I really admire this classic post by Neil Gaiman. I'm going to quote liberally because I like it so much. This is in response to a fan who is pissed that George R.R. Martin is blogging about things rather than being hard at work on the next book in his series, and WHY should GRRM be doing anything other than creating the thing that this reader wants? Neil says, in part:
"You don't choose what will work. You simply do the best you can each time. And you try to do what you can to increase the likelihood that good art will be created.And the most important takeaway? "George R.R. Martin is Not Your Bitch."
And sometimes, and it's as true of authors as it is of readers, you have a life. People in your world get sick or die. You fall in love, or out of love. You move house. Your aunt comes to stay. You agreed to give a talk half-way around the world five years ago, and suddenly you realise that that talk is due now. Your last book comes out and the critics vociferously hated it and now you simply don't feel like writing another. Your cat learns to levitate and the matter must be properly documented and investigated. There are deer in the apple orchard. A thunderstorm fries your hard disk and fries the backup drive as well...
And life is a good thing for a writer. It's where we get our raw material, for a start. We quite like to stop and watch it."
A wonderful review of Kate Messner & Brian Floca's MARTY McGUIRE is up on Fuse #8:
"When it comes down to it, this isn’t your typical early chapter book. Messner likes to upset expectations once in a while... It’s a smart little novel that uses just as many words as it needs to. No more. No less. For those seeking relief from the onslaught of ubiquitous royalty, here is the answer to your prayers."***********
Author Extraordinaire Saundra Mitchell had great points to make about aggressive book-blogger schwag-tactics in her recent post, "The Shake-Down." Remember:
"Most authors, even big name authors, have to pay for their own schwag. We pay for it to be designed and to be printed. We pay for the books that we send out on request. When we give away other authors’ books, we pay for those, too. And of course, we pay the postage. So when I’m figuring my budget, I have to decide when and where to spend that money very carefully... It’s a tricky, symbiotic relationship we have going on online right now. And I know we’re all still trying to figure out how it all fits, and works together...************
Finally, at 7-Imps, Jules has posted a terrific profile of two of my favorite (nonclient) illustrators, Sophie Blackall and Lauren Castillo. Ohhhh man their stuff is adorable. Please take a look.
ARE YOU AWAKE in particular makes me crack up:
BECAUSE HE’S FLYING A PLANE.”
Is it morning yet? NO. Why isn’t it? BECAUSE IT’S STILL NIGHTTIME.”