Archive for January, 2011

Jan 29 2011

writing weekend links

Published by under Life

It arose as a discussion in writing group last week, so here’s a discussion of the trickiness of the passive voice for your edification.

More moderation on the piracy/e-books front from Tobias Buckell.

From the same guy I linked to last week who wrote Killing the Sacred Cows of Publishing, here’s an essay about the common scams modern writers can find themselves entangled in…

And in a slightly more general business vein, I linked to this a couple of weeks ago but I’m about halfway through reading it, and it deserves another shout-out due to the usefulness of info within. The Freelancer’s Survival Guide is written by a writer but has large amounts of relevant information that are applicable to anyone trying to freelance in the early 21st century, check it out!

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Jan 26 2011

Opening Moves

Published by under callie

existence (ɪɡˈzɪstəns)
— n
1. the fact or state of existing; being
2. the continuance or maintenance of life; living, esp in adverse circumstances: a struggle for existence ; she has a wretched existence
3. something that exists; a being or entity
4. everything that exists, esp that is living

Word Origin
late 14c., from O.Fr. existence , from L.L. existentem “existent,” prp. of L. existere “stand forth, appear,” and, as a secondary meaning, “exist;” from ex- “forth” + sistere “cause to stand” (see assist).


“Would you like something to drink? Tea, coffee? Are you able to eat or drink here?”

Callie’s visitor rolled her eyes. “We aren’t in Hades, Callie. Apple juice will be fine.”

Callie poured the juice which she found in the fridge into a clear glass with a dark blue rim. She took that to her guest, being careful to set it down within reach but without moving too close. Callie filled a water glass for herself and sat back down across from the visitor.

“Show me.”

The other’s clipped tone cued Callie to what she must be referring. Callie drew out the paper that had led her to Z’Aria from her pocket and placed it on the table between them, smoothing out the folds as she did so. The only sound was the crinkle of paper against wood as they both looked down at the blank page.

“Do you even realize what you did?”

Callie raised an eyebrow. “What I did? What about out there?” She gestured toward outside. “It’s quite sparsely populated these days.”

“That’s not the same.”

“Is it?”

“Empty isn’t dead!”

“Isn’t it? Does that change when the emptiness persists? And who is responsible for filling it?”

“It isn’t that simple.”

“Define ‘existence’.”

“That’s no easier.” The other shook her head. “This is bigger than you understand.”

“Many things are. I wonder whether it’s larger than you understand, as well. Otherwise, why are you here?”

“Because of that, for one!” The other pointed to the paper on the table. “That’s worse than killing someone.”

Callie focused intently on her guest, sensing the first true ingress into the heart of this mess. “Do tell.”

“Why should I? You already guessed or you wouldn’t have done it.”

Callie leaned forward. “I want my life back. I’ll do whatever necessary to protect my existence. Including cleaning up your messes.”

“Oh don’t even try to blame me for Z’Aria.”

“I don’t have to.” Callie smiled. “The evidence is right there, gone from the page.”

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Jan 22 2011

brain-bruising weekend links

Published by under follow the link chain,Writing

So if any of you writers missed the link last week to The Business Rusch series, don’t forget to read that — and then read this one, all the way through: Killing the Sacred Cows of Publishing, by Dean Wesley Smith. Seriously, even if — or especially if — you get angry about or disagree with some of what’s written within, read all the chapters. And then think about them. Some very good points about writing-as-business and some hard truths about agents and the industry.

And in the realm of the world being stranger than fiction, check out this link about pornography for pandas.

And if you haven’t already done so, check out Andrea O’Sullivan’s new website complete with shopping cart at Natural Obsessions Fiber! Amazing and vivid fiber art for your spinning and knitting needs.

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Jan 15 2011

weird weekend links

Fun article reminiscent of Fortean Times, about the possibility that our moon is an artificial satellite. They didn’t convince me, but the arguments were intriguing…

Seen a couple of places, thunderstorms on earth produce antimatter

OKCupid argues that the mathematics of beauty suggest you should be yourself, warts and all.

Forget the Galapagos turtle, or sequoia tree, bacteria are the longest lived organic life form we’ve discovered to date — try 34000 years on for size…

And for the writers, two things you should be reading, both by Kristine Kathryn Rusch:
The Business Rusch
The Freelancer’s Survival Guide

5 responses so far

Jan 14 2011

Quickie Question: writing and routine

I have a couple of longer Cancer Chronicles posts brewing, but no brain for longer things this week. So I will throw out a quick question instead, for any writers reading as well as anyone else who regularly uses established routines to create art or get larger projects done.

What are the ways that you continue to create/work on projects when life inevitably brings disruption to those normal routines? How do you (personally) quickly get back on the wagon if those disruptions do interrupt your work?

I recognize that part of my problem is working with a bit less than a healthy person’s energy levels while trying to do as much or more than said person’s average workload. So I’m not castigating myself for struggling with juggling. However, writing regularly seems to be the thing that falls off first when major routine disruptions (like a month of travel and holiday busy-ness) happen, and that’s less ideal. My ideas for solving this are mostly nebulous (other than what I’m already trying of setting small daily/weekly goals and working up from there), and I’d like to hear how other people manage such things (or don’t).

(Also also note: I’m griping about lack of momentum during a week where I finished a novel chapter, revised a story and sent it to the writer’s group, and wrote this post. So we aren’t talking NO progress here, just not what I’d feel more satisfied and less stressed about getting done.)

Looking forward to your comments!

4 responses so far

Jan 04 2011

new year weekend links

This article made me quite happy to read, I giggled and ranted and cheered all the way through — which sounds like I’m taking delight in the problems of scientists, but it’s a bit different from that. I have been saying since high school that there are some serious flaws within the scientific method (because after all, scientists are still HUMAN) and have had a bunch of arguments with other science-minded types who treat the scientific method with religious-like faith and awe and have a hard time hearing about the flaws. My specific arguments have been mostly based around the author’s middle point of “an equally significant issue is the selective reporting of results—the data that scientists choose to document in the first place” but the other reasons for the “decline effect” around the scientific method mentioned in the article are also strong and interesting. I think we can fix most of the current flaws (except for the randomization argument) given the advances in technology and information sharing we now have, assuming scientists are willing to acknowledge their own biases on the issue. Go read, come back and let’s discuss in comments!

Awesome list from Cat Rambo about the 10 books she recommends to any writer focusing on craft.

An interesting read about how ebooks might affect the publishing industry from someone IN the publishing industry, including a nice contrasting of difference in format versus difference in form.

Thoughts on a “writer’s platform” and how people are Doin’ It Wrong.

It’s been a couple of weeks since I’ve posted about WikiLeaks, I was a bit surprised no one commented on the last links to the reasoned other-side-of-the-coin arguments I posted, so go back and read if you missed them! This one is a short-and-to-the-point pro-WikiLeaks post from Nathaniel Eliot (also known as my beloved husband). Discuss there or here!

Haven’t done cancer links in a while, but had two people send me links to the big C news of the week: blood test for cancer is now entering clinical trials.

This one just made me happy to read, I like when people get obsessed and do neat sciency things with that hyperfocus…article on learning more about flying from birds

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Jan 02 2011

leftover weekend links

Rocket Scientists are funny: how much would it really take to blow up a planet?

A nicely balanced post on the e-publishing trend and where it still has to go

For my writer friends: I am not likely to have my novel both finished and edited in time but if YOU have one…Angry Robot Books is allowing unagented novel submissions in March 2011.

A blog written by an autistic woman in the Pacific Northwest that still has me thinking and introspecting after reading it.

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