December Roundup

As we enter this cold, cold month of December, I feel like it might be a good time to do another roundup. It also occurs to me that calling it a December Roundup implies that I’m rounding up everything that happened in December, which is not, um, something I am capable of at this time.

But I can talk about what all’s going in my writing and reading world. If you crave more exclusive stuff, then you’ll just have to subscribe to my newsletter.

Writing Corner

The big event this month is that I’m hosting a talk about Kickstarters with Tao Wong on December 2nd. This is part of the ongoing Nebula Award Conference, and anyone can still join us. The conference itself records all kinds of useful material for writers, and it’s a great opportunity to meet others in this strange, strange career.

November was National Novel Writing Month, which means that a lot of authors are driving themselves at or beyond the point of insanity. NaNoWriMo is a fantastic tool that allows writers to prioritize their writing.

But it’s not for me.

First of all, I prioritize my writing already. I write every morning on weekdays, and I edit in the afternoons. It’s a schedule that I find very comfortable, and I can accomplish what I want without too much stress. It also leaves me enough time to do other things that are important to me, which is kinda nice. A month with writing as a higher priority would just be… out of balance.

Second, when I write to fast I tend to write garbage. Yeah, I know I could probably improve on that front, but past experiments have shown that pushing for more words just leads to more editing down the road. I love editing, but there’s a certain point where the blank page is preferable.

They say that you can’t edit a blank page, but the benefit is that you don’t have to.

Not Done Yet: Sci-fi Stories of Wisdom and Fury released last month and it went great. I’m thrilled with how many hardcover orders I got (they came out REALLY well, so I think they’ll make outstanding gifts this season). Ebook sales are a little low, but this isn’t one that I’m really pushing for ebooks. It think it’ll be a good one for bookstores and hand selling at conventions. It’s also great that these stories can be back in the world again. Many of them are pretty difficult to find.

I owe the world an end-of-year wrap up with my awards eligible works. There aren’t a lot this year, but I’m a firm believer in getting stuff out there. Writers should be proud of everything they get published, right?

Reading Corner

Okay, I’m four books behind schedule in my goal to hit 100 books this year, but to be fair 100 is a lot of books. I’ve read some long ones, too, and really, that’s not such a bad thing. Last month I was six books behind, so maybe I’m catching up.

This month’s giveaway is full of great stuff. I hope you’ll check it out. I know a lot of people are trying to save money before the holidays, and these giveaways are just an excellent way to try out new authors and new worlds without spending too much… Then when someone gives you those Amazon gift cards you’ll know what to use them on.

The Mimicking of Known Successes by Malka Older is a sci-fi mystery, and you know I love those. It’s got a big slice of a Sherlock vibe with some sapphic romance mixed in just for fun. It’s got trains, genetic engineering, and a big conspiracy. What more could you possibly want?The Mimicking of Known Successes book cover
Emergent Properties cover. Emergent Properties by Aimee Ogden is an AI story and also another sci-fi mystery. It’s well constructed and full of some amazing scenery. Maybe I should just start reading mysteries.
The Bright Ages by Matthew Gabriele and David M. Perry was my nonfiction read for the month. It recontextualizes the Dark Ages and argues that we’re really not giving that era of history the credit it deserves. I’m not great with names or dates, but the info here is fantastic and they make some really good points. Definitely worth a read.The Bright Ages book cover

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