I’m finally home after ConCarolinas and the Roaring Writers Retreat, where I taught and led critique sessions for a fun, productive, wonderful week. (Thanks for inviting me, folks — it was fantastic!) My third night home — last night — I attended a meeting of the writer’s group of which I’m a part here in my town. And, of course, I’m posting this to MW, which has been the foundation of my writing family for eight and a half years.
So, I thought today I should post about community and its importance to writers of all levels.
Writing can be a lonely profession. We often work on our own, toiling alone for hours at a time, sending our work into what can feel like a marketplace vacuum, and waiting for feedback that can be hurtful, even brutal. It’s hard, and our solitude makes it harder. Yes, we have loved ones […]
Continue reading Quick-Tip Tuesday: Finding A Writing Community
Last month, I talked a bit about the changes present and coming to the publishing industry: the way that mass market paperbacks (the small paperbacks) are slipping away; the way that publishing houses are moving to Trade (the large paperbacks), Hard cover, and E-books; the way that bookstores are going to buy and stock fewer books altogether. A LOT less books; the way that the decreasing amount of shelf space for new books in stores will change the publishing marketplace. Worse – the way that, with fewer large pubs, there will be fewer numbers of writers published. Worst — the way that those fewer numbers of books in houses and on bookshelves means fewer editorial staff kept on hand, fewer PR staff, and all this means more adjustments for unpublished and midlist writers.
These changes have already resulted in a huge transformation in the way readers shop for books, and […]
Continue reading The Beginning of The End, Part 2
[Originally posted on Facebook]
A writer I know has died. His name was Daniel R. Davis, and most of you, I’m sure, are unfamiliar with his work.
Daniel was taken from his wife and young daughter way too soon, and he was robbed of the career he dreamed of and deserved. I didn’t know Daniel well — I’d only met him in person a couple of times. But for years he was an integral part of the Magical Words community, someone who commented on posts and offered his insights and experiences on a variety of topics all relating to the written word, for which he had an enduring passion.
There was, from the beginning of our interactions, a quiet confidence to Daniel. He hadn’t been published yet, and he never tried to pass himself off as an expert or as someone who had met more of his goals than he […]
Continue reading Daniel R. Davis
Faith Hunter was kind enough to invite me to do a guest post for Magical Words back in January of this year. We agreed I’d contribute a post for early August, to coincide with the release of Codex Born. And then I did something that makes me Hulk out and smash my desk: I forgot about the commitment I’d made, and missed my deadline.
I emailed her to apologize. Fortunately, Faith is both kind and forgiving. As a fellow author, I think she understands that no matter how hard we try, sometimes life gets in the way. She commented in her email to me, “For instance, today, I have to get groceries, go to the vet and the dry-cleaners, show up for a doctor’s apt, and, oh yeah. Write a couple thousand words.”
Sometimes things slip through the cracks. Sometimes we blow it.
This wasn’t much of an issue when […]
Continue reading It’s Raining Deadlines — Jim C. Hines
Two years ago, I went to my first ConCarolinas and had the great good fortune to meet several of the MagicalWords.net authors, as well as several fans and MW participants. One group of us in particular really hit it off and agreed to meet up again the next year. At the end of *that* con, as Melanie described, our final gathering resulted in “let’s have a writers’ retreat next year”. Like you do.
Imagine my surprise – all of our surprise, I think – as we started trading emails and beginning to discuss plans, and everyone remained enthusiastic. Along the way, a couple of people had to withdraw from the retreat itself for different reasons, but they stayed active and encouraging in the discussions all the same.
And what a real thrill to learn that Faith would be able to join us, both for some much needed post-con […]
Continue reading Writer’s Retreats — Our Thoughts, Part Two
Bonjour! I am Lillian Archer, and I am tres excited to be posting on Magical Words today. Merci beaucoup to the MW team, and go buy some of their books.
My book, Prodigal Spell, is a historical fantasy set in 1790s London and the Caribbean at the height of British colonial expansion. It is the story of Julia Richmond, a London society wife, who is hiding her witchcraft from her husband, her friends, and the church. She must choose between the man she loves or a heritage she detests before a demon kills her father. It is a story about severely fractured people and relationships hiding in a historical fantasy.
I began my publishing journey like many others- I procured an agent, and then waited for a contract from a publishing house. Not a single house wanted to purchase the book. Several houses expressed interest, and I offered […]
Continue reading Self-publishing and why I chose this path — Lillian Archer
There were six of us… There are three posts today, and three more next Friday. And this is how it happened.
‘Till Birnam forest come to Dunsinane,’ or, How a Writers Retreat Took Root
Like so many other rooms hosting writer panels at 2013’s ConCarolinas, this particular one—”Burnham”— was overgrown with people. Overgrown, not overrun; we had planted ourselves there to hear published authors discuss a specific topic. Considering the quantity of us listeners squeezed in and barely keeping our feet, in the chaos it wouldn’t have been a stretch to be mistaken as trees. Maybe even a forest. Couldn’t tell ya since it was hard to see. But, as such things happen, especially when everyone is so squashed together, you becomes friendly with others around you. Doubly so when you later discover them also hanging out with authors from Magical Words. Bonus! And so, maybe unsurprisingly, a […]
Continue reading Writer’s Retreats — Our Thoughts, Part One