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Martha Wells

My Flying Lizard Circus

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Somewhat the Year in Review

As of yesterday I'm about 105,000 words into the third Books of the Raksura, the one set after The Serpent Sea, probably with about 15,000 words to go. It's been going very slowly, but I really want to finish it by Christmas. Then I'd be on track for finishing a book a year since 2007. Not all of those books have sold to publishers, but still, they're finished. :)

Coming up on the end of this year, I'm in a much better place in my career/life than I've been since about 2004. I had a book come out, I had the audio version of that book come out (something that never happened before), and I have another book coming out in a month or so. There's no way to tell at this point whether it will continue, but I sure hope so. :fingers crossed: :knock on wood:


A few links:

Fanfiction: Brief article in the Guardian about something I feel very strongly about, since I was in the original Star Wars generation and first wrote fanfic back before the internet and we had to walk both ways uphill through the snow and fight woolly mammoths: Fanfiction can be an eloquent tribute – it deserves more respect
I've said it before on here, but again: if you want to write fanfic about any of my books, go for it, have fun. I can't say I'll read it, but I consider it an incredible compliment.

From Writer Beware: Lies, Damned Lies, and Statistics: How Relying on Numbers Can Get You Into Trouble
I've seen these sorts of statistics (most of which appear to be plucked from thin air, and few of which are ever linked to actual sources of information) used again and again to justify bad decisions--from settling for fee-charging agents, to paying huge amounts of money to deceptive "publishers," to defaulting directly to self-publishing (there are good reasons to self-publish, but believing that it's impossible for a new writer to find an agent or a commercial publishing deal isn't one of them). It's unfortunately very easy for writers to buy into these faux numbers--whether out of fear, or inexperience, or simply because they vindicate writers' own frustration with rejection. But if you look at the numbers closely, they don't hold up.

Magick For Terri: The magick4terri fundraiser auction for writer/editor/artist Terri Windling is still going on, and there are some seriously incredible items up for sale, including jewelry, art, fanfic, original stories, signed books, knitted goods, delicious food items, and much more.

Terri and her family have been dealing with health issues that have drained financial resources, so if you can't bid, consider putting up an item for sale, or linking to the auction. But if you have money to spend this is also a great spot to find one of a kind holiday presents. (Those original drawings by Alan Lee could be once in a lifetime holiday presents.)

I entered signed copies of The Cloud Roads and The Serpent Sea The current bid is $150.00, which I am pretty thrilled with, because I would never have been able to donate that much on my own.

More places to do good things:

* Bastrop Public Library still needs Children's and YA book donations to replace books destroyed by wildfires. The Austin SCBWI is taking mailed books and donations up to December 8.

* There are a few days left in the GuysLitWire Book Fair for Ballou Senior High School. These books will go to the school library and there is still some SF/F and graphic novels on the school's wish list.

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Thanks very much. :) I'm really hoping that with ebooks keeping people's backlists available longer, career crashes will be less common, or at least less hard to climb out of.

The fanart and jewelry and things are especially awesome, because the writer can enjoy them too. I was never so jealous of Naomi Novik as the time someone made her a Temeraire action figure. :)

Here's hoping all continues to go well with your career!

I remember being really shocked when I first started reading your blog and realized you'd had trouble getting anything published for a while after the Île-Rien books - I had loved those so much that I couldn't see how the rest of the world could fail to appreciate them, and had been anxiously waiting to see something new from you.

I have to say that The Cloud Roads wasn't quite as much to my tastes as the Île-Rien books were (though I did still enjoy it), but given that my tastes are obviously not everyone's, hopefully this means that this series will have broader appeal and publishers will have the common sense to stay interested in your work!

Thanks very much! (The later Ile-Rien books weren't distributed very well, so I'm not sure how much of the world got to even see them. :) )

I'm so very pleased you have more books coming out. And it was one of the high points of my year to meet you at Worldcon, and have a face and a personality to put behind the name on the page.

(I still owe you a dinner sometime for the suggestion of Gaido's when my wife and I were in Galveston. Perhaps next Worldcon.)

But most of all, there are the books, and more of them to come.

Thanks very much! It was good to meet you, too. I had a very good time at that Coffee Klatch. (And if you go to Galveston again, try Rudi and Paco on Post Office street next to the Opera House -- it's fabulous.)

Im hoping things continue to go well for you, I loved The Cloud Roads and I want to read as many books in the Raksura series as you can put out. I have a big backlog of 'to read' books on my shelf that I hope to catch up on during December, but come January Sea is going to the top of my list.

Nice article on fanfic also, I never really understood the anti-fanfic authors stance. If people were writing this for profit yes, but since it is basically just a hobby and posted for other peoples enjoyment I find it doesnt make sense.

As for George R. R. Martins comment quoted in the article, I dont see how it is poor writer training. Naomi Novik is another author I enjoy, and she started out with fanfic.

Thanks very much!

Yeah, I don't understand Martin's comment either. Any kind of fiction writing is good writer training. And it's fun, which is an end in itself.

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