Nathan Bransford, Author

Friday, April 14, 2017

This week in books 4/14/17

Photo by me. Follow me on Instagram! @nathanbransford
Five posts in five days?

"This week in books" posted actually, ya know, weekly?


Guys we're doing this. Lots of fun things afoot. I'm focused on all this full time and I'd love to hear any thoughts and ideas you have for making this place better. Topics? Posting frequency? More cowbell space monkeys?

Now then! I spotted some good links around the Internet and, well, here they are:

Pulitzers were announced! And the big winner for fiction was none other than Colson Whitehead for his much-praised Underground Railroad. Congratulations!!

"Worldbuilding" is a phrase that's tossed around a lot, but what does it really mean? How much is it really necessary? Over at Electric Literature, Lincoln Michel makes the case that the entire concept is overrated.

The Verge had a great interview with John Scalzi about his ten-year book deal, the future of publishing, and his struggles writing in the age of Trump.

The New York Times is broadening its books coverage, with new contributors and columnists. Thumbs up to that one. (via The Millions)

Have you participated in #pitmad? Agent Jessica Faust at BookEnds thinks it's all fine and dandy but don't neglect your actual query time.

Also from BookEnds: The Top 10 reasons your submission got rejected (which actually has twelve reasons).


And this is a sponsored post but who cares when it's called 10 great books for booze loving book nerds.

This week in the Forums (redesigned! de-spamified!)...

Have you self-published audio?
How do you get yourself out of a writing rut?
Nominate Your First Page for a Critique on the Blog!
Nominate Your Query for a Critique on the Blog!
Ask Nathan (I'm back baby!)

Comment! of! the! Week! goes to Jennifer Hubbard, who artfully took my "life of the writer" post on rejecting other people's "script" for you and used it for some very good writing advice:
This is also a useful concept for writing, because we can improve our dialogue by not letting it fall into recitations of rote scripts, and seeking where we can cut the scripts of have the characters break them. 
And finally...

What's that you say? Disney is filing a patent for "Westworld"-style soft humanoids?

Yeah everything is fine.

Have a great weekend!

I’m available for manuscript edits, query critiques, and consultations! And if you like this post, check out my guide to writing a novel.


Kia Abdullah said...

I'm so pleased you'll be posting here more often.

TOPIC SUGGESTION: What author has most disturbed you? There are some obvious ones like Bret Easton Ellis (American Psycho) and Iain Banks (The Wasp Factory), but the author that has disturbed me most is Richard Laymon. I read a few of his books when I was younger (Endless Night, Island, Quake) and, yikes, they still make me feel queasy. Clearly, there was a sick attraction though since I read more than one...

Bryan Russell said...

Seems like old times...

Jennifer R. Hubbard said...

Thanks for the nod!

There are so many different kinds of social media out there now. But I still like blogs. I still value the space to develop a train of thought--whether long or short, with or without pictures--and then to host comments on that post which all participants in a conversation can see. So, glad to see you posting regularly again.

JOHN T. SHEA said...

All very interesting, particularly the worldbuilding article. It reminded me of your March 23rd post “Stop thinking and start doing”. I instanced God's creation (no less!) in my comment.

Much theology is in fact literary analysis and criticism applied to ancient scriptures. And one complaint about the Bible and Judeo-Christian beliefs is that the Universe seems too big for the narrative. Apart from the start of Genesis, the Bible takes place entirely in a small area of the Middle East. So what are all the billions of stars for?

It's a criticism based on a sense of proportion and has a certain appeal. Nonetheless, I would ask in return how much smaller the Universe would have to be to provide a proportionate background for the Bible. Even the Earth alone might be too big!

I'll stop my sermon there and congratulate Jennifer Hubbard on her wise Comment of the Week.

JOHN T. SHEA said...

I also second Jennifer Hubbard's comment above about social media. I really did request more space monkeys in my response to Nathan's survey, but it's the space and comments that make blogs more nourishing than Twitter or Facebook. But people seem to prefer VERY short form media at the moment. I've only recently joined Twitter and am still figuring it out. I do note that Nathan has 100,000 Twitter followers yet I've been the only commenter on some recent posts on this blog and I've found myself alone with a spider and a bot or two some nights on the Forums (scary!). Mind you, I've yet to start my own blog...

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