Writing and Reading Links (#SFWApro)

Good advice for writing fight scenes.
•A couple of posts from Wicked Cozy Authors about Scrivener, which I use too. I never let go of an old draft until I have the final draft polished and done. Scrivener keeps them much more neatly than in a desktop folder (it has other features too, which I don’t use as much as I should—the post touches on those).
•Here’s NPR’s crowdsourced list of the 100 top specfic books.
•Martin Scorsese discusses the language of film, how a film reflects the concerns of its time and how hard it is to judge the films that will have lasting power. Vertigo, now considered one of Hitchcock’s triumphs, was pretty much dismissed as par for the course when it came out, and the film stock itself later deteriorated until it underwent a major restoration. Scorsese’s point being, in part, that assuming what’s worth preserving is what had the big box office is a short-sighted view. There’s a lot in the piece that seems relevant to writers and readers too (case in point, how much movie success influences what’s on the A-list of Great Books).
•Rebecca Rosen in the Atlantic looks at current availability of books published from the 1800s through now, and finds that books from the 19th century are actually more available than the 1950s through the 1990s. Her conclusion is that it’s a mix of copyright restrictions and the fact publishers are no longer so keen on maintaining a backlist. Which is in part, according to Kevin O’Donnell, because a 1979 tax case reduces the amount publishers can write off for books that don’t sell, to the point they’re better off printing fewer copies of any given book.
Of course, pretty much any out-of-print book is available online, but still, it’s much easier if backlist is convenient and ready to hand when a customer’s browsing the store.
•The challenges of creating a Netflix-subscription service for books.
•One library cuts its budget by throwing away books. Which undercuts my theory that print libraries aren’t going to go away because hey, they’re not just going to throw out all the books, are they?
•Here’s the country’s first completely bookless library.
•A look at the poet Yeats’ fascination with the occult.
•Who’d have thought that Ant-Man would get a movie before Wonder Woman? A call for more female super-hero films. Another blog links to a recent short WW film.
•Marvel reaches a settlement with Gary Friedrich over Ghost Rider. This follows a ruling partially in Friedrich’s favor: Marvel doesn’t have the right to renew the copyright indefinitely. However Marvel also has grounds for claiming it was a work-for-hire, which isn’t so good for Friedrich. Some more links on the topic here.
•At Tor.com, a couple of staffers read through the various authors Gary Gygax once listed as influences on D&D. It’s an interesting series, even though I’ve read some of everyone they’ve covered so far. But lord, does it make me feel old to see Poul Anderson, Fritz Leiber and other writers still publishing when I was a kid now apparently classed as Great Old Classics (or depending on their taste, not so great).
•The Authors Guild suggests Google’s book-digitization project should be shut down until Congress rules. Publishers Weekly thinks that’s a long shot.

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One response to “Writing and Reading Links (#SFWApro)

  1. Pingback: Kids today and what they read (#SFWApro) | Fraser Sherman's Blog

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