Sunday, February 27, 2011

Monday, February 21, 2011

Article Recs

Happy Presidents Day, Arkhamites! Since I have the day off, I got up at the crack of noon and caught up on some blog posts and articles. Here are three of my favorites:

1. 20 Tips for Writing the Cozy or Traditional Mystery

Josh Lanyon's tips are an entertaining review of the rules of the genre. I especially like that Josh admits that some rules only apply if you want a mainstream publisher:

17 - Bad words are a no-no. Cozy readers take a dim view of potty mouths. The F-word is verboten, and taking the Lord's name in vain will send you straight to publishing Hell. Obviously I’m talking to those of you with an eye on a mainstream publisher. The rest of us can do whatever the fuck we like.

2. A Life in Books: C. J. Sansom

I found this googling for more information on C. J. Sansom.  It's an indepth-interview with the man, focusing on his Matthew Shardlake mysteries.  I liked reading about how he knew he would have to get rid of sidekick Mark from Dissolution in favor of the "meatier" Jack Barak for the rest of the series.

3. Bankrupt!

Oy--Borders has filed Chapter 11. This post explains what that will mean to authors.

Enjoy the posts--and feel free to share your thoughts on them!

Friday, February 18, 2011

Series Rec: C. J. Sansom's Matthew Shardlake Mysteries

I'm partway through C.J. Sansom's Matthew Shardlake Mysteries. They're set in England during Henry VIII's reign, and feature historical characters like Thomas Cromwell.

I'm loving these so far. Matthew Shardlake is a London lawyer who begins as an ardent Reformer but starts going through a crisis of faith as he sees that Cromwell is just as corrupt (and spilling just as much blood) as the Catholics in power before him.

Matthew solves murders with a loyal but uncouth rogue named Jack Barak, a patralineal descendant of converso Jews. Jack isn't much religious, but he has a sentimental (and potentially dangerous) attachment to his Jewish heritage.

I adore Jack and his relationship with Matthew. (Is it a bromantic friendship? More father-son? Maybe it's a bit of both.) Sadly, Jack doesn't come in till the second book, but the first one is worth reading anyway.

I love mysteries, history and religious issues, so these books are perfect for me. Overall, I think Sansom does a brilliant job of bringing the Tudor period to life. The mysteries themselves are so-so, but since I love the characters and setting, I'm ok with that.

My Goodreads Review of Dissolution: short and to the point!

My Goodreads Review of Dark Fire: more in depth!

My Goodreads Review of Sovereign: also in depth!

Sunday, February 6, 2011

How not to promote your book!

Check out Josh Lanyon's article on Reviews by Jessewave to avoid dirty--not to mention pathetic--tricks: Nice Guys Finish Last

Saturday, February 5, 2011

My First Blog Award!


Sticky Notes Stories honored this blog with the "I'm Sticking Around!" award. Read about it here.

Friday, February 4, 2011

February Writing Goals

I'm carrying two of my goals over from January--but since I didn't make the 2,000 words per day, I'm changing it to a more modest 500 words per day:

1. Write a minimum of 500 words per day.
2. Finish first draft of Not So Safe.
3. Finish one Halcrest Fantasy story.