Sep 15 2012

Book Review: The Elvenbane by Andre Norton & Mercedes Lackey

Posted by Mathias

Dragons have been spreading rumors of The Elvenbane to sew seeds of trouble among the elves who are cruel to their human slaves.  Neither dragons nor elves are native to this world, but while the elves have conquered the native humans, the Dragons have opted to hide in seclusion.  The Elvenbane follows the story Shana, a half-blood outcast raised by the Dragons and the subsequent rise of the half-blood wizards years after the last rebellion had been put down by the Elven Lords.

The story is told from the various points of views of people within the world (third person) but focuses mostly on Shana, Alara (a dragon shaman and Shana’s foster mother), and her son Kemanorel.  The story actually starts with the point of view of Shana’s mother, Serina Daeth who is a concubine of one of the elven lords.  Serina  became pregnant with a forbidden half-blood child and is fleeing for her life at the start of the story. (more…)

Sep 14 2012

HarperCollins Imprint, Harper Voyager Opens Up For Submissions – My Thoughts

Posted by Mathias

It was kind of exciting when I heard that Harper Voyager was opening itself up for direct submissions for its e-book publishing department.  Harper Voyager, the Sci-Fi & Fantasy imprint of HarperCollins, is looking for, according to its site, submissions to fill an apparently gaping void in publication schedules of ebooks.

“Currently, we are looking to acquire enough content to release a new Harper Voyager digital title each month,” the company announced.  How many months however is a mystery.  It could be a year, two years, or a couple of months.  No one knows how many books they are looking to acquire.  Even so, expect Harper Voyager to get flooded by authors with big dreams when they open up the submission process on October 1st.  The submission period ends October 14th.

However, my initial excitement has been kind of tempered since reading this.  What follows are my thoughts as I have worked through whether or not Under the Darkened Moon, if polished in time, might in fact get submitted. (more…)

Sep 11 2012

Even “traditionally” published books have errors

Posted by Mathias

People like to knock self-published authors, those brave souls that have decided to try something other than traditional publishing, with broad strokes that lump every self-published author into the category of garbage.  Yes, most of what is self-published is horrid trash.  Bad plots.  Poorly contrived characters.  Not to mention continuity errors, misspellings, and awkward sentences galore!  Sometimes self-published books overcome these problems, Fifity Shades of Grey for one (though don’t ask me how or why), but it is not common.  The crap that is self-published gives everything else a bad name.

But the sad truth is that, for all the bashing of self-published authors who rush their works onto Amazon.com without proper editing and proof reading, traditionally published books are rife with errors as well.  Yes, they are often farer and fewer between, but they are still quite common.  Most traditionally books I read have errors that I spot easily.  So no way a “professional” editor couldn’t.  Usually it’s just punctuation or a cumbersome sentence that takes three or four passes to understand.  These errors stare me in the face all the time, and I wonder how on God’s green Earth they made it past the supposed filters. (more…)

Sep 10 2012

Under the Darkened Moon Editing Update

Posted by Mathias

So, yes, editing for Under the Darkened Moon is coming along well.  Just yesterday I got through Chapter 19 on the FINAL round of edits.  We’re up to Chapter 23 on the live read through.

In terms of general things, words are hitting the cutting room floor fast and furious.  Here’s the way things look through the first 19 chapters: (more…)

Sep 09 2012

Sometimes The Movie Is Better Than The Book – Sometimes Not

Posted by Mathias

There are some people who insist that the book is always better than the movie.  I don’t agree.  There are so many factors that go into what makes a good movie and what makes a good book.  I’ve seen my share of movies that actually trump the book they were based on.  As much as Tolkien fanboys disagree, Peter Jackson’s interpretation of Tolkien’s Lord of the Ring trilogy was far superior to the books in my opinion.  Tolkien’s prose is, well, cumbersome, clumsy, and a little bulky.  I still liked the books, although only The Two Towers ranks in my top 20 fiction/fantasy/science fiction books of all time.  I know, sacriledge!  Don’t care. (more…)

Sep 08 2012

Things I Simply Don’t Believe

Posted by Mathias

There are just some things I simply don’t believe.  For example, someone with 100,000 followers, but who only follows 1,000 people him/her self, on Twitter chooses to follow me.  Ok, I really would like to think I am that interesting.  Really, I would.  Maybe I am.  But I’ve been to this rodeo enough to know how it is going to play out. (more…)

Sep 07 2012

Word of the day – gault

Posted by Mathias

gault
Pronunciation: \ˈgȯlt\
Function: noun
Etymology: perhaps of Scandinavian origin; (more…)

Sep 05 2012

Today’s Word Of The Day – Obdurate

Posted by Mathias

ob·du·rate
adj
\ˈäb-də-rət, -dyə-; äb-ˈdu̇r-ət, əb-, -ˈdyu̇r-\

Definition of OBDURATE (more…)

Sep 04 2012

How much should you REALLY be paying an editor?

Posted by Mathias

This was an interesting conversation that came up the other day between myself and some of my writer friends. How much should you reasonably expect to pay an editor?

One friend told me he was seeing rates of about $0.04 per word for a full blown edit. That’s for the works. His 365 page manuscript (250 words per page) would garner a fee of $3,650! WOW! (more…)

Sep 03 2012

Winners Might Never Quit But …

Posted by Mathias

We all love to turn to inspirational advice when we feel like we just cannot go on down our chosen path.  One of the most common such pieces of advice is that quitters never win, and winners never quit.  It sounds real great!  It pumps you up!  It gives you the motivation to plow ahead!

The truth is that inspirational phrases like this are half truths.  Yes, quitters  never win because they give up before they do so.  And yes, winners never have quit because they have won.  But there is an important caveat to this old saying that is missing.  That caveat is that by not quitting doesn’t mean you will win. (more…)