Just as an FYI for all y’all, I’ve made a change to the title of the writing book. It is now:
You’re Not Fooling Anyone When You Take Your Laptop to a Coffee Shop: Scalzi on Writing
Yes, it’s long. So what. I like it. Although I do like the runner-up, too: “Sailing the Ramen Seas: Notes on the Writing Life.” If Bill thinks the first title is too much, I’ll fall back on the ramen. Which really is a writer thing to do, is it not.
You may like the chapter titles as well:
1. Writing Advice, or, Avoiding Real Work the John Scalzi Way
2. Yo Ho, Yo Ho, A Writer’s Life For Me
3. The Schadenfreude Needle is Buried Deep Into the Red: On Writers
4. Science Fiction, or, Don’t Skip This Chapter, You Goddamned Writing Snobs
Only four chapters. Each between 10k and 20k words, however. Total book length is 70k words.
Also, the book is compiled, sequenced and sent. January 24, and I already have a book done for the year. Only three more to go! Please kill me.
Just a reminder that tomorrow I and Ron Hogan descend on Philadelphia like a biblical plague of smart-ass movie book writers, for an event at the aptly-named Germ Books + Gallery (308 E. Girard, 215-423-5002) at 7pm in the evening. We’ll be talking specifically about science fiction films of the 70s (seeing as I’ve written a book on SF films, and he’s written a book on 70s films), but I imagine that the discussion is likely to wander afield as he and I shock and amaze the good people of Philly with our sass and wit (not to mention humility). This is going to be a lot of fun, so if you’re in the area, try to be there.
I’ll tell you one of the reasons that I’m looking forward to the event, which is that while Ron and I have known each other for well over a decade now, we’ve never actually physically met. We “hung out” on the alt.society.gen-x newsgroup back in the day (“the day” in this case being around 1994) and while we’ve kept up with other since then and cheered each other on with our respective careers, we’ve never managed to actually be in the same state at the same time as far as I know. This is soon to be corrected, and indeed I have some reason to expect that other former members of the a.s.g-x tribe will be at the reading as well. We’ll all be together again for the very first time. That’s the online world for you.
Let me also take a moment here to sing the praises of Ron’s book; his publicist sent along a copy and I would heartily agree with the Publishers Weekly review that calls it one of the year’s most fun film books — I had a lot of fun cruising through it (and dwelling particularly, as is to be expected, on the chapter on SF movies). It’s smart and a blast to go through, which is a more difficult combination that I think many people would expect. But, yes, if you’re a fan of 70s cinema (or know someone who is), this should be a no-brainer for the pick up.
Along with Philly, I’ll also be spending some time in the NYC area over the weekend; I’ll be doing the “visit Tor” thing on Friday and will otherwise be spending time with some college pals but I might have time to see folks. So if you know of anything particularly groovy going on this weekend in the NYC environs, by all means let me know. I’ll have e-mail access and all that groovy stuff.
All this moving about the country means that updating here may be light over the next few days. Just a fair warning. Also, a quick note for all the folks who have sent me link ideas recently — I’ve got them but haven’t had time to follow up on them because I’ve been trying to jam a week’s worth of work into three days (a week’s worth of work that’s included putting the finishing touches on the writing book). I’ll try to track through your links soon.