Page Critique Friday!! Please stop by the Forums for your Page Critiquing Pleasure. That is, if you are not already splayed on a beach somewhere in anticipation of Labor Day Weekend and SNIFF the end of summer FOR THE LOVE OF SUNSHINE SUMMER WHERE DID YOU GO??
UPDATE: my critique and more about the danger of expository dialogue posted here.
Meanwhile, links!! I have had quite the busy week so I may have missed some news items – if you spotted a good link please share it in the comments!
First, in Truly Important Publishing News, EW wonders why there have been no authors on Dancing With the Stars. YEAH. WHERE ARE THEY?? Then again, Elaine Benes worked in publishing on Seinfeld and we all know how that turned out.
There have been some more interesting Future of Publishing discussions around the blogosphere this week. Tim Ferriss of the Four Hour Workweek has a far-ranging discussion of the economics of print vs. e-books and what this means for authors, and concludes that save for a few exceptions, traditional is still the way to go. And Kassia Krozser at Booksquare has a nuanced take on the idea of books and value and what happens to the collective notion of publishers’ value when they let established authors rest on their laurels and publish books they know to be of questionable quality.
Also a new book social networking community has launched! The Reading Room allows its users to generate reading groups and features a list of free e-books to peruse. Check it out.
In the wake of all the talk of whether NY Times favors men vs. women, Slate ran the numbers on the reviews for adult fiction and found that men received 62% of the reviews and 71% of the coveted double reviews (a review in the weekday paper plus a review in the Sunday TBR). They caution that missing from the analysis is the number of overall adult fiction novels that are published by men vs. women.
The $99 e-reader is here! Fresh off news that Borders will be selling Build-A-Bears (some people thought this was a spoof but it’s true and hey whatever works, Borders! No judging here), they will also be selling $99 Aluratek e-readers featuring the Kobo bookstore. Meanwhile, Sony came out with a new generation of e-readers priced at $179, $229, and $279 depending on size, features, storage, and 3G capabilities. And on the horizon is an Android powered 7″ tablet designed by Samsung, which will feature a bookreading App by Kobo.
Set your blasters to global! Harpers US, UK, and Aus/NZ are teaming up for a pan-world science fiction and fantasy imprint called Voyager. In addition to possessing the ability to time travel AND wield a +5 sword, the resulting imprint will feel no pain and can’t be reasoned with.
In query news, Tahereh has an incredible ode to queries in Shel Silverstein form, the Rejectionist posted her adorable first query from Age 7 and promptly ripped it to shreds, my wonderful client Natalie Whipple is launching a Friday feature called Happy Writers Society by sharing her first query, and the Guide to Literary Agents blog has an interview with my fantastic agent Catherine Drayton.
This week in the Forums, Page Critique Friday!, don’t forget about the Ask Nathan thread if you have any questions, how did your favorite childhood books influence you, turning a short story into a novel, how do you decide where to put chapter breaks, and teenage writers unite!
Comment! of! the! Week! Goes to Mira, who had a terrific comment on whether angst inspires writing. An excerpt:
The drive to write for me can come from witnessing human suffering up close. When you see a deep level of human pain, it makes you want to do something, anything to make it better. You want to tell the world, try to influence it, try to heal it, try to make it better.
And when you suffer deeply yourself….I’ve been trying to capture this in words forever, and I probably won’t be able to here. But when you are in deep emotional pain for long periods of time it changes you. It softens and cleanses. It’s so hard to describe, but for me it’s been like a pumice stone. It scrapes away the edges and makes the channels run clear and clean. You have access to something very deep within you, and that’s the part of you that can come forth and speak through the creative process.
And finally, acclaimed band the Arcade Fire has a truly groundbreaking video that allows you to input your childhood home address or school and uses it to create a personalized music video. It uses HTML5 and works best in the Chrome browser (thanks to Lawrence McKay for the heads up). Definitely worth checking out.
Have a great weekend!! The blog will be dark on Monday for the holiday and I’ll be back on Tuesday.