Morning Cuppa returns! 03/08/13 – International Women’s Day! Mike Stackpole! SFWA vs. Hydra!

For the handful of people who visit me daily, I want to apologize for my site being down yesterday. According to my web host, there was a DDoS attack being launched from the same IP cluster that my blog sits on. So they had to isolate my DNS cluster and figure out which one of us that sits on that block was behaving badly. If that’s too technical for you, just nod and smile at me, it’s over now and hopefully won’t happen again.

In other news, hey, it’s Friday em effers! While you’re counting down the hours until your no-pants-dance can begin, please enjoy some links from me.

  • Today is International Women’s Day, in honor of the accomplishments of women’s struggles everywhere for basic human rights, I’d like to share this short video about women in science fiction and fantasy:

  • Michael Stackpole, he of the astoundingly awesome writing classes, offers up his 7 Traits of Enduring Characters. Mike has an astounding ability to take all of the writing questions you never even knew you had and answer them, leaving you with that delighted, AHA! expression on your face. 
  • For those of you who haven’t been watching the back-and-forth between Random House’s new Hydra imprint and the Science Fiction Writer’s Association (SFWA), the SFWA has deemed that Hydra is not an eligible market for membership within the SFWA after examining the terms of the standard contract they offer authors. Hydra doesn’t offer an advance and puts the burden of editing and artwork on the author, which goes against the traditional reasons anyone would choose to partner with a publisher. Random House quickly responded that they were viewing this as a new type of partnership, that was “potentially lucrative”. Finally, the board of the SFWA responded that they had delisted Hydra and another Random House ebook only imprint, Alibi. As of today, that’s where it sits. It should be noted that what Random House is toying with is removing all of the risk from their publishing model by forcing authors to pay for everything up front. This is very similar to what is known as the “vanity publishing” model.