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.


Thursday, June 30, 2011

Dealing with Writer Envy

Writerly Fantasy Book Review:
Got Kevin Hearne's  Hexed read.  First, I want to say, I hate Hearne -- in the teenaged angst sort of way.  He only wrote for 19 years before he sold his trilogy.  --  [He deserves the success -- and makes my use of some of the same motifs look pedestrian.]

A second volume of a trilogy usually sags.  Hexed breaks that rule.  The plot arc flows as the gods, demons, witches, and dangling problems from the first book complicate things in the second volume.  The story?  Atticus O'Sullivan, the last remaining druid, survived an attack by gods and demons in Hounded, but one demon managed to escape and plot revenge.  Atticus must defend his southwestern US turf with the suspect help of the local Polish witch coven and the interference of religious fanatics seeking to destroy all magic workers.  The writing is fast and funny and totally deserving of envy.

I'm looking forward to Hammered, the third volume.  Del Rey Books has turned the trilogy into a series which should be a fun ride.  Hearne mix and matches a variety of the world's belief systems into one delightfully funny romp.

Social Networking and Other Web Stuff:
I don't know how Victoria Strauss of Writer Beware does it, but an awful lot of her blogs hit problems I'm facing on the nail head.  A recent blog on how to get out of contracts when a publisher goes belly up or some other reason is worth saving.  Guess I'm a disgustingly median writer.  

[Yeah, I got a contract dangling ...  but I've also got a book derived from it almost ready to submit.  Book trumps short story ... so guess which one I'm putting into play.  The short story can fester for the time being.  I also have another contract promised when the small publisher finishes their current project.  Have the draft for that one waiting for another revision.  So, I'm interested in contracts as well as marketing.]

Have just survived the cover wars with a cover I like [Cavern Between Worlds] so I found N. R. Williams blog at The Blood Red Pencil last week a relief.  Basically, she runs through the items your book cover should contain, a pertinent point now that so many writers are self-publishing.  As she puts it:  What Your Cover Should Not Do.  Even if you have a royalty publisher, the article will give you some arguing points.

[Now, excuse me while I dream of some famous author writing a cover blurb for my novel.  Of course, first I have to find a major publisher.]

Speaking of major publishers.  It's becoming more and more important to go over your contracts with a magnifying glass ... or is that a microscope?  The Passive Guy commented on Kristen Nelson's blog on Random Houses change to blanket e-royalties.  Seems to me the publisher changed the e-royalties without notifying anyone.  Also, I think I read something about one publisher reducing the royalty payout by contracting out to one of its subsidiaries.  --  Anyone taking bets on whether the authors on the messy end of the stick will sue?

For all you thinking of self-publishing, the Passive Guy also links to a self-publishing flow chart by the Self-Publishing coach.  If you don't know what good the old-style publisher does for an author, your eyes will open.  --  No wonder I don't have any time except for marketing.  When you self-publish you become the whole smeil.

My Writing Lessons:
My head's still spinning over my Half-Elven bible.  When Dark Solstice got rejected, yet again, I went back and looked at the mess of files I have on the world -- some seven crammed folders.  *rude noise*.  -- So, much for thinking I'll be writing something new.  Actually, I am -- another Half-Elven story set just after Taking Vengeance.  Something called book reviews.

Oh, the trailer is doing well, according to Big Burrito Media ... but I haven't seen any results in the sales figures for Taking Vengeance.

No.  That was not a criticism of the trailer.  The results won't be in for at least six months.   Mostly the lack of sales is my responsibility.  So far, I haven't lined up any reviewers for Taking Vengeance.

The couple generic friends' deaths didn't disrupt things much as my good friend's,
which is sad in its own way.   

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