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Posts from the ‘Field Politics’ Category

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

Something Wicked this Way…

What evil lurks in the hearts of men? The Shadow knows… 

I didn’t grow up reading comic books. There were reasons: I’ve been reading, and a fast reader, since I was probably 4, and comic books were not a good return on my tiny book allowance. Also, I didn’t grow up in an urban setting. Books were hard to come by, and I clung to them. Clung to them bitterly when the time came to move and I had to thin them down to the necessaries over and over through life. Also, I grew up in a very religious household, and there were books I just wasn’t allowed to read (although I will say that comics were never on the verbally forbidden list – that dubious honor went to two authors when I was allowed free range at the library. I was not supposed to read Robert Heinlein or Danielle Steele. I never bothered with the latter. The former… well, how do you think I wound up here?). So to recap: I was a bitter clinger to my books, my Bible, and my guns (ok, my parent’s guns, which yes, I was taught to shoot). Stay with me, here, I’m going somewhere.  Read more

Flinch Training

In our polarized world, we are facing a constant onslaught of messages. From the practical of ‘look both ways before you cross the street‘ to the insane gaslighting of ‘glyphosate causes cancer‘ we’re bombarded at every turn. It’s on the news, on the internet, and in our fiction. We can’t escape it, it seems.

My Dad adopted a dog a few years ago while I was still living with him on the Farm. The young dog he’d adopted was about a year old, and a farm collie (appropriately enough), and he was a rescue dog. That last part was the problematic bit. You see, Wade had been born and raised on a farm down South somewhere, with his big dog family, and one little old man. When the man died, the dogs were left alone, roaming the farm, lost and confused. Read more

Pie

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

Great American Literature, or Great American Stories

The third world-building post will be in two weeks. It’s coming, never fear. But apropos of the piece at The Passive Voice/Wall Street Journal, and the never-ending debate about “what is real literature” and why should everyone read it, I started wondering…

Rather than “the Great American Novel” with all the literary weight that seems to freight the idea, what if we talked about “the Great American Stories?” Read more

And So It’s Come to This

It’s Tuesday once again, and that means you’re all subjected to my rambling words of wisdom. But first! Clan Dave is doing fine (it’s fine, it’s all fine, no problems at all AT ALL). Mom Dave and Pop Dave are visiting, and have been occupying Wee Dave and Wee-er Dave. Also cleaning Castle Dave, which is doing wonders for Dave’s peace (and piece) of mind. I’ve even gotten to bugger off and loaf about write at the local caffeination establishments. I finished a short story, and about four chapters of a space opera project.

I really don’t know what to do with myself. It’s like almost all of my fondest dreams are coming true. I’m really clinging to the hope that both of the littles will be able to rock the morning pre-school gig come September. I’d get to write every day. I could set up a publishing schedule without laughing bitter tears. The world might end, or at least mine.
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All Is Well!!

I woke up this morning to see that the beautiful, wealthy people at the top of the American publishing scene are telling me publishing is doing well! Whew. That’s a load off. And here, I can’t actually remember the last time I purchased a hardcopy genre novel. I suspect it was before Wee Dave was born, for a couple of reasons. First, disposable income. Second, I don’t remember a whole lot of the last four years.

Ok, the truly entertaining part of John Sargent’s (CEO of Macmillan) comments wasn’t thanking President Trump for trying to block the publication of Michael Wolff’s magnificent work of fiction Fire & Fury. (I still think the POTUS’ mobilization of the DOJ – aside from being apparently juvenile – was mostly trolling his political and cultural opponents.) Oh, no. That’s what followed, where he pulled off his gleaming helmet, wiped his noble brow, and assured us he believes “free speech … is the greatest value” in publishing. Such a paladin. I’m so glad powerful businessmen are there to defend our rights. I just wish they’d do it consistently, since that’s what they claim to be for.
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