Some quick links collected in a spare segment of a manic Monday, in lieu of our usual fare (i.e. me waffling on about stuff): here are some science fiction writers going all meta on our arses and writing about writing:
- Gareth L Powell on the difference between science fiction and fantasy (excerpted from the new BSFA author survey book)
- Philip Palmer on how to write action science fiction (lots of good tips that can be applied beyond that particular subgenre, too)
- Jason Stoddard asks whether fun and meaningful science fiction is possible
And to close up with a topic for discussion, here’s Seth Godin’s take on the oft-reported death of the slush pile:
If you have something good, really good, what’s it doing in the slush pile?
Bring it to the world directly, make your own video, write your own ebook, post your own blog, record your own music.
Or find an agent, a great agent, a selective agent, one that’s almost impossible to get through to, one that commands respect and acts as a filter because after all, that’s what you’re seeking, a filtered, amplified way to spread your idea.
What do you think: is this a case of Godin just not understanding the way fiction publishing works, and hence applying an inappropriate business model to it? Or is he prophesying the unavoidable future of fiction publishing? Your thoughts and opinions would be appreciated.
3 thoughts on “Quicklinkage: writers on writing, Godin on slush”
If he’s talking about getting an agent than he’s not talking about the death of slush at all, he is talking about the transference of slush.
The slush-pile is a feature of time-constrained intermediaries. Since Godin’s “agent” is obviously a time-constrained intermediary, it’s hard to see how he / she signals the death of the slush pile.
Of course, a lot of content is being disintermediated. Self-publishing is now an omnipresent feature of our cultural landscape. I just don’t think it’s going to be the only model.
It’s moving the slush pile to the cloud. Or the agent’s desk.
The thing is, Godin pretty consistently assumes marketing is easier than it is. Not everyone can build an audience as easily as he can. Plus, most authors would rather spend their time writing than marketing. Godin’s ideas are good, for the select few that can take charge and run with them and really make it work… and by becoming more business-owners than writers.
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