This article is from The Conversation; a news outlet funded by a number of universities, and it describes a psychological heuristic called the anchoring effect. I came across it as an undergraduate back in the last Ice Age and I’d forgotten about it but this reminder is timely. Exposure to a given top (or bottom) price makes us adjust our expectations as to what a fair price might be. In this example, seeing a ludicrously priced TV makes the next item on sale seem reasonable despite still being far greater than you might have considered acceptable without that first cognitive … Continue reading Selling your books – beware the anchoring effect
Indie Author interview Cathryn Grant: Demise of the Soccer Moms Website: Suburban Noir http://suburbannoir.com/ Q. Cathryn, you are the first person I have ‘known’ who has taken the publishing bull by the horns and gone Indie. Others have followed, and the quality says a lot about how difficult it is to crack the traditional route. What set you off in that direction? Had you tried other routes? How did you choose the publishing platform, and what did they offer that others didn’t? What surprised you most about the process? Cathryn: About ten years ago I started submitting short stories for … Continue reading Interview with Cathryn Grant; author of ‘Demise of the Soccer Moms’
This could just possibly be the daftest idea I ever had. I’ve opened a page where I will list indie publications as I hear of them. Mostly, I suspect, written by blog- and twitter-mates, but of course, the floodgates may be creaking on their hinges as I prepare this post. I don’t intend to review or even read everything that’s listed, although I’m starting off with Cathryn Grant’s Demise of the Soccer Moms which I have reviewed (just waiting for Cathryn’s say so about using the cover image). But I’ll be ensuring nothing offensive – to me, as this is … Continue reading Indie Authors’ page – new
I’ve seen this debate elsewhere, publish on your blog so you have a ‘presence’ or keep your work to yourself so that it remains saleable. So far, I’ve just put up early pieces; exercises, bits and bobs that might entertain but that wouldn’t make it into a slush pile, never mind a magazine. Last week though, on leave and with only myself to entertain, I wrote what I think is one of my best short stories EVER (nah – doesn’t take much!) and, it being under 500 words, I was about to sling it up here for my many thousands … Continue reading If not the blog then, where?
I like my sci-fi, really I do, and having been inducted at the age of eight into this genre, I am more than familiar with the essentials of pseudo-scientific terminology. Heck, I write it myself and I appreciate both the value and the pitfalls of inventing tech-speak to describe something that isn’t yet in existence. For me, the best tech-speak conveys a sense of familiarity so that, on reading it, I have a feeling I know what this is even though that has to be impossible. The worst offers a stream of multi-hyphenated guff and tells me this is ‘normal’, … Continue reading Hugo Nominee – are we suckered by techno-twaddle?
Just a little while ago, we were talking about the kinds of support we get from other writers and how we value the small communities that build up around blogs and tweets. Some of us are beginners with little to offer except awe for those who are into their third novel. Published or not, that’s tenacity, and if so far they haven’t hooked a publisher, this may say more about the vastness of the market than the quality of their work. If you can’t find ’em, you can’t impress ’em, and as the same principle applies in reverse, getting an … Continue reading Authors and writers in Second Life
Here’s a thought. Ever seen those sketch artists on the street or at local fayres who produce a portrait of you in a matter of minutes and you love it just because of the unique focused attention it offers? Well, how about an equivalent for writers/wannabe writers? Quite a few talk about doing their writing in cafes or bars (here, it would be the local pub – wey hey!) which presumably means either buying quantities of coffee or beer or trying to avoid attention while making just one last three hours. What about trading your services for a bit of … Continue reading Writing as cabaret
I have recently unfollowed someone for using the C word in a tweet. The offender gave a cursory apology but, in suggesting that those of us with ‘delicate sensibilities’ should ‘cover our ears’, rather belied himself. As a writer of court reports, some of them addressing abusive and criminal behaviours and requiring verbatim quotes, I am not unfamiliar with offensive language nor too fragile of constitution to repeat it when required. In fact, in therapy sessions, when clients have no other words for something and use, let’s call it a ‘street’ word so as not to attract unwelcome attention, I … Continue reading Language most foul
Appended to my last post (the text, not the bugle) was a suggested link titled ‘Aww man, we gotta blog?!‘ An unpromising catch at first glance but, being trapped in the middle of an edit for a clinical journal, I was tempted as if to chocolate and made the click. This was it, a blog about blogging for PhD candidates (PhD.umpingground) which neatly articulated my drift of yesterday and collided it with another from my research world. So, writing blogs are for writing, practising writing, practising writing for an audience, marshalling thoughts, expressing ideas, asking questions, learning how to present … Continue reading Writers and writerly things: Part 2
Yesterday, with Pirates of the Caribbean providing the surreal, comedic soundtrack, I was trying to write a short story without using a first person pronoun. Continue reading New nano fiction page