Lessons from My Reading

M. K. Theodoratus, Fantasy Writer, blogs about the books she reads--mostly fantasy and mystery authors whose books catch her eye and keep her interest. Nothing so formal as a book review, just chats about what she liked. Theodoratus also mutters about her own writing progress or ... lack of it.

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Thursday, August 26, 2010

Avoiding Glops of Infodump

The Read ...
All fiction writers wrestle with backstory.  Fantasy writers have an added nemesis -- infodumps that try to explain the characters' world without slowing down the story.  While browsing the bookstore shelves, I picked a random volumne of Rachel Caine's Morganville Vampires series.  If I remember right, she's going to be at MileHi Con in Denver.  Thought it'd be politick to read a couple more of the books.  I was rewarded by a skillful example of feeding backstory/world info into the story line without slowing it down.

The book:  Feast of Fools, the fourth in the series.  I know I read Glass Houses, the first in the series, and I'm sure I haven't read any others.  Still, her first chapter was masterful in leading the reader into the new installment of "how to deal with benign and not-so-benign vampires".  I really sat up and took notice when I learned the MC's over-protective parents had moved to Morganville and needed protection from their daughter in this new environment.  Whatever, by the end of the first chapter, I was back in the loop with a good idea of the new problems facing Claire, new villains, and what had happened to the main/secondary characters in the previous books.   All as the story surged ahead.

Loved the opening hook for the book too.  "It was hard to imagine how Claire's day -- even by Morganville standards -- could get any worse ... and then the vampires holding her hostage wanted breakfast."  I leave you to wonder what the big, bad vampires wanted for breakfast.

Web Stuff ...
Trying to get my first Renna's Tale up on the blog.   Grump.  Grump.  Snarl.  Blogger won't let you cut and paste from Word docs.  Anyone have any ideas  besides typing the story in ... all nine pages?

Progress ...
Just be fiddling with the website ... trying to get stat counters in and other such necessities.

Did get Dark Solstice re-editing done -- mostly duplicate comments (telling and then showing or vice-versa), changing passive that still lurked, and other miscellaneous.  Now I've got to think of marketing.

Trivia ...
Am deep in Suzanne Collins' Catching Fire, but keep slapping my hand when I pick up Mockingjay.  I don't think it's a good idea to read two books in a series at the same time.

Oh, the vampires.  They wanted scrambled eggs, which was good since Claire didn't know how to cook eggs over easy.  A sad commentary on today's young adults.  My kids, even the male, could cook a whole meal by the time they were 12. 
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