• depression anxiety girl

    You Don’t Have to Be Crazy to Be an Author, But It Helps Jason Pargin

    Let me see if I can get my thoughts out coherently. I have a lot of thoughts. The other day I listened to a podcast that took away hope for my career. Depresh Mode by John Moe interviews celebrities under the lens of mental health and illness — how it’s served them, how it’s hindered them, having a career with those kinds of struggles. He’s had Jamie Lee Curtis, Comedian Dana Gould, Rachel Smythe (creator of Lore Olympus), and Patton Oswalt. But what I want to talk about is Jason Pargin a.k.a. David Wong, author of the “John Dies at the End” series, the “Zoey Ashe” series, former editor-in-chief of…

  • superhero books

    Guest Authors at my Kids’ School

    So at my kids’ elementary school, they have authors come in for talks. Seems like this happens about once a year. It’s great for the kids because they get to meet the people behind the books. And I’d be boosting this even if I wasn’t an author. It’s important to learn that products don’t come out of thin air — it takes hard work, research, patience, and teamwork. It’s like going to a farm to understand where their food comes from — it doesn’t just appear in the grocery store. That we eat other living things and that’s okay — that’s the food chain. It’s good for the authors too…

  • fiction writer what they think i do

    Why I Try and Keep My Writing on the Down-Low

    I recently discovered the “What People Think I Do” meme and found this little gem. It got me thinking about why I’m so shy to tell people that I’m a writer. The first reason is that I’ve only been published in a few magazines and anthologies (like “Live and Let Undead”, now at fine bookstores everywhere). But I feel that until I get a novel on the bookshelf, I’ve earned no legitimacy. I feel that when most people, myself included, learn that a person is a writer, the first thing they ask is if they’ve been published. The perception of being published versus not is the difference between this and…

  • faulkner hemingway black and white

    Faulkner vs. Hemingway

    I was reading this today and found these quotes, which I found rather amusing. William Faulkner on Ernest Hemingway: “He has never been known to use a word that might send a reader to the dictionary.” Ernest Hemingway on William Faulkner: “Poor Faulkner. Does he really think big emotions come from big words?” In 11th grade, I took 20th Century Modern American Literature.  For the first half of the semester we focused greatly on Ernest Hemingway and William Faulkner.  So much so that the teacher made it seem like these were the only two authors writing between WWI and WWII (but all props to Mrs. Susan Hentges.  You were awesome, hope you’re…

  • I Can Be a GoodReads Author

    One of the nice things about being in the Roll the Bones anthology is that I am now in a book. A book with an ISBN number, a cover, and everything. This means that I can be listed on certain sites as an anthology author or co-author, in some cases. One of those sites is GoodReads, which you can see, I’m a member of on the left. But now I can also be listed as a GoodReads author, and it’s nice that they make this so easy. I just sent in a notice, and they have to review my application and such. I’ll be able to add a photo, create…

  • bookshelf books

    The Books I Read: September – October 2010

    The Help by Kathryn Stockett This is an excellent book. It was on everybody’s “Best of” lists for 2009, but I never considered reading it because it wasn’t in my genre. And to be honest, it sounded a little Gone With the Wind for me. But my mom had it and liked it, so I borrowed it. What book is is females with no junky romance (well, a little), no weak women, and lots of Bechdel test successes. This is a book about black housemaids in the 1950’s in the south and their white women employers. The novel takes it from multiple perspectives, and there are good and bad guys, and not everyone…

  • sony ereader

    One Thing I Didn’t Think Of For E-Books

    This post by Agent Kristin of Pub Rants made me think of something I haven’t considered for the future of eBooks. How do you get your eBooks signed? This customer apparently thought signing the back was appropriate. And while I like the idea of a single tablet signed by your favorite authors (the equivalent of a guitar signed by the band) there’s only so much space on the back. These eReaders are intended to hold thousands of novels. Apparently, getting your book signed by the author is a big deal in the reading world. I never understood it myself–a signature is just a signature. But I do know why people…

  • Authors I Would Like to Have Dinner With, Vol. 2

    Peter David – I want to talk to this guy to figure out how to get his career going. He’s one of the funnest writers I’ve ever read, but he’s stuck doing Star Trek tie-ins and occasional comic book. He’s a kitty in a burlap sack named obscurity, and he needs to paw his way out. Besides that, he’s one of the few people whose writing style really strikes me. I find that comic book graphic novel writers make great novelists — Neal Stephenson, Richard Kadrey, this guy. If I can find out what he does and incorporate that into my writing style, I can develop my voice more. I…

  • The 2010 Hugos and Where You Can Find Them

    So every year the Hugos and Nebulas come out and I try and read them all. Of course, it’s hard to read the novels, but they do have excerpts. So at least you can get an idea for what the book is about when they talk about it in the blogs. This year, I thought I’d let you all in on what I find too. Share the wealth, that’s what I say. So here are all the links I found to this year’s Hugo nominations online. Some are full and some are excerpts. I usually didn’t include Amazon if I didn’t have to, but that’s another resource you can use.…

  • Authors I Would Like To Have Dinner With

    Neil Gaiman – We could go out for tea (authentic British tea that doesn’t suck like American tea, or so he says) and real sushi (which I never get because my wife is afraid of raw food, so I have to get the kind from the supermarket). I could ask him about all the cool stuff he’s done, like movies and have a panda on his lap. And how he did his writing with his kids around and what it’s like living a public life as a writer and private life as a parent.  I want to talk about how he plots, because he has a talent for making every…