Another one bites the dust, I think

This morning I went to a favorite online lit magazine, Pindeldyboz, and discovered the magazine was shutting down. I think. The Web page is up, but the stories on it are from June.

I found an interview with the editors here that talks about why they’re shutting down. It’s a shame to hear another lit mag is folding. Though it’s understandable. Most are not paying gigs. They are side jobs, usually volunteer.

Anyhow, I’ll miss Pboz; it gave unknowns like me a chance to be read. And they published two of my stories. The only two pieces of fiction I’ve ever published.

And just for your amusement, my stories:

The Arc of the Cosmos


The Short, Unknowable Life of Frances Beachcomber


MIND MELD: ‘The Best Writing Advice I Ever Received…’ via SF Signal

I like this post from SF Signal.

And as a bonus, I’m going to answer the questions the post presents, though no one thought to ask me:

What was the best writing advice you received as a teenager/young adult, and who gave it to you?

I never received any writing advice as a teenager. But, I never asked anyone. I didn’t write much as a teenager, although the urge to do something creative with language nagged me: at times I wanted to write and draw comic books, or become a published role-playing game designer (my first writing submission was a rpg module sent to Dragon magazine), or write fantasy novels like Robert E. Howard or Michael Moorcock. Much of that activity was discouraged. I did, however, read. And as almost all the answers in this post note, every writer was a voracious reader. Reading begets writing.

The first real writing advice I ever received came from Rita Mae Brown’s Starting From Scratch. To Miss Brown, reading was paramount. So was writing in active voice. Her book also suggested journalism as an avocation to prepare for the vocation of being a literary artist. I went with that, and have found that journalism may just be a vocation and literary writing the avocation. Or maybe it’s all just a dream.

If you knew then what you know now about the writing life, would you have continued to pursue it?

I think I would have pursued writing in some way, although I certainly would have made some changes in my education and career pursuits. In particular, if I had a better vision of what I wanted to write or of my desire to write before I entered university, I probably would have gone to J-school. I also would have paid more attention to the emerging technology, and not been such a damn Luddite, perhaps learning photography, videography, and would have become much more familiar with the InterWebs in its infancy than I was.

How much of a disconnect is there between your vision of the writing life and the reality of it?

Up until about 10 years ago, my vision and reality were seriously disconnected. I had visions of myself whacking away at a manual typewriter while living on the Left Bank of Paris with tons of expats, like Hemingway. I drew my whole image of what a writer’s life was like from Hemingway. I wasn’t really paying attention to what was going on around me. I certainly had a hard time connecting that image to a career path as a writer. I wasn’t aware of the changes in publishing. Or how difficult it is to publish a book. Or how technology has changed writers. That and it’s clear writers aren’t pop stars. I’m not even sure writers register as even blips in the galaxy.

via MIND MELD: ‘The Best Writing Advice I Ever Received…’.

Best Blogging Practices, Part 4: The Blog Without a Name via Big Bad Book Blog

Here is the fourth of a series of posts from Big Bad Book Blog on blogging and promoting y0ur blog and your brand (aka, yourself) as a writer.  To me self promotion is a necessary evil, and yet even before the Interwebs existed, writers such as Dickens and Twain were out there promoting themselves, their works and their opinions.

As a writer, I have a hard time marketing myself. I’m innately shy. I also don’t have a book to promote — not at the moment. But, I do write freelance, and would like to make more money doing that. I’m also looking for full time employment, preferably as a writer or editor. So getting the word out is important.

But what is too much? What is too little?

via Best Blogging Practices, Part 4: The Blog Without a Name.

Best Blogging Practices, Part Three: Taming the Blog Monster via Big Bad Book Blog

The third post on blogging from Big Bad Book Blog. Providing content is the hardest thing to do, especially with other daily demands. I’m not sure how daily posts are possible, unless you’re re-posting content from other blogs, or you do write several posts at once, and have them timed to post each day. That practice, though, gets into the question of timeliness. It’s the problem every reporter or writer faces: what’s news one day is nothing the next, and with the Internet, news one second is nothing the next. How often do you blog? How much is too much or too little?

via Best Blogging Practices, Part Three: Taming the Blog Monster.

Ouch! Paris Review “Unaccepts” Work (via BREVITY’s Nonfiction Blog)

To paraphrase Buffalo Springfield: Something’s happening in the world of literary publishing. What it is ain’t exactly clear.

A comment on this post suggests something could be done: an anthology, an e-book, etc. And it does sound as if The Paris Review is rejecting previously accepted based on the aesthetics of the new editors.

Or maybe the Paris Review has just gone to hell in a hand basket after the death of George Plimpton.

Ouch!  Paris Review "Unaccepts" Work Brevity has been taking a few hits in the last week for our consideration of a reading fee, and Narrative has been taking some decent hits for having such a pricey reading fee, and Tin House took a few hits earlier in the month for suggesting we all buy books from indie bookstores (and send them the receipt), but I'm guessing the heat is about to turn elsewhere for a day or two. The Paris Review, in changing poetry editors, is now "un-accepting" … Read More

via BREVITY's Nonfiction Blog

Best Blogging Practices, Part Two: A Blog Without A Cause via Big Bad Book Blog

Here is the second part of a series on blogging from Big Bad Book Blog. Finding a focus for a blog is difficult. I started this blog, for instance, as an outlet for book reviews and other literary discussions. I never thought of it specifically as a platform to market myself. I put up another Web site for that purpose, although marketing myself as a writer is hard for me, almost as difficult as writing itself can be. Sometimes I think this blog is unfocused, although I try to stay within the realm of literature and writing in some way. What do you think? Is this blog focused?

Best Blogging Practices, Part Two: A Blog WIthout A Cause.