Hi all. Today I wrote an article comparing characters to drinks, left the stove top on for a good half hour or so, and forgot about my dinner halfway through eating it. And no, it wasn’t that bad.
In short, my brain is going WIBBLE WIBBLE WIBBLE today. Let’s do this.
1. The Dragon Awards are open until the 19th of this month if anyone fancies voting on some SFF awards.
2. Book reviews and other book recommendations!
UNSUB (Unsub #1), by Meg Gardiner – Space and Sorcery is a fun sounding mystery; anything like Criminal Minds only with less gore is a good pitch to me.
Book Review: City of Saints and Madmen – Writings of a Doomscribe is also a good pitch for my tastes, in that it sounds engagingly totally off its rocker.
I Spy With My Little Eye 9 Fantasy Books About Spies is a good article in my book as I like fantasy and I like spies. So, I’ll be having a careful check out of some of these ideas.
FanFiAddict’s Top 5 Reads of 2021 (So Far) – FanFiAddict – A Bookish Blog is exactly what is says on the tin except for the fact somebody there can’t count. If you know a robot whose maths circuitry has gone haywire, heap opprobrium on him. Boo! Boo Bender!
Finally, A Flight of Broken Wings (The Aeriel Chronicles #1) by Nupur Chowdhury – Review – Maya’s Reviews grabbed my attention as a book that’s been on my radar for a while. I’ve enjoyed the small snippets of Chowdhury’s prose I’ve read and it sounds like the whole book might be up my alley.
3. Now, for what I call general cool stuff. First off, a couple of cool twitter threads
Kate Sawyer 🐋 on Twitter: “Today marks 3 weeks of #TheStranding being published. It’s been a whirlwind with so much INCREDIBLE support & I am so grateful 💙 I’ve had a few people ask how best to support me/or any new author other than buying the book…& I’ve been thinking, so here’s a little🧵 https://t.co/r5EvklMpwa” / Twitter
KJ Mulder – Worlds in Ink on Twitter: “With everything going on in South Africa at the moment I want to share a thread showcasing some of the amazing South African speculative fiction authors I’ve read and reviewed over the years. If you need an escape from reality I highly suggest you pick one of these up!” / Twitter
Now for an interesting article on Utopian novels – The Novel Solutions of Utopian Fiction | The Nation
Here’s an opportunity to get in on buying a Cyberfunk anthology – Cyberfunk! Anthology | MVmedia, LLC (mvmediaatl.com)
Want a run down on Trad Pub vs Self Pub from a blogger well positioned to see a bit of what’s going on with both – On Self-Publishing and Traditional Publishing – The Fantasy Inn
Finally, a cool article on magic from ML Wang over the Hive – Magic and Matriarchy – Guest Post by M. L. Wang | The Fantasy Hive
4. Blog of the week? Mayri over at Bookforager is a lovely, insightful blogger whose thoughts are always worth checking out. For an example of what she’s putting out, check her review of The House of Shattered Wings by Aliette de Bodard
5. I have stupidly got to the last point without anything interesting to put here, so it’ll be my opinion instead.
There seems to be a fair few bloggers asking how to start writing, which is both very understandable and a little weird to me all at once. Understandable, yes, because it’s an endeavour that feels scary and difficult to grapple with. Yet, having been writing for a while now, it feels weird because with a lot of hindsight, trying to grapple with it is nowhere near as sensible as just taking your idea and going for it. Going for it how, cries the would-be writer.
Just pick the method that goes with your gut. If you’re a methodical person, go search for plotting methods and try one out. If you just want to write, just start writing. Will this get you all the way to a finished manuscript? Gods no, but nothing will unless you’re highly talented or stubborn.
The big thing about writing is its very individual and there are a thousand different methods (well, mild hyperbole) but you won’t know what works for you until you find it. I guess asking about methods and how to start makes sense because maybe you’ll hear something that makes you go “aha”, but that aha might still be wrong.
Honestly, in a lot of ways, the most useful attitude for writing is blissful ignorance until heavily emotionally invested. That’s hard to recommend though. People get suspicious when you say it.
But get going and make your mistakes. The sooner you make them, the sooner you can learn. It may sound stupid but it’s the best advice I’ve got from my own work, and my friends’ work, and countless interviews.
Now to publish this while technically Friday. No, wait, shit, failed. Oh well.
Have a good weekend!