By Gail Z. Martin
I stopped following new shows on TV back in grad school because my crazy schedule meant I could never keep up with the latest episodes (yes, that was before DVR and Netflix). I spent the 90s watching a lot of TV but it was PBS Kids and Magic School Bus, with a few exceptions like Babylon 5 and a little bit of ST:NG (I missed Firefly the first time around).
So it’s only been relatively recently that I’ve gone back to catching up on shows on Netflix and video, and following some that are still running. (For a while, I was afraid to get hooked on a show still in production because as soon as I fell for it, it got cancelled. Lookin’ at you, Beauty and the Beast with Linda Hamilton!)
I can’t completely take off my author hat as I watch shows. I’m always […]
Continue reading What I Learned About Writing From Watching TV
As the year winds down, and I start considering all the work I need to get done in the next few weeks, my mind naturally turns to the topic of deadlines. Deadlines are one of the harsh realities of life as a professional writer. We are always working under one deadline or another; often we face several at once, some of them external, some of them self-imposed. I am looking at four looming deadlines right now, one that I established myself, one that is contractual, one for a short story that I promised to a friend [waves at Misty], and another for an anthology to which I’d like to submit another story.
Writing to deadline is something pros do. Ask any writer what he or she feels is a defining characteristic of a professional writer and s/he is bound to mention hitting deadlines. If we can’t hand in work on […]
Continue reading Quick-Tip Tuesday: Deadlines!
So my well died sometime in the night.
At least, I assume that’s what happened. We woke up this morning to discover that there was no water pressure. (Nope, the pipes aren’t frozen – it wasn’t that cold last night.) The guy is coming over later today to take a look. He had recommended that we fix something else a while back, and warned that if we didn’t fix the other thing, we’d likely see our well pump die sooner than expected. (It is 25 years old, so it was probably time for it to go anyway, but I digress…) Trouble was that in addition to fixing the thing, there are so many, many other things that demand my money. I need to replace the roof, and my front windows are in dreadful shape. My kitchen floor could use replacing, and the carpet in the great room is way beyond […]
Continue reading What’s It Cost?
Happy Day-After-Valentine’s Day, Y’all! Picking up where we left off, let’s talk about small presses. (I know it isn’t a rose or candy, but it’s good info.)
With stores ordering fewer and fewer books, publishing houses publishing fewer and fewer books, and more and more readers ordering electronic books (the book purchasing percentages of the Jane Yellowrock series are now 81% electronic) we have more and more writers, even high midlist name writers, looking at small presses. Herewith are a few of the Pros (prose?) and Cons of the SMALL PRESS.
Cons 1. No books on bookstore shelves 2. Poor likelihood of library purchases 3. Poor likelihood that the small press will work with distributors like Baker & Taylor and Ingram’s 4. Which makes it difficult for indie bookstores and chains to even know about your book 5. Few small presses even put out an electronic catalogue 6. Small presses […]
Continue reading The Beginning of the End Part 3 — The Small Press
“If you want to be a writer, you must do two things above all others: read a lot and write a lot. There’s no way around these two things that I’m aware of, no shortcut.”
“If you don’t have time to read, you don’t have the time (or the tools) to write. Simple as that.”
“Good description is a learned skill, one of the prime reasons why you cannot succeed unless you read a lot and write a lot. It’s not just a question of how-to, you see; it’s also a question of how much to. Reading will help you answer how much, and only reams of writing will help you with the how. You can learn only by doing.”
“I’m a slow reader, but I usually get through seventy or eighty books a year, most fiction. I don’t read in order to study the craft; I read because I […]
Continue reading Read Like a Writer
Before I get to my topic, here’s a most shameless of plugs. It’s my birthday, and I want you to buy yourself a present. Buy a book! Preferably one from one of the folks here at MW, and God knows that gives you plenty to choose from. I’ve provided an image and link to my latest, but go pick up something from one of us – me, David, Faith, Gail, Misty, Emily, Tamsin. Melissa – we’ve all got work out there, and as a gift to me, I want you to buy yourself something pretty. And enjoy! Here’s a link to my latest release – Queen of Kats, Part I.
It’s THE book.
You know the one I’m talking about. It’s your novel. It’s your Water for Chocolate, your American Gods, your Beloved. It’s the book that will change the way people look at books, at writing, […]
Continue reading The Book of Your Heart
Today is release day for Dead Man’s Reach, the fourth and final (for now) novel of the Thieftaker Chronicles. I’m incredibly excited about this book for several reasons, not the least of which being that it represents, I believe, some of the finest work I’ve ever done. I hope you enjoy reading it every bit as much as I enjoyed writing it.
All of the Thieftaker novels demanded that I interweave fictional story elements with actual historical events. That has been one of the great challenges of writing these books, and one of the great pleasures as well. And I think that most fans of the series would agree that the interplay of fiction with history is part of what has drawn them to the Ethan Kaille stories.
In no book has that blending of history and make believe been more demanding, more complex, and more intricate, than in Dead […]
Continue reading David B. Coe: Release Day for DEAD MAN’S REACH!