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Showing posts from January, 2015

Dealing With Rejection

Alright, let's talk this week about one of the awful truths of the publishing industry. Rejection. Yep. It happens to the best of writers--and to the rest of us as well. For example, C.S. Lewis was rejected over 800 times before he finally found a home for his Narnian Chronicles.

I got my first rejection letter when I was 16. It was for my Bonds of Blood, Bonds of Steel book. (More on that book's odyssey at a later date--when I feel up to it.) It was from TSR, which back then used to be in Milwaukee, Wisconsin and used to publish original fiction. Now, as most gamers know, TSR publishes only game tie-ins for their Forgotten Realms, D&D and WOTC lines. Ah well. I tried.

I've gotten rejected by all the big names in both publishing and agents. In the 90's when I first starting trying to see my name in print, the big guys were the only game in town. So, I have very nice paper rejections from DAW, Del Rey, Tor, Little Brown and Company, and a host of other imprints. Th…

Why None of My Characters Have Pets...

It's been a long week on the pet front in this house. My fourteen year old beagle-German shepherd mix has been sick and I was really worried that it was the beginning of the end. He's ok, by the way. Well, as ok as a furry old man can be when the temperatures dip below freezing. However, I realized on the way back from the vet yesterday that with one exception, none of my characters have pets.

Robyn, in The Star Circle Trilogy, is the only exception to that. In book one The Shattered Prism, she rescues a kotu, a little squirrel-like critter with Fennic fox like ears. She names him Jeric and the little rodent sticks with her like a cocklebur. None of my other characters in all of my other books don't have any pets which I thought was odd because I love my dogs. Alright, one other character in The Star Circle Trilogy gets turned into a cat, but she wasn't anyone's kitty.

I realized it's because honestly to be a main character in a book your life kind of has to s…

Make Sure Your Slip Isn't Showing!

I love the musical Les Miserable and I've seen it several times in several different theaters from several different vantage points. The first time was when I was in high school and the only seat I could afford was second row in the nosebleeds. I loved every second of it. Years later, same theater. same play, much different seats--fifth row orchestra. It wasn't nearly as magical this time around. When I was back in the nosebleed section I couldn't see the structure of the performance only the story. When I was up close I could see every wire, every microphone and the artificiality of the make up. That was the problem--I could see those behind the scenes details and it ruined the illusion for me. Something to keep in mind for writing.

Every author should think about structure. Whether they're a plotter with meticulous timelines, maps and outlines or a pantser who knows pretty much where things are going, but no clue how to get there, we all need to think about the stru…