Tag Archive 'Writing on the Ether'

If the ‘Elastic Mind’ Snaps: A Lenten Lullaby

    This will be my last post until Monday, April 13,2015. No, not me.  (You wish.) No, that’s a colleague, the memoirist Kathy Pooler. She’s a good, cold-weather Catholic, mind you, so Lent means a lot more to her than it does to troppo Protestants like me. Following a retreat with some author-colleagues, Pooler has […]

So Shall You Reap? Success and ‘Investment’ at #DBW15

Shot Out of a Cannon I’m told that there are people who find the holidays restful. I have yet to meet one of these extraordinary creatures, but I think they would find holding the publishing industry’s first grand-slam conference of the year in the second week of January to be a dandy thing. Bright-tailed and […]

When ‘There Are No Words,’ I Can’t Even

‘What This Loss of a Language Means’ “I can’t even.” You know the phrase, right? Another day, another pop-media whine. “I can’t even” is credited to the bloggrs of Tumblr, who apparently can’t even find it in their hearts to give us an “e” before an “r.” Call me Portr. I am so hip that […]

The Gate We Should Have Kept: And Was Mystique That Bad?

  One of the most perceptive regulars in #FutureChat, The FutureBook digital publishing community’s weekly live discussion, is Carla Douglas of BeyondPaperEditing.com in Kingston, Ontario. And in a recent doing of the discussion, Douglas pointed out that writing, while once among the most isolated and solitary of careers has been made one of the most social by […]

“Visionaries on the Decks”: Storytelling

  “To Declare Your Story’s Intent” There are things important to you. You hurt. You know stuff. I don’t. You see things that I cannot…You have everything you need, including the courage to declare your story’s intent. — Donald Maass, Writing 21st Century Fiction Not for nothing am I looking forward to the November 3-7 […]

You Are So On (Because They Are, Too)

My address is 2025 Avenue of the Stars.  This is as it should be, of course. 90067. With my sunglasses so firmly in place that I can barely read anything on the screen, I’m writing to you on the eve of Phil Sexton’s Writer’s Digest Novel Writing Conference in Los Angeles. It’s at the Hyatt […]

Free the Writers! (From Each Other)

  We’ve had a lot of laughs at publishers’ expense lately, about how many “actual readers” they may have met, right? What if our writers know even fewer “actual readers” than our publishers?    You’ve been around too much lately, Helen, you ought to stay at home more. That sentence, husband-to-wife, from Noel Coward’s Design for […]

Sir Hugh and the Snail

When Mollusks Attack We don’t know why images of armed knights fighting snails are common in 13th and 14th century illuminated manuscripts.  Through a tweet from one of my favorite authors, William Gibson, I found my way to a post by Sarah J. Biggs at the British Library. “One of our post-medieval colleagues noticed a painting of […]

When They Talk About You at #DBW14: You’re Branded

  NEW YORK—The Digital Book World Conference & Expo (DBW) isn’t designed for authors. And that’s fine. Various sectors of the industry! the industry! have every right to get together by and among themselves to consider things from their own viewpoints and on behalf of their own interests. As good as our authors are at contorting […]

Scale: That All the Books Should Be Counted

  Caesar Augustus: All Is Forgiven And it came to pass in those days, that there went out a decree from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be taxed. Luke 2:1, King James Version, New Testament That glow on the faces of so many of us Protestant ministers’ children this time of year is […]

Leveling Up: In Praise of Writer Dads

  According to my kids I’m “funny a lot” and make them laugh. I’m a goofball. My wife says I’m excited because I have my perfect audience right now. I’m yucking it up for all I can get, because I know that shit’ll evaporate come twelve or thirteen. Hopefully by then they’ll like video games, […]

“The Inflexible Routines”

  I was withdrawing deeper into myself, isolating myself from my surroundings, settling into the routines—the inflexible routines—I have before each match and that continue right up to the start of play. This is from Rafael Nadal’s sometimes surprisingly candid book, Rafa, written with John Carlin. Listen for that light, self-effacing Majorcan accent, our Mediterranean catch of the day, […]