I sometimes think I live in a constant state of outrage because I read the news. Every day, there’s something new. I occasionally divorce myself from the constant barrage by going on a news-holiday or a Twitter-holiday, so I sometimes miss the current stuff. Imagine my surprise, as I scanned through Twitter a few weeks ago, to see a writer I follow go after Tor […]
One of the major reasons I write a lot about contracts and negotiation is because in the entertainment field, which is where we writers work, contracts are a nightmare. They’re often written by people who are not lawyers (agent contracts with writers) or negotiated by people who are not lawyers (publishing contracts negotiated by an agent for a writer) or are based on “accepted practices” […]
I could spend the next seven days on promotion and feel like I’m working at my writing full time. Seriously. I have the Fiction River Kickstarter to promote. I’m in a Storybundle with a Diving novella that might get more readers to the next book in the series, which will appear in mid-September. I have a brand new story in Alfred Hitchcock’s Mystery Magazine that’s […]
The universe keeps giving me excellent examples of things I try to teach on this blog. When I wrote a recent post titled “Knowing What You Want,” that example was one of the first positive examples I had found on how to negotiate. Today’s post does not contain a positive example, I’m afraid. It’s an example of something I stress over and over again, but […]
Note: I wrote this post weeks ago, when my website went down…again. I posted this on Patreon, but waited to post here until I had moved out of the hosting service that was causing all of the issues. I’m out now, but the website is still settling. The migration will take a bit more time to shake out, so please be a bit patient with […]
The problem with the hamster wheel school of writing is that at a certain point all of that love of writing, all of that joy in storytelling, goes out the window, and writing becomes drudgery. It’s not fun to write the same story over and over again. It’s not fun to write stories on topics you hate. It’s not fun to write in genres you loathe.
So many writers are doing that, though, and have no idea how to quit…
In the late 1980s, some functionary at a record label fielded a call about a song called “Private Idaho,” by the B-52s. The song was never a major hit, although by the time that phone call got made, the B-52s were topping the charts with a song called “Love Shack.” The caller wanted to use the song in an upcoming movie written and directed by […]
Well, you see, I’ve still been noodling the question I asked last week about the writers trying to game Amazon’s algorithms and seem to have lost the heart of their writing. What motivates them?
I know a lot of real writers—and you probably do too—who are still trying to game those algorithms. Those are the people I’m trying to figure out.
And Chef’d and MoviePass helped explain them to me.
I don’t get it. I really don’t. You’d think they all started out wanting to tell their own stories. You’d think they identified themselves as writers first, not book stuffers or algorithm gamers. But I have no idea, really, and I’ve been part of the indie movement almost from the beginning. You see, at lunch today, I finally had a chance to read Sarah Jeong’s […]
When I teach craft workshops, one of the things I work on the hardest is teaching writers the difference between taste and “good fiction.” I put “good fiction” in quotes, because there seems to be this belief among most writers and readers that “good fiction” is something quantifiable. Certain books are “good” because they have elements that professors approve of, or elements that the culture […]