Weird and wonderful

Weird and wonderful

Neglecting the blog again, because life is changing swiftly, and if I say that something is one way today it may be completely different tomorrow, so it seems like I should mostly just shut up for a while. It is all weird and wonderful, though, which is exactly how I prefer life to be.

A couple of updates are in order, though.

Clarion application update: I finally finished a draft and am in Deep Editing mode on “And If They Have Not Died, They Are Living Still.” I have my crits back on “Habitat” and know how I’m going to change it, and I think it will not take long to fix. It’s TALS that is the time sink. This is because it is the most sophisticated story I’ve ever attempted, which may not be saying much, of course. I’m muddling along, trying to make it work the way I think it should. I have no idea whether I’ll succeed. Adam is waving his red pen at me from across the miles, which helps. At least I know I have backup.

Slushery: Wow. Learning a lot. Considering my own reasons for rejecting stories makes it easy to see why others are rejecting mine. The biggest thing I’ve learned so far to look for is tension, a reason to move on to the next paragraph or turn the page. I’d say at least half the stories I see simply lack tension.

Podcast: Have you been listening? The interview with Paolo Bacigalupi that aired on Monday was amazing. If you haven’t checked it out yet, here’s what you’ve missed (still available, forever and always, at the Tor.com site):

Episode 1: Zombie, Video Games, and the End of the World! Guest: Chet Faliszek
Episode 2: Bacigalupilooza! Guest: Paolo Bacigalupi

Upcoming episodes:

Monday January 18, 2010: Episode 3: Robots! War Machines! Robolobsters!
Guest: P.W. Singer
Monday January 25, 2010: Episode 4: Comics, Romance and Mermen
Guest: Marjorie M. Liu
Monday February 1, 2010: Episode 5: Untitled
Guest: Brian Dunning of Skeptoid

Episode 6 is Still a Secret, because the guest hasn’t been confirmed yet, but if they get who they plan to get, the Podtern will squee.

Life: This weekend brings the teenager’s birthday party, recompense to the wee one for putting her through a terribly boring weekend two weeks ago, and yard clean-up in anticipation of El Nino, which is supposed to kick California’s ass over the next three weeks. And I *hope* some recording, slushing, editing, general minioning, and who knows, maybe watch a movie or play a video game, but I’m not holding my breath. Family first, commitments second, creative outlet third, R&R last.

Life just turns on a dime sometimes. And really, it’s all very weird. And very wonderful indeed.

2 thoughts on “Weird and wonderful

  1. That’s a really good observation about tension. I hadn’t consciously identified that in my own slush reading but I notice I’ve been more aware of it lately. Now I can’t wait for my slush period to open back up.

  2. Good point on lack of tension. If I’m reading something that lacks tension, it doesn’t occur to me that that’s the problem. I just think, “who cares?” and toss it aside.

    Having said that, I don’t know who you slush for (if you told me, I forgot), but I hope one of my stories didn’t make you say, “This thing has lack of tension written all over it!” Unless, of course, we’re talking about my story, “Lack of Tension,” which is supposed to have lack of tension written all over it. Like in the middle of the first page and in the upper right hand corner of all of the succeeding pages.

    Reading slush is going to make you a better writer faster.

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