Monthly Archives: November 2009

Heads up: They’re reading in PDX tonight

My friend Sara Guest will be reading tonight along with her friends Sage Cohen and Kristin Berger, at Three Friends Coffee House here in Portland.  The fun starts at 7 pm.  You can read more about it here.  (And I’ll be recapping tomorrow, in case you’re tied to your chair and can’t make it.)


What not to do

Courtesy of The Nervous Breakdown, 50 Things Publishers Shouldn’t Do, and 50 Things Writers Shouldn’t Do.

For publishers:

  • Don’t send royalty statements six weeks late.
  • Don’t let poorly copyedited books go out the door. This is a huge annoyance to me. Half the books I read seem to have typos or punctuation errors in them. Christ, give the intern one last go at it.
  • Don’t publish debuts in HC—TPO is the way to go!
  • Jump into the pool if you want to use social media. If your writers are beating you to the punch, then what are you there for? I just learned that a writer I like has written enough of a new novel to give some preliminary readings. Now I even know what the title of the novel will be. For a fan this is great. But did I learn this from the publisher? No. I learned it from the writer’s Facebook page. Does Facebook mean that publishers don’t need to have marketing departments anymore? You tell me.


For writers:

  • Don’t show off, it doesn’t serve the story.
  • Don’t start your story with a character alone in a room unless you’re Kafka and your character is going to turn into a bug.
  • If I send you books to be signed, as I’m a collector of first editions, and you said you’d do it, then you better do it. And respond to my email where I ask if you got the books. You’re just a writer after all. No one is on the operating table.
  • Don’t write something where nothing happens. This ain’t Godot. Make something happen. If you find you don’t have enough material, try microblogging instead.


Et cetera.

I like my utopias utopian.

I’m new to this, but it looks awesome.  Worldbuilders is auctioning (and raffling) off a whole whack of awesome stuff to benefit Heifer International.  It’s your once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to buy Neil Gaiman’s dirty undies and get half a goat at the same time.

Kudos to Patrick Rothfuss for organizing and heroically matching donations, to Subterranean Press for donating loads of signed books and matching donations, and to all the individual folks who donate their time and items, and/or buy them.  Heifer is a terrific organization, and we usually give at least one or two Heifer-type things to each other or our family.  Now we can get moon rocks at the same time!

And hey, nice logo!

Writing tool: Ommwriter

A friend just turned me on to Ommwriter, a beautiful free download that takes some of the distractions out of writing on a computer.  Download it and write on a snowy landscape with soft techno-Zen music in the background.  Set your keystrikes to echo like the sound of pearls of wisdom dropping into a pool of sagacity.  Most of all, wipe your screen clear of all the buttons, links, prompts, tabs, and other crap that’s junking it up right now, as you’re reading this.

Still in beta, but what isn’t?







RPat and the RPatriarchy

Sady over at TigerBeatDown posts some science about Robert Pattinson:  why ladies love him, why that’s weird, why that’s okay, why we don’t blink when straight dudes act the same way about Megan Fox.  One-word synopsis?  Patriarchy.

Failure to grasp the concept

Happy family-oriented holidays!


Enjoy your family holidays!

With love from Amazon.


(Image capped yesterday from

Animals with light sabers