writers, self published writers, and unpublished writers. Some of the stuff I've read has been really good, some not. I didn't say some of the stuff I receive from the traditionally published has been really good (though some of it has). I said some of the stuff I see is awesome, and some isn't.

If you jumped over with me from P-52, you probably know I also read. A lot. To date, most of what I've read (other than what I'm sent) has been traditionally published because I don't own an e-reader. My vision isn't great, and with no e-reader print is just the best option for me. You can't usually buy self published books in the store, and I don't shop online so in an industry controlled by a select few, most of what I read is traditionally published. And I have read some really bad traditionally published books. Last year I did 52 book reviews.  This year my goal was to review 30 books, and even though I've read way more than 30 books, I've reviewed a handful. I quit doing negative reviews. And while I always make an effort to give balanced reviews if my list of annoyances is longer than my love list I just won't review it. Now having read more than 30 books and only having reviewed five, I'm sure you can guess that I read more than one traditionally published book I didn't feel okay reviewing. But it gets more complicated than that. I read a book that was expected to do fairly well. It jumped from first person to third person for whole sections with no warning it would do so and the sections had no rhyme or reason. It felt like the writer needed to convey something mc couldn't know, so she'd just jump heads. Wow. I went to another signing where the writer got confused by their own writing! I never talk about these things on my blog. I'm not out to insult anyone, or their work. And I'm not out to make enemies. But lots of book bloggers also write. And lots of writers know that they can't be too harsh about a book that may have really had some things wrong with, because they may need to work with that editor.  And so traditionally published books, that I have to pay $15-$20 for may not be fairly reviewed. While on the flip-side, a self published book that you usually pay less than $8 and often less than $3 for is overly criticized, because the notion is it must be bad or it would have been traditionally published. The reviewer opens it with the expectation of mistakes, and when you look for something, you usually find it. Not to mention the reviewer probably won't have to work with the editor in the future.

I'd also like to point out that not all books are self published because they couldn't be traditionally published. There are many good reasons to self publish. I have a fairly complex YA ms out right now. Some people like it. Some don't. But some people would like to see it altered in a way that will make integral changes to the story. I'm not sure I'm okay with that. And I know there are some things about the book that I will not change, not even if it means keeping it on my hard drive. I have respect for a writer who chooses to self publish and be true to the story they wrote, over rewriting for one person. Sorry, I just do. (I need to say I'm not advocating no one ever make revisions. That's not what I mean, but I think there comes a time when you as the artist know when something is too far from your vision to work).

I'd like to see changes in the blogosphere reflect changes in the industry. I really do think it's okay to be critical of the self published as long as you review the traditionally published by the same standard. And I'd like to see writer/blogger circles move away from the view that the self published couldn't otherwise be published.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Waiting On Wed. The Iron Knight

I think I posted this one before the cover was out, but I like it so I'm posting it again. And I technically already have it as a galley and am loving it, but I can't read it on my comp, so I'm still waiting.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Tipsy Tuesday

You know the game. I leave a word in bold. You type the first word that comes to mind. The next commenter will type the first word your word made them think of. This will go on until Wed. ;)


Sunday, August 21, 2011

Changes in the Industry

There has been a lot of talk lately about how this industry we all love or love to hate (whatever the case may be) is changing for the first time. That's true in part. It is changing; it's just not the first time. And I think we'd be fools to think that it will be the last time.

Once upon a time, in a land far far away, books were printed in installments, like magazine sometimes even included in something else, even more like a magazine. They were distributed in London and crossed an ocean to the new world. Readers (the few and proud) made a mad dash for the latest installments. It was the pre-television soap opera. It carried a message. It was artistic. It became a classic...IT WAS WRITTEN AS ENTERTAINMENT.

Times changed. The industry caught up with the rest of the world, evolved. With other forms of entertainment becoming accessible and popular and the reading population larger, installments weren't a good option. Today, we like our books bound, preferably in one casing to be completed at our earliest convenience. (This is also the reason classics have a tendency to feel entirely too long and overly descriptive; the repetition once served as a reminder of the last installment).

But what we consider the modern novel has been around for a while. And society like technology has continued to change. Today, we live on phones that are basically hand held computers. We chat in sound bites of exactly 140 characters, and the publishing industry once again must catch up. Agents are now representing self published. Harry Potter has gone digital, and 30% of books sold are e-readers. So the industry will change. True, change is hard, but life will go on like always. And really, change can be good.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Wed. & Writing: You Tell Me

It's kind of ironic because not too long ago I posted conference tips, but i'm just a bundle of nerves. I guess there isn't much to be nervous about since there are no pitch sessions. But I feel like this conference is so important, some kind of opportunity or something. I guess, in truth, I know that this is a networking event, and that networking is not my strong suit. Don't get me wrong. I'm a friendly person and I love meeting people. But most of the time I'm too shy to just approach people. I've learned to use my bookmark as a tool. I feel better talking to strangers if I can give them something, like somehow my 40 cent bookmark will make them want to talk to me. LOL. And to make matters worse, I'm kind of awkward. Like I don't say the right things at the right times. In the blogosphere I can. It's easier. I prefer to write than talk anyhow, and I can see what my response looks like before I send it. Does anyone have any suggestions?

Monday, August 1, 2011

Tipsy Tuesday

Here's how the game goes: I put a word in bold. Commenter #1 types the first word they think of. #2 types the first word #1 made them think of and so forth and so on.