What a field day for the heat
A thousand people in the street
Singing songs and carrying signs
Mostly saying, "hooray for our side"

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Linkee-poo gets out of the way

Edited to add real line breaks. Sorry about that, folks.

Gabrielle Harbowy, a real copy editor gives real copy editing advice. (Grokked from Jay Lake)

A query letter (someone else's) that works. Sometimes we too often demonstrate what goes wrong, but not often is it explained what goes right and why.

More bookshelf porn. This time from the Gollancz twitter feed. (Grokked from Matociquala)

Dr. Phil stamps the 500 submissions box on the writer's bingo card. Congrats on that Dr. Phil. Also, good to see the trend is accelerating. Mine looks like a bell curve as I moved back to writing novels.

And regarding submissions, Catherine Shaff-Stump brings us notes from a WisCon panel of how to handle rejection. "A very important piece of advice is keep your eyes on your own page. Don't compare your career to that of others. There are a variety of variables in a writing career." Oh, that's so easy to say, and so hard to put into practice. At least for me.

I.J. Parnham on someone comes to town, something happens, something changes. This is one of my weak points. I'm not sure I agree with "something needs to change" with every scene, at least in the way I think about characters changing. I do agree that if you could delete the scene and not affect the story, you should heavily consider deleting the scene. There are, however, sometimes scenes where things don't seem to change (and maybe having a discussion about what "change" means might help), but their the butterfly's wings flapping that bring about the hurricane in Act III.

Oldest and Fatherless, the terrible secret of Tom Bombadil. I'm one of the few Bombadil fans, I guess. While this post makes him seem like some kind of evil overlord waiting out his time in his jail, I'm not so sure. It's my interpretation that ol' Tom is none other than the Greenman Champion to Goldberry's Goddess. The ring has no effect on Bombadil. That's because Tom and Goldberry exist outside of the mythology Tolkien ripped off appropriated for most of the LotRs world. Tom and Goldberry are pre-current morality (nasty willows and barrow-wrights are a part of their world, notice there are no barrow-wrights elsewhere in the Middle-earth). But I could write a whole paper on that, and you don't want to be bored by it. (Grokked from Jay Lake)

Um, can to you tell I've been writing more? With all these links on writing lately, is my slip showing or is it just that all my good sources for articles are also focusing on writing advice? I don't know. Be here's to hoping it continues.

Here's more on how the world we leave on and in is freakier than we think. There's new data showing us glimpses into Earth's core, which aren't so much disproving earlier theories as they are refining them. Science is sometimes like focusing a telescope. When you first see something, it's kinda fuzzy and indistinct. But then you look and fiddle more and more resolution comes into the picture. You build a better telescope and you see even more detail. You throw it out in space so the light doesn't have to pass through our dense atmosphere and ZOMG! look at that!. (Grokked from Jay Lake)

Random Michelle shares some good points when asking your computer/technical/geeky friends for help.

"Another way of saying this is that most Americans are actually pro-choice even if they sometimes identify as pro-life." I've been saying that for years, and "pro-life" is a misnomer. It's the name of a movement, not a sentiment. And the movement stands for just more "end all abortion." What the "pro-choice" side has never figured out is the "pro-life" side isn't really about abortion rights (see previous links about "my abortion is necessary, and yours immoral"). They're not fighting that war, so arguing back about "access" and "rights" is missing the point, which is why we're seeing numbers like "… 50 percent of Americans now identify as pro-life." That's because nobody wants abortions. And since we've allowed the pro-life movement to keep the argument there, it looks like pro-choice is losing. Pro-life isn't about "limiting" abortion. They're about "no abortion, ever, for any reason." But why I say that the pro-life movement is not really about abortion is because of their other planks of "no birth control other than abstinence" and "no public sex education." You know, the two social movements that actually decrease the instances of abortion. If we could get beyond "just talking about abortion" to everything the "pro-lifers" stand for, you would see the numbers of people identifying as such drop dramatically. And the pro-life side knows this which is why they keep the focus on "reasonable restrictions on abortion." It's the same game as political speech that says, "we're going to cut government spending" but they never tell you exactly what they're going to cut. They know if they say the truth, nobody will vote for them. (Grokked from Jay Lake)

More on filming police officers in public. Just like any profession, there are very professional people, there is the vast majority of competent people who want to do their job right, and there's the minority that do it for the power rush. Many officers just want to do their job. Hell, they may even agree with you personally, but because of the uniform, they must enforce policy and do what is right from their viewpoint. (Grokked from Jay Lake)

Tweet of my heart:
@NateCrowder: @ChuckWendig I just think the EPA needs to go to Sesame Street and do some tests to find out why so many residents are felt & foam.


Jeri 2.0 said...

Thanks for nailing the pro-life versus pro-choice labels. I've been using anti-choice and pro-choice for quite awhile when referring to the abortion debate; unfortunately it doesn't seem to be catching on.

Steve Buchheit said...

No worries, Jeri, the Pro-Lifers really get under my skin and itch like poison ivy does.

WHat I would really like to hear during one of these "debate of the issues" on tv or radio is for the pro-choice person make a comment about how they're not sure they can have an intelligent debate because the "opposing" side person really isn't about "no abortions", so they're here promoting a radical agenda under false pretenses. And then roll out all the planks of the pro-life position (no birth control - not even condoms, and no sex education - there are others but those are the two big ones that sit in my mind).