Saturday, March 11, 2006

A Six-Pack of Blogs for Writers

Editor Joe has asked for blog entries directing readers to a "six-pack" of blogs, preferably centered on some sort of theme. Joe did "B" blogs, and Scalzi did sf writers' blogs. Other people have covered other themes. I'm going to do blogs about writing, because that's where my head is at the moment, and I should be able to put together such an entry quickly, before I turn into a pumpkin.

The Write Stuff is our friend Shelly's writing blog, over on LiveJournal. Shelly is best known to J-Bloggers for Presto Speaks!, with all its helpful stuff about blogging, but I've been reading The Write Stuff ever since it was also called Presto Speaks! (Don't ask). Sometimes she just does entries listing named used by spammers, because they are often amusing, and can be used as character names. Other times she'll tell us about what's happening with her own writing, or write an in-depth essay about the writing process, or bad advice given to writers.

Making Light used to be entirely written (aside from comments) by Teresa Nielsen Hayden, an editor with Tor Books. These days there are also entries by her husband, editor Patrick Nielsen Hayden, in whose hands the fate of Heirs of Mâvarin currently lies. Jim Macdonald also contributes. The entries are not always about writing, editing and publishing, but many of them are. Currently on the front page you'll find entries about hamsters, amusing Dublin nicknames, prescription and non-prescription drugs, an attack on food warning labels, the use of uniformed military for partisan purposes (which is illegal), a question about vegans and chalk (this may be an open thread entry), FEMA, why perpetual copyright is a Bad Idea, a boneheaded attempt in Arizona to let students opt out of assignments they find "offensive," lyrics that can be sung to different tunes, the Hugo Awards, snow in Brooklyn, a predatory agency for screenwriters, and truthfulness in non-fiction. The discussion threads are long and lively and literary, with lots of writers hanging out there. Good stuff, and a certified time-sucker.

Writer's Edge, by Georganna Hancock, is about "English words, books and writing." Every day she has something interesting or helpful to writers, whether it's about e-books, press releases, the em-dash, the future of libraries, or weird new ways to do a book signing. In other words, it's chock full of tools for writers and bloggers, and a fun read as well.

A Stop at Willoughby is the prolific Patick's blog about writing--mostly. He recently wrote a series of posts there about racism and publishing, and related issues. The blog name, by the way, comes from an episode of the original version of The Twilight Zone.

CIW: The Other Invisible is the home of Jess's Writer's Weekly Question, in which writers and others are invited to blog about the writing process. Jess doesn't always keep up with the weekly schedule, but the questions are thought-provoking when she does them, and sometimes she does a two-fer. Jess is in academia, which is also interesting to read about. She's about to give an interview to CNN, and the play-by-play on that is an education in itself.

I'm not sure whether to mention Julie's Oh My! She's At It Again! or Julie's Web Journal at Stately Barrett Manor, so I'll mention them both. She writes about her writing in both places, and other stuff. She does a lot of web-related work, but she's also written at least one radio play and other fiction, including but not limited to fan fiction. She has a good, solid take on the business end of writing, but also writes about times when a draft of something is being difficult, and why. When it's done, there is much rejoicing. (Yes, she's a Python fan.)

Honorable mentions: DesLily is currently writing a series about writing, Sara occasionally comes up for air long enough to tell us how her novel is going, and Bea writes about the journaling process, and how the online and offline versions differ. We know that John Scalzi has another blog, Whatever, that deals with his writing a bit more than By the Way does. And Maryanne sometimes gives us tantalizing details about the book she decided not to publish. Last but not least, Mike Porcello, an NYU college student and nephew of my long-dead high school best friend/boyfriend, writes about his writing, among other things. Strong language and mature themes warning on that one, but it's clear the kid can write. Dan would have been proud, I think.

Oh, and I write about writing, too, mostly on my LJ. Hi.



DesLily said...

wow honorable mention! how cool!
does this mean i have to actually write something intelligent now? heh.

julie said...

Gosh. *blush* Thanks for the plug!

Shelly said...

Thanks for the link.

Patrick said...

Thanks so much for the plug, Karen. I'm flattered to be in such fine company.


Bea said...

Thank you for the mention, Karen. You summarized the heart of my blog! I am flattered that you included me in the honorable mentions!! And I'm on my way to check out your six pack picks..., and the other HMs, so I've got some new discoveries to take care of. See you around! Bea