I am still fallen off the face of the earth, trying to get caught up on things. If I owe you an email, a response, a critique, etc., etc., it's coming. I have one more big deadline to meet this weekend, and then, it's coming. And I still have this dratted cold. But in the interest of closing tabs…
The divine Sara Zarr on what she learned from being a National Book Awards judge in the young reader's category: "Richard Rodriguez says that the reader re-creates the book when he reads it. If that’s true, and I think it probably is, that means 100 readers could have 100 different experiences of the same book. Which can be frustrating, but is also kind of magical and also tells you something about what it is to be a person, an individual."
You MUST READ Connie Willis' Blackout and All Clear. (Yes, it's out!) A tremendous achievement by her. (If any of you grousers about the locations of tube stations or whatever show up in the comments, I will only pity you. This is an amazing work.) I'll stick up a post for anyone who wants to discuss sometime this week. Sir Godfrey 4-ever.
Maud shares a quote on the inconvenient timing of revision epiphanies; this is so true, it has been part of my process for years. I think it was an interview with Ernest Lehman that I first saw this stated–he said he'd turn in the draft of a script, only to immediately phone up the studio (or Hitchcock or whomever; I've never been able to relocate this interview) and say, "Don't read it. I know what's wrong with it now!" There is no quicker way to get distance from your work than to hand it over to someone else.
Finally, cover contest! Which will culminate with a week of celebrating amazing alt historical and steampunk novels beginning Dec. 13. Mainly focused on YA, but other things will undoubtedly sneak in. Spread the word.