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Posts from the ‘Field Politics’ Category

The Successful Writer

Detail from a ceiling. Author Photo.

Ah, that legendary beast of misty lore, the creature that haunts authors’ dreams, whispering in the dark of night, then disappearing in the harsh light of dawn…

OK, sorry, that’s the neighborhood cat that gets Athena all riled up by perching on the windowsill.

These days, depending on which news stories you read, it is easier than ever to become a successful author, or you are doooooomed by the lack of government support (UK) and the enormous numbers of independently published books of dubious quality. Either you can make lots and lots of money, or the pie slices are shrinking faster than an ice-cube on the hood of a black car in Phoenix, Arizona in mid-August.

What is success? It depends on the author’s goals. How do you get there? It depends on your goals. Read more

Pie

Soon, Dave will be finished moving! (It’s never as easy or cheap or fast as hoped.) And then, he’ll be able to bake more pie! This one’s from August 06, 2018.

I like pie…

Now my answer to who gets what share of the pie in publishing (actually in most things) is hey, let’s make a bigger pie.

That’s always seemed a sensible answer to me. I’ve spent years talking about ways to make reading more popular with as many people as possible. I can summarize many thousands of words into this: Give as many readers as possible what they enjoy. Help them find it, keep them coming back for more.

A rising tide floats ALL boats. Read more

Financial exclusion

Chuckle. You know those delightful situations where some twit sets out to insult you, and falls over their own ignorance? Calls you stupendous under the mistaken impression that it is a fancy word for stupid and will make them look so superior? Or howls how racist you are for describing a payment as niggardly? Or claims that describing Chinese Communists by the US State Dept shortening of ‘Chicom’ is ‘racist’?

One of the fans sent me a hilarious puppy-kicker comment about Mad Genius Club — MGC, which any analysis of past posts would show is where a bunch of writers of various ages, stages, sexes, ethnicities, national origins, differing social and political views and backgrounds all coming together to help and support their fellow writers. To help people with the profession of writing.

The profession of writing.

Not the hobby, or self-fulfilment, or getting in touch with your inner self, or getting in touch with your outer self, or virtue signaling, or artistic merit, of writing. Read more

Witches Float

I’ve been slowly reading my way through an excellent book on psychology. One of the studies the author discusses in detail is what should be done for survivors of some mass disaster or trauma. Oddly, the answer seems to be: don’t force them to relive it. People are surprisingly resilient, it turns out. And forcing them to talk about what happened in an effort to prevent PTSD turns out to actually make the problem worse. If you leave them alone, people will recover, come to terms, and when they need it, seek help. This isn’t always true… some people are not resilient at all. They shatter under pressure. I can give you examples of both, in the writing world, from the past week.  Read more

Shut up! shutup! shutup!

Image pixabay.

“That’s cultural appropriation! You can’t do that! Shutup shutup shutup!”

“Do you think that cultures have a right to maintain their traditions, especially ones with a well-documented history going back hundreds of years? Cultural patterns which are as much part of their culture as breathing is part of your living? Cultural behavior which defines them, without which they would stop being their culture?”

“Of course!”

“Good-o. Piss off, Asshole.” Read more

Chilling? Downright Frigid.

Very first thing: if you haven’t read Amanda’s post from this morning, go read it. While this morality clause nonsense is dangerous to writers, and it’s certainly a CYA move on the part of the publishers including it in their contracts, I can’t help but wonder if it’s *also* being used as a means of further gatekeeping. “You’d better stay in the conservative closet, if you want to keep writing in your favorite world.” Read more

Doing it Wrong

Fandoms, marketing, self-promotion, success… all the wonderful complications of becoming an author. Some people handle it better than others do. Let’s face it, in the days of Trad Pub, you could potentially be a hermit and still be successful because there was a slim chance akin to winning the lottery that the publisher would push the book even if you never faced the fans. Now? Now we have twitter mobs turned to ill gains. Look for instance at the scurrilous attempt to call Nora Roberts a plagiarist. Read more