Sunday, January 31, 2010

More contributors on board

Two new additions to the line-up...Mur Lafferty of podcast fame and Robert Kroese, an independent author who knocked the socks of the ebook market with Mercury Falls. There will be a David Morrell interview from David J. Montgomery and Jonathan Maberry has contributed four articles, including actual query letters that led to major sales. Authors are amazing!

No decent writing blog would be complete without musing on the effects of the Macmillan vs. Amazon tiff currently brewing, and while those impacts will directly affect writers of the future, I have my personal opinion on my regular blog and also recommend JA Konrath's blog for coverage. of course, also check out Macmillan's statement. Amazon is mum so far.

I will point out the only way Write Good or Die could exist is through the ease of digital distribution and the generosity of successful authors. If this had to be printed, it wouldn't get funded, because I'd have to make the money back, and it would be too much work, and you'd have to pay for free advice. That speaks to the power of ebooks and the digital age, and I fully embrace it.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Konrath/Kilborn rockin' the Casbah

JA Konrath just announced a slew of big news/breakthroughs on his newbie blog. He talks a lot about luck--but he's the kind of hard-working guy that always has time to help people. That's part of his charm, and part of his success--the heart.

I was putting together a comic anthology, a small project by any stretch, and asked Joe to contribute because his name would help sell the project. It ended up in the "Little Shivers" comic for 8-to-12-year-olds. Joe donated his cut of proceeds to promote the book.

When I approached him about contributing to "Write Good or die," he said, "Sure, grab my newbie guide and use anything you want." He talks about luck, but he makes luck. I am thrilled to have him as part of this experiment. When you look for writing role models, this is where to look.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Beyond inspiration

There are plenty of writing books out there intended to make you feel good while you're sitting in a coffee shop thinking about writing. I know, I have a few. Inspirational books are pretty much useless. If you need to work to be inspired, I suggest you stick with your beret and your analysis of Joyce and Faulkner.

All the writers I know, the real ones, ooze sweat and blood and ink, and when they're not working, they're thinking about the fact that they're not working. It's another reality of my experience that these hard-working writers are typically among the most generous. They are so busy that they can't NOT help writers. It's part of their world, an ingredient in their winning formula, and a symbol of their gratitude for all who have gone before. Yeah, I know, it doesn't make sense--never give away what you get paid to do.

Yet the contributors to "Write Good or Die" are doing exactly that. Even more incredible, they are basically creating competition for themselves. No matter how many times you tell yourself that more and better books means more and hungrier readers, you are still encouraging the creation of new successful writers. Given the realities of the publishing business, there is not room for everyone on those bookstore shelves or publisher rosters. The last thing established writers should want is for new writers to learn from them, their mistakes, their triumphs, their career paths, their techniques. But here they are, with more arriving as we go. I think all these people are crazy, and I love them for it.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

final cover art

Something to do while finishing the novel...

cover art

Here's the cover art for "Write Good Or Die," a composite of pieces by Kewber from the Dirt comic book series. Lettering and color to follow.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Write Good Or Die

This is a blog to support the ever-changing, evolving downloadable writing guide "Write Good Or Die: Survival Tips For 21st Century Writers." The free ebook will offer insight from a number of established writers, including Kevin J. Anderson, Jonathan Maberry, J.A. Konrath, David Montgomery, Elizabeth Massie, and more, with a focus on succeeding in the modern publishing environment and the electronic age.

Since the book can easily be updated, the plan is to release in the spring of 2010 and continue adding material to it as more authors join the ranks. The blog offers a chance to discuss some of the issues that arise, including hot topics such as "When Is A Book Finished?," "Getting An Agent" (yeah, that's still #1 of the most-asked writing questions),"Should I Self-Publish?" and another biggie, "Should I Write Or Should I Just Be Happy?"

Stay tuned for more information as the book evolves.

Scott Nicholson
Editor, Write Good Or Die