Write. Edit. Share. Repeat.

About writing, editing, publishing & getting it out there

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Whatcha reading today?

Walrus mosaic in subway 013113This is my ongoing, regular challenge to authors and bloggers to share about their work—or to share about others’ work that they’re enjoying.

This week I’m finishing up The Icarus Deception by Seth Godin, finally. And I’m a good chunk of the way into The Painted Girls by Cathy Marie Buchanan, a terrific story about some of the dancers who were painted by Degas. I wrote on GoodReads earlier this week about how I was suckered into a free book “event” and was horrified by the many, many typos, not to mention a bad plot. Painted girls cover

I’ll give the author a break and not mention his name here, but you can see it on my GoodReads page if you follow me. Please, please, please, if you want to be a writer and you are going to put your book out there, have someone who’s qualified read it. Of course I would like people to use me as an editor; that’s what I do for a living. But if you’re broke, I understand–just get some intelligent friends to help. It’s embarrassing.

Call to action: Post a link, a one- or two-line description of what you’re reading (book or blog) and a few words about why you like it. Or you can post something freaky, funny or horrible you just read—go for it!

Question of the day: Who was your favorite childhood author (and why)?

Please share!

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Whatcha reading? Should we check it out?

Walrus mosaic in subway 013113This is my ongoing, periodic challenge to authors and bloggers to share about their work—or share about others’ work that they’re enjoying.

Post a link, a one- or two-line description of the piece and a few words about why you like it. Or you can post something freaky, funny or horrible you just read—go for it!

Question of the day: Do you start a new book if you’re already reading one? (If yes, how many books are you in the midst of now? For me it’s four, although I’m actively flipping between two at the moment, one on my Android Kindle and one on my Nook).

Please share! I hope to build some momentum on this.

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Discovering GoodReads

Painted girls coverI’ve been spending a little time getting to know GoodReads, but for now the site’s still a bit of a mystery to me. As with every new social media site, I take my time jumping in. I know. I’m way, way behind the crowd. I always think I have too much on my plate already. In reality, I probably do, but since I like to read, I figured I should at least check it out.

My initial foray involved creating a 2013 reading challenge for myself (100 books), and joining two groups. One’s called “52 weeks, 52 books,” the other one is called “Booksy Cup Freebies and Bargains.” I’m not really sure what “Booksy Cup” is. I’m sure it’s explained somewhere; I think it’s the name of the moderator’s blog.

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Srsly?

In an online forum about grammar, one person complained about bad grammar in texting:

What makes people think it’s all right to drop all usage and grammar rules when texting or messaging? If I see one more “u” I’ll scream. Ugh. Don’t write how you talk. It makes you look like an idiot. I don’t have a qwerty keyboard; I have a flip phone & I text using T9. I care about the language enough not to butcher it no matter what I’m doing.

(Note: I didn’t know what T9 was, so if she was complaining that abbreviations and slang make texts hard to understand, she lost me.) Read More

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Shameless, self-serving “altruism”?

Jan Arzooman

Tweet, Tweet & Retweet were on a boat. Tweet & Tweet jumped off …

A few months ago, I was on the bus to work, bored and looking for something fun to read. I tweeted on my Android, “Does anyone have an interesting blog today? Share it with me; I’ll tweet about the one I find most interesting.” I wasn’t looking for anything specific—in the mood I was in, I probably would have preferred non-fiction—but I only got one response, from an erotic fiction writer whose blog was the second chapter of her book. Her style wasn’t what I was looking for, but I’d sort of promised to consider anyone who responded, so I read the first part and then the chapter she’d linked me to.

No one else answered my tweet, so she “won” my “call for submissions.” I tweeted a congratulatory note that my heart was not completely in, but I’d promised, so I delivered. Read More

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Book-loving fools, part 2

I wanted to follow-up on what I wrote the other day about my occasional insecurities about what I haven’t read. I’ve read plenty, believe me. Can I sit here and tell you exactly why I like certain authors? I don’t know if I could do that. I know I like Margaret Atwood because she has this fantastic ability to make her characters and settings so real, not to mention sympathetic, even in her science fiction/dystopian novels. She must do an enormous amount of research to make her stories authentic. I have liked every book of hers that I’ve read so far.

Joyce Carol Oates is another of my favorites. I have this feeling that she gets an idea in her head for a story and says, “That might be an interesting scenario. How can I make it believable?” Oates has been a hero of mine for years, just because she seems to write constantly–a behavior I’ve never quite achieved, as much as I’ve aimed for it and keep trying for it. I tell all writers that if they have the urge to write, just write. It  may or may not be good, but you should get it out there.

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Book-loving fools

The other day I struck up a conversation with a guy who, like me, had a background in news reporting. He had been in TV while I’d been in newspapers, but there was plenty of common ground and we talked for a while about the business and how it’s changed. Publishing, of course, has also changed and continues to change.

The conversation soon shifted to books and literature, probably because I’d mentioned that I was a copy editor. Have you ever had one of these conversations where you feel you’ve met a kindred soul–another person who loves to read and has read some of your favorite authors, so you can actually talk about them? These days, with the internet and a thousand other distractions, that doesn’t happen often enough and I’m thrilled when it does.

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