We’re down to the last couple of days of summer here at the Scalzi compound — school starts on Monday — and this turns out to be a good thing, because both Athena and I have reached that point where we are both unspeakably bored yet any proposed solution to said boredome strikes us as even more boring, if such a thing is even possible (and it is).
For Athena, this will be all solved after the weekend, when the boredom of the dregs of summer will be replaced first by the excitement of a new school year, and then by the boredom of new school work. But hey, it’s something. I on the other hand will have to whomp something up myself. Stupid directionless life path I’ve chosen! That’s what I get, isn’t it.
So, are we alone in our end-of-summer ennui? Or has it got you, too?
Justine Larbalestier takes some questions from an audience at a writers’ festival, quickly realizes that the questions are focused on getting the attention of publishers before a manuscript is even completed, and has an epiphany on how to address those questions. You should link through to see her solution.
I’m largely in agreement with her. I think it’s important new writers understand the state of publishing and get smart ideas on how to draw attention to their work — but I think before you worry about any of that, you need to finish your work, and get your work to the point where it is genuinely publishable. Otherwise, all the concern about how to market yourself is just the writer nerd equivalent of trying to decide which shoe endorsement deal you’ll have when you make the (W)NBA, based on the fact you once put a ball through a hoop on a playground. Getting ahead of one’s self may be fun, but it’s not really all that useful. And anyway, there’ll be plenty of time to worry about all that stuff, after you have a completed manuscript.
Having caused half the science fiction geeks in the known universe to demand my worthless corpse be frozen in carbonite for pointing out the bad design in Star Wars in my AMC column last week, I now risk inflaming the other half by doing the same to the Star Trek universe. Because, damn it, why should Star Trek get off easy. As ever, feel free to leave comments/petulant bleatings/death threats over there.
Don’t worry, next week’s AMC column will be about something else entirely. Assuming I am still alive, that is.