Episode 31 - I Reject your Rejection
Works in Progress
[00:00:29] John is behind for NaNoWriMo. 7874 of 16044 as of Day 12. Eric's inspirational tweets have not been very helpful, not even the Dalek Relaxation Tape. Eric recommends getting a quiet weekend with a jar of STEEM Caffeinated Peanut Butter
Mike has about 12k words written for Zero Ward, which may be the worst story to do for NaNo because it's so brutal to write. There is so much factual and historical information needed for the story that it makes it difficult to get the words down. Eric coached Mike to try the Bob Ross Lipsum, although Mike prefers the Samuel L. Jackson Lipsum generator
Eric is working on the rewrite of Don't Wake Up. He is amping up the conflict, suspense and danger to his charactrs. The first seven chapters are with his wife for editorial review. His NaNoWriMo self-coaching is to skip NaNo writing and become a coach instead.
What's happening online
Knausgaard Can't Stop Writing
[00:07:01] Why Karl Ove Knausgaard Can’t Stop Writing is an article in the Wall Street Journal. Karl Ove Knausgaard wrote a 3,600 page biography called My Struggle. After publishing the 6-volume set, his family (on his father's side) no longer speaks to him.
In my world there is something wrong with people who are writers. If someone wants to write, that means there is something incomplete in them. If they’re writers, it’s a certain sign of unhappiness.
—Karl Ove Knausgaard
Write it Down / Minimizing Procrastination
Eric mentioned a post called Write it Down by Karan Sikka. Human beings are great at self-deception, and the only way to really know where you spend your time is to write it down.
The guide How to Minimize Procrastination was a great procrastination tool for its author, but there are a number of great tools and neuroscience on the art of procrastination.
Sharing your Name
[00:11:50] Steve Laube got a letter from a reader in which the reader said:
Although I have been cultivating my online presence as a writer, I have found that someone who shares my name already has a significant online presence. This person does not live a Christian lifestyle: in fact, I would be terribly embarrassed and my professional integrity could be harmed if anyone mistook me for this individual.
When You Share a Name with Another Person is a great post on some of the benefits to using a pen name, as well as when it's appropriate.
Apocalypse Weird's parent group shutting down
[00:13:19] Once Wonderment, the group behind Apocalypse Weird is shutting down.
There is very little in the newsletter as to why they are disbanding. Most of the authors seem to be continuing their storylines on their own, including Nice Cole who will write a total of 12 books in his part of the Weird world.
From Nice Cole: "Two of the partners out of the six flaked on actually doing their jobs. Put too much stress on the rest of us."
"Actually it's going on as a collective. The writers are taking steps to purchase the whole thing and then make it available for everyone"
[00:14:39] Richard Brittain used the internet to find out everything about 18-year-old Paige Rolland after she left a 1-star review of his book "The World Rose" on Wattpad, an app where amateur writers post their works for review. He traveled 500 miles to the Asda store she worked at and smashed her on the back of the head with a wine bottle knocking her out and leaving a gash on her head.
Ain't no readin'. Only be writin'. At least for John and Mike.
WIP Wordpress plugin
[00:18:11] Just a quick mention of Dave's Whizmatronic Widgulating Calibrational Scribometer. This is a Wordpress plugin that allows you to update your website with your current works in progress and let your site visitors know how your work is coming along.
[00:18:56] Persona is character development software for Windows and Mac ($39.95). Using their archtypes, you create characters and see how they interact with each other based on their personalities. It's the interaction that really makes the app. How do characters get along, or are in conflict with one another.
There are a few quirky user interface items.
Mike made a parallel to the personas used for content marketing and understanding to whom your online message is being directed. He has 20-or-so persona sheets and sees the value in Persona as well.
[00:22:38] Query Tracker is a site for authors to track and rate agents to whom they send queries. The site allows authors to leave notes on the results of their submissions so other authors can learn how different agents responded.
Craft Talk - Rejection
[00:23:56] Eric got a letter from the agent for his submission of Prince of Pigeon Hill. It was a rejection, but, it was the nicest and most informative rejections. The rejection list came with some really good feedback that Eric can really use. His query alluded to something that didn't match up with the story, and perhaps that hurt his query and submission.
Destructive Readers on Reddit is a harsh wasteland of author's dreams, where rejection comes at you full-force. Readers there hold no punches. For some authors that's hard to take. Authors need to understand that the rejections are not of them personally, but of their work with the intent to make the work better.
Scribophile is less harsh, but it's a safe place. Writing groups can also be too friendly. Are these places doing authors a disservice by not providing harsh rejections?
Any feedback, of course, it just that. You aren't obligated to take the feedback and make the changes.
The #MSWL hashtag on Twitter (Manuscript Wish List) is a place for agents to ask for the types of manuscripts they are seeking. It's another good source (beside Query Tracker) for finding agents for your work.
Eric wonders how many rejections to take before going the self publishing route with Prince of Pigeon Hill. He doesn't want to wait for three years to get the book published. Mike says 1 and done - go for it right away. John says a dozen, as there's no harm in waiting to get some rejections (or a contract!) with it while Eric is working on other things.
Writing that Pays
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