Friday, January 25, 2008

News about Books, Writing, Authors, Etc.

I was surfing the internet looking for a good site to recommend for news and information for writers (and readers). I wanted to recommend a site for you that would contain all sorts of information--news about books and writing, author interviews and websites, book reviews, lists, awards, and so forth. It seems to me that an excellent site for all this is one I have referred to in passing before: They have lots of pages on different topics dealing with writing and books and also a lot of links to other sites that you may find interesting and useful. Explore the site and I am sure you will find things you like!

Some examples:

Click here to see BookSpot's bestseller page with links to a number of bestseller lists, all gathered together for your convenience.

Click here for information about various book awards.

There are lists of various kinds, such as one for the best of outdoor literature. This one has a brief review of each book on the list.

BookSpot has, on their home page, some Must-See sites, which link to places like BookPage, Bookwire, and Bookreporter, where you will find news, author interviews, and book reviews, plus articles of various kinds.

There are also links for writers here.

This is an enjoyable site with lots of information and links gathered up in one place. I think you will enjoy it a lot.

Saturday, January 19, 2008

Some Tips on Finding Time to Write

I found a helpful article at called "I Could Be a Writer--If I Only Had the Time!". It's by Roberta Roesch and has some ideas for managing your time so that you can do the writing you want to do. She gives 10 tips for getting your writing life underway, starting with writing yourself a mission statement and ending with proceeding a step at a time. You might find some help there, so check it out.

The Writing-World website has a number of useful articles that cover a wide variety of topics. Sometimes articles like these can give you ideas of your own and give you that little bit of encouragement you need to take the next step in your writing career. Even if your goal isn't to be published, you will find articles that will help you with the writing itself.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

What Do You Like to Read?

What is your favorite reading material?

I love a good mystery. I enjoy Tony Hillerman's Joe Leaphorn/Jim Chee novels, Margaret Frazer's Dame Frevisse novels, and Agatha Christie's Hercule Poirot novels. There are lots of others, of course. I like fantasy novels and some science fiction. Essays and poetry are good to read, too. I like the essays to make sense and the poetry to follow the traditional forms and to be intelligible, also. You might say I'm a traditionalist.

I like non-fiction, too. In addition to essays, I like history books, political books, science books, nature books, all sorts of books! Biographies are good and I enjoy books about writing and literature. Religious books are important to me, as well.

English literature and history are favorites, and I especially enjoy English medieval history. Colonial America is very interesting to me. When you get right down to it, I like to read about most subjects and most times and places.

What I tend to object to in reading material is violence, sex, and bad language. I object to unhappy endings and depressing scenarios. I want to read about people and how they overcome their trials, not how they are overcome by them! I also don't care to read experimental stuff that's just weird, but is labeled as art. If no one can understand it, or if it's offensive, how can it be art? I'm sure there are arguments about that, but they are lost on me. I think art, whether it is visual, written, or musical, should be uplifting and/or thought-provoking (If you can't understand it, how can it provoke a thought?).

Be that as it may, I think there is plenty of good material out there for me to read and study and enjoy without torturing myself with "gritty realism" and depressing endings.

I love to read writing books, too. They inspire me and often give me ideas. They teach me about terms and how-tos and give useful advice.

So, what do you like to read?

Saturday, January 12, 2008

A Variety of Writing Articles

Check out this page at the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America, Inc., website. Some are humorous, but most are serious instruction for writers. You'll enjoy it and learn at the same time.

There are all kinds of websites on the internet that contain the books and stories of various writers and styles of writing. If the copyright is expired, you may find it on the web. Two examples are Anton Chekov and Sarah Orne Jewett for individual writers. For a variety of material, check out Bartleby and Great Books and Classics for two of many sites. Another source is Wikipedia which often has links to websites and/or articles at the ends of their entries. They also have textbooks (check the bottom of the main page that I've linked to) and other materials. It's good to read examples of different kinds of writing to help you with your own writing.

Tuesday, January 1, 2008

William Drummond, of Hawthornden. 1585–1649

Change should breed Change

NEW doth the sun appear,

The mountains' snows decay,

Crown'd with frail flowers forth comes the baby year.

My soul, time posts away;

And thou yet in that frost

Which flower and fruit hath lost,

As if all here immortal were, dost stay.

For shame! thy powers awake,

Look to that Heaven which never night makes black,

And there at that immortal sun's bright rays,

Deck thee with flowers which fear not rage of days!