Morning Cuppa – 05/01/13 – GoodReads! New SFWA site design! Tor piracy!

Happy May Day! This is the original Labor Day as well as the day of many pagan festivals in celebration of spring and fertility. So take the day off work and get your groove on!

  • Are you an author who is not taking advantage of GoodReads? Have you been too intimidated to take the plunge or just feel like you don’t have time? Or maybe you’re feeling grumpy about Amazon buying them… As Joanna Penn writes, you can either take control of your account or risk readers entering your information for you. Which might not be all bad as long as they love your work, right? Fortunately for you, she’s got a guest blog post by Mayor A. Lan that takes a deep dive into the site and teaches you everything you need to know about it.
  • After years of dedicated service, the old website design for the SFWA has been replaced by a new WordPress design. Go check it out, ooh and aah over how pretty it looks now.
  • So how’s that whole DRM-free thing going for you Tor? How precipitously have sales dropped?
    Oh… not at all? Well, okay, I’ll just continue about my work then.

Morning Cuppa – 03/22/13 – PAX! Piracy! Publishing!

A glorious Friday to all of you, hope that you’re gearing up for a rewarding weekend, whatever that means for you.

  • As I may have mentioned yesterday, I’m a bit jelly that my buds are currently PAX-ing it up without me in Boston right now. Thankfully, I can catch a vid stream of all the events and check out the line up via Twitch!
  • Simon & Schuster will share their stats on internet piracy with their agents and authors now. I think it’d be hard to quantify true numbers, but they state that they will, “provide information about the number of infringements identified and takedown notices sent to infringing sites, success rates in removing infringements, the types of sites where infringement is occurring, the specific urls and geographic distribution of sites where unauthorized copies are offered and more.”
  • Passive Voice has an excerpt about self publishing and how the tables have turned and the industry is now being lead by cool new indie authors who are making their own rules.

Morning Cuppa – 02/05/13 – Pixar’s story rules! Bye bye B&N! Arrr, piracy!

Today is all about the author. Book reviews, book distributors, the craft of storytelling, content ownership and piracy, arrr!

  • Website Gollancz is seeking geeks to review genre fiction. Sign up and they’ll send you a book and some cool sounding swag when you return your first review.
  • “People still like to walk into a Barnes & Noble and discover new authors that way,” says Laura Hazard Owen. “I worry about them being gone.” I do too. Even as a person who is steeped in the internet, I yearn for a good bookstore. ┬áMy neck of the woods is serviced almost exclusively by Barnes & Noble. There’s an independent bookstore on Palm Beach, but frankly it’s geared more towards the millionaire and billionaire octogenarians who live or visit there.
  • And as we march boldly into a brave new world, ownership of your personal creations will increasingly become a battleground, even for the most normal people. For example: a school board is trying to create a policy that states that anything created by any student or teacher, from drawings to lesson plans to apps created for a class, would belong to the school district.
  • Pixar storyboard artist Emma Coats shared 22 rules of storytelling that she has gleaned during her time working for the studio. These are outstanding little gems for any writer to squirrel away. Really, I could just post all of them here, but here are some samples:
    • #5: Simplify. Focus. Combine characters. Hop over detours. You’ll feel like you’re losing valuable stuff but it sets you free.
    • #11: Putting it on paper lets you start fixing it. If it stays in your head, a perfect idea, you’ll never share it with anyone.
    • #14: Why must you tell THIS story? What’s the belief burning within you that your story feeds off of? That’s the heart of it.
  • And finally today, Chuck Wendig shares some thoughts on the thorny issue for content creators of many stripes, piracy.