Category: authors

Author Career Crisis; Trans Peeps on Jared Leto; Ellen Breaks Twitter; Ender’s Game & Orson Scott Card

Author Career Crisis

This is interesting because we hear so much babble (I can’t think of a better word) about there never being a better time for writers than now. The article gets into the many mid-list authors and even bestselling authors who are trying to figure out ways to survive and maintain viable incomes with so many changes happening in publishing.

The piece goes into more detail and names a few writers as examples. This paragraph sums things up well:

Thomson is a veteran from a now-deserted battlefield. Rates of attrition among so-called “mid-list” writers, steady professionals who can no longer find publishers to support them, have begun to rise alarmingly. But drop a generation or two, and you find parallel stories: young writers grappling with a wholly new – and in some respects, hostile – literary landscape. In a business that relies on keeping up appearances, no one wants to admit this. Privately, there’s a lot of fear.

I know several I won’t name here in this post who would say these authors should all be self-publishing. And maybe they should. I’ve had to make several career changes I never thought I’d have to make in my lifetime and self-publishing has been one of the biggest. But the problem with self-publishing is that we’re also dealing with a new, lawless brand of authors who may or may not have talent, who are willing to sell their proverbial souls to sell a book, and who will stop at nothing shy of murder to get onto a best seller list.

So yes, it’s a great time in many ways for authors. But it’s also a frustrating time for authors who play by the rules. But more important, more and more authors are questioning how they should be playing their own games now.

You can read more here.

Trans Peeps Mad at Jared Leto

I haven’t seen Dallas Buyers Club yet so I can’t offer any solid criticism about this. It seems that trans people are speaking out about Jared Leto’s performance as a trans woman. They claim it was exaggerated, stereotypical, and cliché.

If you thought Jared Leto’s performance was anything other than an exaggerated, stereotyped, cliché damaging to trans people, f off,’ one said on Twitter.

 ‘One small step for Jared Leto One giant blow for the trans movement,’ another added. Another Twitter user said: ‘The fact that every trans person on my [timeline] found Jared Leto’s portrayal of a trans person offensive makes me not really want to see that film.’

British trans activist Paris Lees, writing in The Independent, said it was not an Oscar-worthy performance as she did not recognize in Rayon any trans woman she knows.

‘For truly accurate portrayals of trans people, cast trans actors, I say,’ she said.

This reminds me a lot of the discussion in gay forums back when Brokeback Mountain was getting so much attention. Hollywood has a long history of doing things like this, and it’s all about money and getting attention. Right now, anything LGBT is hot and they are going to capitalize on it as much as they can. There’s nothing inherently wrong with this, but they never seem to get it right.

I will watch Dallas Buyer’s Club and review it.

You can read more here.

Ellen Breaks Twitter

The only reason I’m posting about this is because of the photo itself (and I love Ellen). I couldn’t care less about Twitter or the Oscar Awards in a general sense. Ellen took a selfie and Twitter went BERserk.

For the selfie, DeGeneres was quickly surrounded by two of the night’s winners Lupita Nyong’o and Jared Leto as well as nominees Bradley Cooper, Julia Roberts, Jennifer Lawrence and Meryl Streep along with Brad Pitt.

I also can’t help thinking this might be the last of the privileged generation of old time film stars. I could be wrong. But the fact is that even with all the Oscar hype most people in the US didn’t even see the films that were nominated. Publishing isn’t the only thing changing. The film industry is going through its own restructuring right now.

You can read more here, and view the photo.

I wish James Franco had been in it.

Ender’s Game & Orson Scott Card

Speaking of films, I wanted to do a follow up on Orson Scott Card and Ender’s Game. Here’s a link to several of my posts on the topic. In short, Orson Scott Card is the author of the book, Ender’s Game, and he’s always been highly outspoken with homophobic, discriminatory comments about gays. LGBT people called for a boycott of the film version of Ender’s Game last year and Card’s gay hate comments seemed to shadow everything associated with the film, in spite of all efforts to contain it. I’ll be honest, even though I posted a few times about all this, I actually care so little about Orson Scott Card or anything he’s associated with I mentally blocked him out, forgot all about the Ender’s Game movie, and didn’t even think about it again until just this weekend when I saw that Ender’s Game had already gone to video on Demand. In other words, my own personal boycott wasn’t even conscious.

So I did a simple search about how Ender’s Game did at the box office and came up with a few interesting things.

The film’s backers have been in panic mode ever since a boycott call was launched by an organisation called Geeks Out, protesting at Card’s views on gay marriage, as well as his comparison of President Obama to Hitler.

All those connected to the film have been forced on the defensive, with actor Harrison Ford defending Ender’s Game by claiming “There is nothing in the film or the book addressing [Card’s] current dispositions, or prejudices”, and director Gavin Hood saying: “It has been a real dilemma for me: I love the book … and it’s very difficult for me to reconcile that with his clearly contrary views to the ones I hold on the issue of gay rights.”

More here.

This next article says because of a lackluster box office appeal Ender’s Game will not have a sequel.

 The Hollywood Reporter compiled the views of a number of analysts whose job it is to review the franchise potential of blockbuster wannabes. Most felt Gavin Hood’s film, which has been targeted by gay rights activists, would struggle to make back its $110m budget after debuting with a solid but unspectacular $28m in North America.

More about that here.

I won’t be watching Ender’s Game on Demand, or anywhere else, thanks to Orson Scott Card’s vituperative comments on gays.

Lazy Beagle Entertainment for Readers and Books

Lazy Beagle Entertainment for Readers and Books

When I first heard about Lazy Beagle Entertainment for Readers and Books, I was more than pleasantly surprised. This weekend the owners of the site sent out e-mails asking for feedback and this is what I wrote.

For a long time I’ve been wishing someone would put together an online community where books, readers, publishers, and authors can come together. And when I first learned about Lazy Beagle Entertainment and saw what they were doing I was more than thrilled. One of the biggest things for me is that it’s easy to navigate and everything is up front and clear. When you do a search (and I tried several times) what you’re looking for comes up without any issues. And the information that is there is far more detailed than anything on goodreads or Amazon. One of the issues I find with most web sites nowadays is that there isn’t enough information, and I think readers are vetting books and authors now more than ever before. But the creators of Lazy Beagle seem to be working very hard to make this one of the fastest growing web sites online to date for books and readers. And the main focus is about books and authors in all genres, not just one. It really is a web site bringing all authors and readers together in a positive way.
You can get to Lazy Beagle by clicking this link. As I said in the feedback, it is open to ALL genres, not just one.
This is from the “About” page:
 Welcome to Lazy Beagle Entertainment founded by author Patrick Wendling-Markwell and husband, and sometimes co-author, Rondal D. Markwell. Ever find it hard to find self-published books and other books not promoted with a million dollar advertising budget. Looking for that hidden gem? Well here at LBE we will link you with your favorite published and self-published authors, and give authors a prominent place to link their work and promote themselves, so they are no longer hidden gems but displayed diamonds! We will provide links to all locations the book is available for purchase, and all available sites where you can follow the author. This page was started originally to be for self-published authors, but we have opened it up to any and all authors, self-published or not.
I didn’t want to get into a long explanation in the feedback, but one reason why I’ve been wishing someone would put together a web site like lazybeagle is because a lot of authors don’t get a fair chance these days. What I mean by that is there are a lot of great books that are up against a lot of competition and it’s hard for new authors to get recognition in a fair sense. Nowhere is this more evident than in the romance genre. One m/m author recently posted about how she’s never been rejected and she’s always been welcomed with open arms by all romance review sites…even though she writes m/m romance. Well, I can’t speak for her, but I know about one hundred more who write just as well as she does who are not welcomed with open arms, nor are they even acknowledged. So I think web sites like Lazy Beagle, and anything else that follows, where new authors can get a chance to showcase their books is about the nicest thing I’ve seen all year.

Jill Elaine Hughes: American Playwright

When I first met Jill Hughes, I was more than impressed by her writing style. Like most dedicated career writers, Jill’s professional work varies. She has the ability…which isn’t easy to do…to switch from technical writing to fiction without making it look difficult. And the one thing that’s always impressed me the most about Jill’s work is that the tight, well-trained, ability to craft words into sentences and form paragraphs is there.

And I just read where Jill has been mentioned here, as an American Playwright now.

She is currently the only American playwright to have her work included in three consecutive editions of Applause Books’ prestigious BEST AMERICAN SHORT PLAYS anthologies, where she is privileged to share pages with such dramatic powerhouses as Neil LaBute, John Guare, David Lindsay-Abaire and David Ives, among others. She is also a member of Chicago Writers’ Bloc, a playwrights’ collective.

To read more, follow the link above. It will lead you to more links and descriptions about Jill’s plays.