Reading · Writing

Saturday Summation – 02 August 2014

Bits and pieces of things that caught my eye not only for my own interest, but enough to want to share with you, too…


Reading Stuff:

With The Giver movie coming out one of these days, I was interested in this article in the NY Times Books section about Lois Lowry and her thoughts about the film adaptation and the book itself. It ended up being more of a standard author interview, so I searched for other recent articles that would give me some idea of how Lowry might be feeling about the whole deal. Somewhere I had read that she never wanted to sell movie rights to any of her books, but then I discovered that she had sold the rights to The Giver 18 years ago. I enjoyed this article from instead, which gives a lot more perspective on the movie adaptation. If you are “worried” about the movie, I think you will like what Lowry has to say.


Publishing Stuff:

There is a whole lot of continued hubbub going about with the Amazon/Hatchette disagreement and with Amazon in general. I’m certainly not going to add to that, but instead, I read this interesting spin-off from some of that discussion/debate/(argument?) regarding the relationship between self-published authors and agents. Seth Fishman gives a nicely written post about what agents are looking for – which is a good story they can sell, from wherever it comes from. Lots of balanced insight.


Writing Stuff:

Getting the details right is a big deal in our writing. I’ve written about this kind of thing here and here in the past and talk about balancing real vs. authentic and when wrong details can pull a reader out of a story. Like anything, there is a huge range of feelings on this topic, but the great thing is that we have this HUGE fact and detail-checker at our fingertips. And because of that, we can find goodies like this post about the truth in writing scenes that occur in a forest. I know you have all read stuff that makes every one of these mistakes and often have not cared, but really, why not try to get it right sometimes, you know?


Song of the Week:

I added this song to my current WIP playlist and in some way, the refrain overlaps with my feelings about a recent incident in our neighborhood where a police officer was shot and killed – just a couple of blocks away from our house. Even if the connection is loose, I’m still throwing this song on this post this week because it has just really resonated with me: “My, My, My” – Rob Thomas

5 thoughts on “Saturday Summation – 02 August 2014

  1. Interesting stuff as always. I particularly enjoyed the article about self-published versus traditional authors. You know what I’d like to see someone blog about? The readers of self-published novels. Who are they? Why do they choose to read those novels? What do they think of them? How do they begin to select the books they want to read? My questions are genuine and not in a snobby “Why on earth would they read THAT?” kind of way. I read a lot. My book choices are typically a result of recommendations (from friends, from NPR, etc.) or of putting everything on the “Year’s Best” lists on my library queue. I wouldn’t even know how to begin weeding through the self-published stuff, and I’m interested in those who do.


    1. Ah – I think many choose self-published works by word-of-mouth, and Amazon also has best-seller lists. Still others simply download anything that’s free and then hope from there to find an author that “sticks”.

      I think, though, that this is a question I’ll have to find a way to ask through Twitter and beyond to get a better feel of those who are more discriminating in their selections. If you find that post, though, be sure to share! 😀


  2. I enjoyed the Fishman article as well.I think the SP’s I have were free or because I ‘know’ the author in some fashion. I don’t know that I’ve read that much of any, though. I still prefer to read traditional books as I read so many other ‘things’ online that I want a book to take me away from electronics!


    1. The print version of books is an interesting point to bring up. We can go into a bookstore or library and really see the books. Amazon, for example, has their own sort of thing with their “people who viewed this/bought this also viewed/bought this”, so maybe those who read more self-pubbed books have gotten used to that method?

      I have bought a few self-pubbed books, but have not had much success with them and I’d say the largest obstacle for me is that even at $.99 or $1.99 or whatever, this can quickly become a spendy risk. I can sit in a library or bookstore for a long time and really peruse a book before deciding to make an investment of purchasing a book.


      1. I think the ability to really look at the book before you buy it is a key point to book stores and libraries. (BTW, be sure to see my 20 cool bookstores post on FB.)

        I actually stopped going to my book group because I wanted to read books I chose, not ones others picked out for me to read. I recall buying at least two books that I really didn’t like and then I was frustrated that I’d spent what little funds I had on books I would only give away. When I do go to book group, I try to find the book through our statewide library system rather than buy it … less painful that way!

        Bonus points for having used peruse properly 🙂


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