11 Jun

Friday Links: The Eternal Show vs Tell-Debate

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‘Telling the reader’ means giving the reader the conclusion they would draw, without giving them any of the actions or thoughts or descriptions that would lead them to that conclusion.

Yeah, Patricia C Wrede knows how it is. And should be writing writing books for a living. In addition to her fantasy, of course. But, failing that, we’ve got her blog to turn to. Read More

04 Jun

Friday Links: Confessions of a Clarkesworld Slush Reader

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Why did my story get rejected?

This is a forum thread in the form of an AMA by an (ex-)Clarkesworld slush reader.

Lots of interesting analysis of short fiction markets in general and Clarkesworld in particular. Great if you’re submitting or planning to submit to the big mags.

Pay close attention to the “I slushed 2000 stories, passed up 150-300 to the editor, and none of those got published.” Read More

24 May

Monday Musings: Learn from Your Mistakes, Forgive Your Failures

Sometimes the world kicks you.

Sometimes you stumble, slip, fall down. Best intentions are only that, intentions. Sometimes they fail.

The key isn’t to be eternally successful. The key is to be kind to yourself when you fail. Learning to forgive yourself is a skill. Forgiving yourself is a skill, too, but you can’t start with it. You have to start by learning how to learn it.

Forgiveness is tough. We learn to forgive others. We’re taught to do it, forced to do it, but rarely does anyone take us aside and tell us to be kind to ourselves.

Instead, we internalize the critical voices, the ones that tell us what we should do, absolutely must do, least we end up outcasts, alone, hated, bereft. Read More

10 May

Never Live Like You’d Die Tomorrow

Pop psychology is full of pithy seize the day quotes. The purpose of life is to live it, to taste each experience to the utmost. Memento mori. Live like you would die tomorrow.

If I knew I’d die tomorrow, I’d spend the day playing video games, bingeing on chocolates, and wailing that life wasn’t fair.

If I lived this way every day, I’d get obese, depressed, and likely would die tomorrow. Read More