Friday, July 22, 2011

Conan the Barbarian trailer

I'll be the first to admit, I am skeptical of the new Conan the Barbarian movie. So far, none of the trailers have impressed upon me this upcoming film will have anything more than lots of special effects and fight scenes.

Until I saw the trailer I present to you below. Now I have a glimmer of hope. Maybe.

100 sites for fiction writers: #35 - AgentQuery

This is an ongoing series looking at websites that can be of help to fiction writers with their craft and career.


For decades book writers have been seeking the services of literary agents to help get their manuscripts before editors and publishers, and potentially to sell the rights to the books. Literary agents are supposed to be part of the "in" crowd, knowing what particular editors are looking for, knowing the publishing business, etc.

Digital publishing has come along and is starting to change how many literary agents work, and some writers' opinions of using agents in the first place, but one thing is still true: Plenty of writers out there continue to want to work with an agent.

To that end, the site AgentQuery exists.

Imagine a search engine that focuses specifically on finding a literary agent, and you'll have a pretty good idea of what AgentQuery actual is. You can go to the site and use the Searchable Database to find an agent, and each agent and/or agency listed has a complete profile, which can help you decide which agents draw your interest.

But this website offers more.

If you are a beginning writer and not sure just how literary agents can work for you, check out the site's About Literary Agents link. If you need to learn the basics of writing a query letter, go to How to Write a Query Letter.

There are also plenty of other resources, such as Websites for Writers, information about Grants and Foundations, and the basics on How to Publish an E-book. All that is just the tip of the iceberg, because there is much more information for writers at AgentQuery.

On a related note, in some of today's writing circles, agents are somewhat frowned upon. But that doesn't mean the right agent for you can't give your writing career a boost and help keep you focused. Just be wary when you are considering an agent, and make sure to ask questions of any agent or agency interested in your work.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

100 sites for fiction writers: #34 - Preditors & Editors

This is an ongoing series looking at websites that can be of help to fiction writers with their craft and career.

Preditors & Editors

The website Preditors & Editors states its purpose "is to provide writers with information and contacts for the purpose of seeking publication of their work."

But the site is so much more than that.

First, for beginning writers, the Preditors & Editors site is a must. If you want to know how a Literary Agent works, then go to Preditors & Editors. If you are trying to find out about writing and publishing Awards, this site is for you. Looking for Chat Sites to contact other writers? Preditors & Editors is for you. Truly, there is so much information available at this website that you'll just have to spend some hours and days looking it over.

Also, if you are job hunting and prefer something in the writing field, don't forget to check out the Jobs page.

In a way, because of its Magazine listings and Book Publisher listings and plenty of other listings, this site is somewhat akin to other writers' market sites like Duotrope's Digest and But in my opinion the Preditors & Editors site is more complex and offers much more information.

Sure, there are lists of markets to be found on this site, but Preditors & Editors goes one major step further than most other sites.

It makes recommendations. And it offers warnings.

If an agent or publisher or any other individual or company has a history of potentially questionable actions in dealings with writers, you can bet to find something about this at Preditors & Editors.

On the other hand, Preditors & Editors does not hesitate to point out companies and people who have shown themselves in good standing with writers.

Still, all of this does sometimes bring up some drama and potentially even legal concerns with the Preditors & Editors site. The website has been run by Dave Kuzminski since 1997 and he and the site have faced more than their fair share of controversies. But that's to be expected from a site that has become known somewhat as a whistle-blower within the publishing industry. If you'd like to know more about this, check out the Warnings page.

Before closing, I'd like to bring up another point. Though the focus of this series is upon fiction writers, and though the Preditors & Editors site tends to be lumped in as a writers' site, Preditors & Editors also offers Music listings, Journalism listings, information about Game PublishersConvention and Festival listings, and so much more that I would have to write a book to mention it all.

All I'm saying is ... if you're a writer, this site is definitely worth your while. There is so much knowledge here, it could take years to study it all.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

100 sites for fiction writers: #33 - XinXii

This is an ongoing series looking at websites that can be of help to fiction writers with their craft and career.


More and more writers are turning to self publishing in e-book formats. So far the majority of digital publishing is focusing upon the U.S. and to some extent in the U.K.

Why is this so?

One could argue several reasons. The larger audiences are to be found in those countries, as are the companies making available the technology to self publish e-books. Other reasons abound.

But all that is changing. E-books are becoming more popular in other parts of the world, and it is an unwise writer who does not pay attention to these markets.

To help writers reach other parts of the globe, XinXii offers an online spot to sell e-books and other documents in various formats. As of right now the site is available for use in seven languages: English, French, German, Italian, Dutch, Spanish and Portuguese. For sales, the site allows writers to make use of three different currencies: U.S. dollar, Euro, and British pounds.

Somewhat like Amazon's KDP program, a writer can go to the XinXii site, create a membership, then upload their e-books to sell. Writers get paid either 40 or 70 percent of sales, depending upon pricing, which the author gets to set. Payments are made through Paypal once a minimum threshold is reached ($27 U.S. dollars), but remember that you have to request a payment.

Currently XinXii accepts documents in 15 different formats, enough to ensure that almost every writer will be able to work within the site.

Started in Germany initially, the site now proclaims itself "the leading digital self-publishing platform in Europe." I don't know if that's true or not, but it sounds good. Amazon might argue with them about this, however, but XinXii is actually based out of Europe, so there's that.

An added bonus with XinXii is the site also allows writers to sell their own audio books.

It's nice to see more potential for e-book authors, especially outside of the U.S. Hopefully this is a market that will continue to grow.

Harlan Ellison quote

"You are not entitled to your opinion. You are entitled to your informed opinion. No one is entitled to be ignorant."

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Re-publishing science fiction short story for e-books

The Impulse to Punish (a short story of Mars)For some time my science fiction short story, "The Impulse to Punish," has been available over at Abandoned Towers Magazine. You can read the story there for free, and it might be something you'll like if you enjoy lighter sci-fi along the lines of Bradbury and Heinlein.

Unfortunately, the magazine will be shutting down on August 1 unless someone takes it over.

I like "The Impulse to Punish." I think it's a story that deserves an audiences. So, to that end, and because rights have reverted to me, I have decided to make the story available as a short e-book. The cost is only 99 cents.

If you have a Kindle, the story is available online at Amazon.

If you have a Nook, the story is available online at Barnes & Noble.

For all others, the story is available online at Smashwords.

Good reading to you.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Six Questions Interview

Author, screenwriter, director and producer Andy Rane has started a new series at his blog in which he asks authors the same six questions. Guess who got to be the lucky writer to kick off this series?

That's right, me. I'm the first writer to be interviewed in Rane's "The Same Six Questions, so go check it out to see the questions and my answers.

Latest article at Rogue Blades Entertainment

"Don't Pigeonhole Fantasy Writers" is my latest article over at Rogue Blades Entertainment's Home of Heroics site, so check it out. I write an article for the site about every 6 weeks or so, and this time I take a brief look at heroic fantasy authors who have penned works in other genres.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

100 sites for fiction writers: #32 - Kindle Author

This is an ongoing series looking at websites that can be of help to fiction writers with their craft and career.

Kindle Author

Kindle AuthorWith more and more writers taking the plunge and publishing their own works digitally, how can readers and other writers keep up with all the new names and e-books hitting the market? Easy. You go to a site like Kindle Author.

Every day of the week there is a new posting about a Kindle e-book. Some of these posts are reviews while others are sponsorships, basically advertising, paid for by the author(s) of the e-book presented.

Thousands of people go to the Kindle Author site each month, making it an excellent place for writers to have their works spotlighted.

But advertising is only one reason writers should check out this site. What's another reason? Well, keeping up with what other writers are doing, of course.

There are also informational postings at this site, such as How to Create a Book Cover for Your Kindle E-book.

There are also interviews with Kindle authors, such as Amanda HockingM.R. Mathias, and Ty Johnston.
So who runs the Kindle Author site? A busy man, that's who. David Wisehart is not only a novelist himself, but he's also a screenwriter, director and film producer.

E-book novelists wanting to keep up with their peers should pay attention to this website, and it might not hurt to do a little advertising, too.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

100 sites for fiction writers: #31 - Writer's Digest

This is an ongoing series looking at websites that can be of help to fiction writers with their craft and career.

Writer's Digest

Writer's Digest (1-year)Since 1920 Writer's Digest magazine has been providing writers a periodical all their own, with strong leanings toward fiction writers. Within the pages of the magazine have been found tons of information for writers, including market listings, interviews, tips on the craft, etc.

But Writer's Digest doesn't just end with its magazine. For nearly a century, Writer's Digest Books have been published, the best-known of which is the annual Writer's Market, a major resource for writers in their search for places to sell their stories. Besides the Writer's Market, there are tons of other books potentially helpful to writers, including other market listing resources, books on the craft, books on the business end of writing, reference materials and more.

2011 Writer's MarketOne would think all of that would be enough to bring many writers to the Writer's Digest website, but really that's just the tip of the iceberg.

The site also offers Online Workshops and plenty of articles, including articles about Tips & Prompts, help toWrite Better, information about Conferences and Events, and tips on how you can Get Published.
Also, there are a number of publishing professionals who have Blogs on the site, and there is an active Forum.

A word of warning, however. While much of the website itself is free, the books and magazines promoted by Writer's Digest are not free, as can be expected. Just to make sure everyone is clear about this. Still, the company, the magazine, the books and the website all hold tons of information, especially information that can be helpful to the beginning writer. Just keep in mind there is no single nor simple path to success as a fiction writer. It takes work.

Friday, July 15, 2011

100 sites for fiction writers: #30 - Rogue Blades Entertainment

This is an ongoing series looking at websites that can be of help to fiction writers with their craft and career.

Rogue Blades Entertainment

Return of the Sword: An Anthology of Heroic AdventureEvery reader and writer has their favorite genre. Some like romance, others fantasy or horror or westerns or ... the list could go on for a while. You get the drift. And you probably have your own favorite literary genre or two.

But one thing nearly all genres have in common is a hero as a character. Sometimes that hero is more than a little dark around the edges, and sometimes the hero isn't even the main character in a story, but there's a hero somewhere. Even in tales told by the bad guy, that bad guy has to face off against someone.

Quite often heroes are thought of as big, burly fellows wielding an even bigger sword or packing a six-shooter on their hip, but heroes can come in all varieties, as modern fiction often shows us.

But how many book publishers out there have a real focus upon heroes? Not many. In fact, I can only thing of one.

Which publisher is that? Rogue Blades Entertainment (RBE).

This publishing company has been around for a few years now, and so far its focus has been on heroic fantasy fiction, but that's going to change over the coming years. Fantasy will still likely be at the forefront, but the head honcho at RBE, Jason M. Waltz, has shown interest in expanding into other genres. All with a focus remaining on the heroic, of course.

If you are a writer, you obviously want to check out RBE to see if it is someplace you can send your work.

So far this publisher is known for fantasy anthologies, such as Return of the Sword, but in the future novels and other longer works of fiction might be of interest to RBE and Waltz.

But besides RBE being a possible market for you, there is another reason to visit this site. I'm talking about theHome of Heroics portion of the RBE website. Somewhat like a rolling blog, the Home of Heroics offers articles every few days from different writers and editors and other people working in the publishing business. Some of these people are full-time professionals, others only part-time professionals, and a few are budding writers.

Within the Home of Heroics you can find all kinds of articles about write, fantasy, general fiction and more, but the kicker is that each article will have a focus upon heroes and the heroic. Some articles are even about real-life heroes, such as Thailand's Somdech Phra Jao Taksin Maharat.

A writer can learn a lot from these articles. Tips abound for writing about heroes, how to construct them as characters, how to place them in dire circumstances, how to come up with a different type of hero, etc. You can also learn quite a bit about the history of heroic fantasy and heroic fiction in general.

Even if you are in the mood for some reading that doesn't have to do with writing, there is plenty of historical interest to be found in RBE's Home of Heroics. Give it a try.

Monday, July 11, 2011

A quote for me

Because I want to remember this ...

"We are kept from our goal not by obstacles, but by a clear path to a lesser goal." - Robert Brault

Sunday, July 10, 2011

100 sites for fiction writers: #29 - Anthologies Online

This is an ongoing series looking at websites that can be of help to fiction writers with their craft and career.

Anthologies Online

Ever walk through a book store and pick up a collection of great short stories from a bunch of different writers? Then have you wondered how all those stories came together?

It's pretty simple, really. There's an editor in charge of the anthology, sometimes more than one editor, and he or she takes submissions from writers. Sometimes the editor will have certain writers with whom they want to work, and they will contact those writers first and ask if the writers would like to take part in the anthology by supplying a short story. Other times, an editor will be open to submissions from writers with which he or she has not worked. Often the editor makes the search for stories public, but sometimes not, depending upon contacts and word of mouth to let writers know about an upcoming anthology.

For writers, it is not always easy to find out about anthologies. Often a writer has to hope to hear about an anthology open to story submissions, or they can check out a handful of websites that keep track of anthologies.

One of the best of these sites is Anthologies Online.

To check out lists of anthologies that are seeking stories and poetry, go to the Writers Wanted section. Here you will find lists broken down by month. Click on the month and you'll be taken to a list of anthologies seeking stories that month.

You can also go to the Anthologies link to check out Featured Anthologies. And don't forget to find out about writing and poetry Contests.

There is even a Message Board where you can ask about anthologies and where sometimes editors go to look for writers.

Don't forget to look around the rest of the site, because you'll also find tips for beginning writers and poets, as well as a few interviews with writers.

The difference between fantasy and horror

The wife and I were discussing a story I've been working on, and she brought up a question about the ending. She felt a character should have been more forceful with particular actions, whereas I disagreed with her.

Well, it's my story, so we'll see how things turn out.

However, though my story takes place in a fantasy world, it is at heart a horror tale. My wife did not understand the difference, she not being a big fan of either genre in literature, so I had to explain it to her in terms I thought she would understand.

Basically, I told her the difference between fantasy and horror was that in fantasy a big monster would show up and everyone would gather their swords and charge out to kill the beastie, whereas in horror a big monster would show up and everyone would suddenly go, "Oh shit! We're screwed!" And more than likely they would be, or at least some of them would be.

Now I admit that is a generic, extremely oversimplified explanation of a comparison between fantasy and horror. Obviously both genres are far more expansive and potentially expressive than the limits I laid down.

But I still kind of liked it.

Books read in 2011: No. 37 - Toll the Hounds

Toll the Hounds: Book Eight of The Malazan Book of the Fallenby Steven Erikson

Started: July 10
Finished: August 23

Notes: Last year I read a lot of this series, including re-reading one book I had read before. But this year I put off the next novel because I wanted a breather from fantasy fiction for a while, and because this book is just so huge at 1,200 words. But I've been missing the Malazan world of late, and I've been trying to read some more fantasy. It's time.

Mini review: No modern author of whom I'm aware can create a climax that's so earth-shattering, so changing that it literally can re-create his worlds after having killed off major, likable characters, but still leave you feeling pretty good in the end. That being said, this is my favorite modern epic fantasy series, but I have had some problems with the last couple of books. They need editing. Badly. No, there are not a ton of mistakes, but a lot of chopping should have been done. Without thinking about it, any editor could have cut 200 pages from this book, and another 200 probably could have been cut with minimal effort. At 1,200 pages, there was just way too much philosophizing and speculation, a trait common to this series but one I did not find annoying until the last couple of books. Still, this was book 8 of 10, and I'll definitely be reading the last two.

Books read in 2011: No. 36 - Temple of Strays

Temple of Straysby R. Thomas Riley

Started: July 10
Finished: July 10

Notes: I first heard about this tale a couple of weeks ago over at the Apex Publications blog. The author had written an article about this story, about how he had never been able to make a sale with it because editors found it too disturbing (there's more to it than that, of course, but I'm simplifying). Well, that interested me. I've got one or two horror short stories that I've never been able to sell for the same reasons, stories which I've considered self publishing, but to be honest, I'm not sure I want my name attached to them. Ha! So, I was drawn to this tale. Let's see if it can shake me up a little.

Mini review: This is one of those stories that reinforces the idea that you should never, never, ever, never, ever go into the wilds anywhere anyhow ... without packing a firearm. Preferably, several firearms. At least one for each adult. If you cannot tolerate horror fiction in which there is no happy ending, in which violence occurs to children and animals, then you should stay far away from this tale. Me? I giggled.

Saturday, July 09, 2011

"Bayne's Climb" draws some attention

Bayne's Climb: Part I of The Sword of Bayne"Take a fascinating glimpse at the process of a pulp-style writer growing as an artist and learning to create something that is beautiful as well as exciting."

Those are some of the words of author Brent Nichols writing about my experimental fantasy novel, Bayne's Climb: Part I of The Sword of Bayne.

For Brent's full account of my novel, check out this link.

I'm glad he liked the book. And I'm glad he "got it."

Cinderella's BluesWhenever someone else can get a glimpse of what I am trying to accomplish with a particular piece of fiction, that to me is a highlight of being a writer, one of the best things about being a writer.

I also like it when readers take away things unintended by myself. I find it fascinating what those who perceive art can come away with.

For example, the song Blackbird by The Beatles, mainly a work of Sir Paul McCartney. To me, this is a song about death, but also a song that deals with setting someone free to go on to better things. But Paul has said more than once that Blackbird is about the civil rights movement of the U.S. in the 1960s. Go figure.

100 sites for fiction writers: #28 - Eugie Foster

This is an ongoing series looking at websites that can be of help to fiction writers with their craft and career.

Eugie Foster

Returning My Sister's Face: And Other Far Eastern Tales of Whimsy and MaliceEugie Foster must be one busy writer. Every time you turn around, it seems she has another short story appearing in some anthology or magazine or online site. She is also a voting member of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America (SFWA), has earned the 2009 Nebula Award for Best Novelette, and the 2009 Phobos Award. On top of all that and more, she works with the Georgia General Assembly to edit legislation.

On top of all that, Foster has taken the time to discover and keep track of a large and growing number of Markets where fiction writers can potentially sell their stories and/or novels. Here not only will you find a hefty list of book Publishers, but you can also find an extensive list of Children's Markets, meaning publications that are seeking literature for children.

If you feel you need to have your work critiqued by others who know what they are talking about, you should probably check out the list of Workshops that Foster has on her site. And if you are interested in learning about other writers, Foster's Links page has quite the list that will take you to other writers sites and blogs.

To be clear, this site is not necessarily one you will want to go to if you are looking for tips and such on writing. There is some of that here, but not all that much. Even Foster's Blog tends to be more personal or focus upon her writing career, but there is nothing wrong with that. The importance of this site for other fiction writers, despite interest one might find specifically in Eugie Foster, are those lists upon lists of markets I have mentioned, especially the markets for children's literature, as that can be difficult to find separate from the more traditional adult-fiction market lists.

Also, if you are interested in writing for the younger market, you should look into Foster's Columns, originally titled Writing for Young Readers. Though these columns are more than a few years old now, they still hold excellent information about writing fiction for young people.

On a side note, as Foster is mainly a writer of the speculative, you fans of science fiction and fantasy and horror will also likely want to check out this website.

Friday, July 08, 2011

100 sites for fiction writers: #27 - Apex Publications

This is an ongoing series looking at websites that can be of help to fiction writers with their craft and career.

Apex Publications

Apex Magazine - April 2011 (Issue 23)What exactly is Apex Publications? It is a small press publisher of speculative literature, meaning science fiction, horror and fantasy. Apex offers books in these genres, but online and often in print there has been an Apex Magazine, once called Apex Digest.

Big deal. So what? Why should a fiction writer care about this one little publisher?

Because this one little publisher has published the likes of Brian Keene, Ben Bova, Poppy Z Brite and Cherie Priest. If you are not familiar with those names, surely you have heard of Neil Gaiman?

For another thing, this little publisher isn't so little any more. Recently Publisher Jason Sizemore announced Apex Publications' books and magazines will be distributed in the U.S. and U.K. through Diamond Book Distributors. That's a pretty big deal. Not only does that show expansion, it also takes this company into a much wider market.

All of that's nice, but still, why should a fiction writer want to visit the site?

Well, obviously you could submit stories and novels to Apex Publications once you have read the Guidelines, but potentially more importantly you need to check out the site's Blog.

Yes, another blog. I can read your mind. Why in the world would you want to read yet another blog about writing? Truth be told, the Apex Publications blog isn't necessarily specifically for writing. The blog holds news about new editions of the magazine and books to be published through the company. But by reading the blog on a regular basis, you can also become a little more familiar with what the publisher and editors are looking for, which could potentially help your sales with the company.

And then, yes, there is plenty of information at the Apex Publications blog about writing. Guest posts are quite common, with regulars appearing every few days. Many of these blog posters are writers themselves, and some of them are editors or related to the publishing business in some other manner. Here you will find plenty of interviews with authors, as well as some news about the publishing industry and a good number of tips and ideas about writing.

Oh, and don't forget to read some of the great free fiction at the site. If you're a fan of the speculative, you are sure to find something there to like.

Thursday, July 07, 2011

Books read in 2011: No. 35 - The Black God's War: A Novella

The Black God's War: A Novella Introducing a new Epic Fantasyby Moses Siregar III

Started: July 7
Finished: July 10

Notes: This is a novella that previews the upcoming novel of the same name, which as of this writing is scheduled to be released in August of this year. This novella has garnered much praise, so I'm looking forward to it.

Mini review: This was a darn fine read. Not quite perfect, but shows much, much promise. This novella is 15 chapters of an upcoming, longer novel that as of this writing is scheduled to be released later this year. With more work being done on the story, and the expansion of the tale itself, I dare say this might in the end be one of the best epic fantasy novels I've yet to come across from an indie author (not that I've read all of them, of course). As a fellow writer, I'm not quite jealous, but I can look over the border into the lands of jealousy. This should be an awesome book when it comes out.

100 sites for fiction writers: #26 - CreateSpace

This is an ongoing series looking at websites that can be of help to fiction writers with their craft and career.


So you've been writing for a while, and maybe you think it's time you had a book published. You've considered going the traditional route by sending query letters to publishers and editors and literary agents, but for reasons of your own you have decided to publish your own books.

How do you go about this?

One of the most common ways today is to utilize a site such as CreateSpace, by Amazon. At CreateSpace, you can upload the file for your book, do some formatting and soon your book will be available for readers to purchase it online at How does the site work so fast, through print-on-demand technology.

Sounds simple. Truth to tell, there's more to it than that, but you can find out the specific details at the Book section of CreateSpace. Here you can find out about royalties and more technical issues such as tools for creating your book cover.

If you feel you need some help with your book, you can always find it at the Services section of the CreateSpace site. There you can find information and potentially help with editing, layout and even marketing of your book. These services are not free, however, and can cost as much as $299, but it might be worth it to you.

Keep in mind, the basics of CreateSpace will not cost you a dime. You can even get a free ISBN for your book, and that will be necessary for selling.

So how does CreateSpace make money from all us? Several ways. For instance, there are the services I mentioned above. Most noticeably, CreateSpace (Amazon) takes a little money from each of your books they have to print out. There are also a handful of other ways they make money, one being a special distribution program writers can pay to join, such a program promising better distribution for your books and a slightly larger percentage of money from the sales of your books.

There are those who prefer working with print-on-demand companies like Lightning Source, and I won't argue one way or the other, though I will say it is good to have options. When it comes to printing, you need to be aware of your options. Some sites might offer only certain types of paper for printing, or perhaps offer only certain types of books (hardback vs. trade paperback, etc.) So before you spend time and money on a site such as CreateSpace, or any other publishing site, make sure you learn what's what. You'll be better for it in the long run.

I'd also like to add, for you musicians and budding filmmakers out there, CreateSpace also offers CD and DVD services. So check out the site if you'd like to publish your own CD and/or DVD.

Tuesday, July 05, 2011

100 sites for fiction writers: #25 - National Novel Writing Month

This is an ongoing series looking at websites that can be of help to fiction writers with their craft and career.

National Novel Writing Month

November can be a crazy month for some fiction writers and those who want to be writers. Since 1999, thousands have taken part in National Novel Writing Month (also known as NaNoWriMo). The very first such month was in July, but it was moved to November starting in 2000.

Are you not familiar with National Novel Writing Month? Here are the basics: Writers from around the globe sign up at the website, then make a pledge to write 50,000 words of a novel in the month of November.
Quite simple, though writing 50,000 words in a month is a hefty task for most people. If you reach the 50,000 words in one month, then you submit your writing for verification. Once your work is verified to meet the length of 50,000 words, you are given an electronic award which you can put up on your blog or website. There is no single winner because everyone who reaches the goal is considered a winner.

But that doesn't mean you have to wait until October or November to visit the NaNoWriMo site. This website has plenty to offer throughout the rest of the year, especially for beginning writers.

If you'd like to pick up some tips and ideas about writing, you probably want to pay a visit to the Forums. There you can learn much, but you can also just hang out and have a good time.

If you feel you need a boost in your confidence, head over to the Pep Talks area to receive some advice from authors.

Are there children in your house who show an interest in fiction writing? You might want to check out the Young Writers Program at NaNoWriMo.

If you'd like an online retreat, a digital place to get away from world and just write, write, write, there is also a NaNoWriMo writing camp called Camp NaNoWriMo.

And once you have completed a novel, what do you do then? For suggestions check out the I Wrote A Novel, Now What? section.

Whether you are a budding novelist or an old pro, this site can help keep you motivated and help to keep you in your writing seat and those fingers typing. Don't wait until near the end of the year to visit the NaNoWriMo site. And there's plenty more at the site than what I've mentioned, so don't forget to check it out.

Monday, July 04, 2011

Books read in 2011: No. 34 - The Gateway (Harbinger of Doom Volume 1)

THE GATEWAY (Harbinger of Doom Volume 1)by Glenn G. Thater

Started: July 4
Finished: July 7

Notes: Fellow indie author Thater has been offering this e-book for free for some while now, I'm sure in a bid to draw in readers, and I've been thinking for some time I should give it a shot. Besides, I've been ignoring too much fantasy fiction this year in order to catch up on some other reading, and I think it's time I got back into some fantasy.

Mini review: I've read better, but I've also read worse. The beginning was jarring because there are so many characters thrown at the reader, but eventually you're able to make out who is who. The Theta character is by far the most interesting, with hints of a past that sound quite interesting, leaving me wanting to know more.