Writer Links – Vampires, Pirates, and Novel Titles

This week I have begun a variety of summer renewal projects.  I have potted 10 new plants in my new place, and have begun a photo catalog of my bookshelves.  (I may post these to the blog, if encouraged.)

I have also begun a targeted revision of The Ligan of the Disomus, and a related short story, The Woman Who Wouldn’t Die.  Although I do not subscribe to the common wisdom that a work of art is “never finished, merely abandoned,” I am glad that Ligan had not been picked up for publication before I had a chance to sketch out and complete a few short stories in the Observer’s world, and thus work out some larger-scale plot and character development decisions.

But, enough about my writerly life!  On to the links from other writers:

Becky Levine reminds us not to let our critique relationships lag over the lazy days of summer!

Bethany Wiggins at the Shooting Stars blog posts some of the best title-idea advice ever, in aggregate from her commenters.  As a guy who challenged himself to write a story from two randomly chosen archaic words, I have to say that Bethany’s commenters have far better ideas than I did!

Les Edgerton explains how the writer can (and why he/she should) put the reader into a dream-like state.

John Fox at BookFox points us to a very interesting development at the University of Washington’s Seattle Review: “Starting with our forthcoming Fall 2010 issue, The Seattle Review will publish, and will only publish, long poems and novellas.”  For those of us who have trouble with the extremes of short stories and novels, this is intriguing indeed!

Brittany Landgrebe points out that it’s not always awesome to be a pirate.  No, seriously.  Sometimes: totally not awesome.

Dawn Simon at Plotting & Scheming offers some thoughts on critique groups.

Juliette Wade at the Talk to YoUniverse blog discusses reassessing your trajectory as a writer, and reminds writers not to try to be someone else.

Finally: You guys know how I feel about vampire stories.  Or, at least, you know I am no fan of Twilight., and I hold Anne Rice in high suspicion for making devils sympathetic.  But here are two developments to add nuance to my general disdain for the over-abused genre:

  1. My good friend Scott Meek has a novel coming out in July called Dying Light, which adds an intriguing new twist to the vampire trope.  Look for it in bookstores, and ASK FOR IT if they don’t have it.
  2. My current short story work-in-progress, The Woman Who Wouldn’t Die, reveals a part of the Observer‘s world that has been lurking under the surface for some time.  (And, to those who have asked whether Ligan‘s Reider was a vampire, the answer is still No.)  My own approach to the vampire legend takes a very theological and metaphysical turn.  Stay tuned.

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