100+ Sci-Fi & Fantasy Authors Blog About Suicide, Depression, PTSD—a #HoldOnToTheLight Update by Gail Z. Martin

More than 100 authors are now part of the #HoldOnToTheLight conversation! Our authors span the globe, from the US to the UK to Canada, Australia and New Zealand. Even more exciting is that as the campaign picks up traction and visibility, more authors want to join, meaning a growing, vibrant dialog about mental wellness and coping with mental illness.

#HoldOnToTheLight is a blog campaign encompassing blog posts by fantasy and science fiction authors around the world in an effort to raise awareness around treatment for depression, suicide prevention, domestic violence intervention, PTSD initiatives, bullying prevention and other mental health-related issues. We believe fandom should be supportive, welcoming and inclusive, in the long tradition of fandom taking care of its own. We encourage readers and fans to seek the help they or their loved ones need without shame or embarrassment.

We’ve also been talking with conventions to encourage them to […]

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If You Meet A Writer On The Road

It’s that time of year… SF and fantasy cons all over are gearing up. Writers are gassing up their cars, making hotel arrangements and packing their bags with books, bookmarks and all manner of swag to give out to admiring fans from hither to yon. Cons are great fun, for the most part. If you’re headed to ConNooga this weekend, Mysticon or Anachrocon next weekend, or another con down the line, you’re sure to have a good time. But I beg of you, keep your good manners handy. There are a few things you just shouldn’t do when you go to a con.

First, let’s talk about the facility itself. Most cons are held in hotels. The hotel and the con have a contract together, with the hotel agreeing to host the panels and activities and offer attendees a discounted room rate in exchange for an upfront payment from the […]

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What Kind of Reader Are You?

Reading seems like a solitary activity. You don’t usually pay attention to how other people approach reading, except perhaps for family members when you’re waiting for them to finish a book you want to read.

Authors and publishers, however, are keenly interested in how readers go about their reading, because it holds the key to the future of the industry.

Think about how consumer behavior changed movies. Used to be, everyone saw movies at the theater. Then, TV began running movies several years after their theatrical release, albeit with commercials and edits. VHS made it possible to watch movies whenever you wanted them. TiVo and VHS recording changed how we watched TV, too. Then came movie rental stores, which gave way to RedBox and Netflix. Now it’s not only possible to pretty much watch what you want when you want, but ‘binge watching’ is the new normal.

The music […]

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Getting Back Into the Groove

I’ve been running a Meetup group in Charlotte called the Thrifty Author’s Publishing Success Network for six years now. Every month, we get together and talk about an aspect of publishing or writing or marketing, and the group suggests a theme for the next month. It’s a tactics group, not a writing critique group, and it’s a fantastic bunch of people (if you’re in driving distance, c’mon and join us). So in 2016, I’m going to use the group’s monthly theme for one of my monthly posts here, starting now.

Which brings me to this month’s question–how do you get back into the groove when you’ve taken a break?

Maybe you got busy with life, or got sick or hit a wall on your idea and … stopped writing for a while. Or maybe you set one project aside to work on something else that had a more urgent due […]

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The Role of Agents in the Modern Publishing Landscape

I was asked to do a talk this past weekend on the role of agents in the modern publishing world, and it seemed like a great blog post topic as well, so I figured that since my notes were already prepared…

In many, many ways, an agent’s role hasn’t changed at all from when I first entered the business over twenty years ago. We’re still authors’ advocates—first, last and always. We’re still business managers and advisors, negotiators and networkers. But to be specific, here are some of the things we do and some of the ways in which are roles have changed and expanded.

Agents still read submissions and fall in love with books we want to champion. We still read synopses, partials and fulls for our authors, providing feedback and critique, sometimes through multiple iterations of the material, whether we’re preparing these works for submission or publication. We guide […]

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