This Friday I propose we all forget about the pandemic (metaphorically) and focus on our TBR piles. Stay home this weekend, fix yourself a pitcher of tasty cocktails (or mocktails–your choice), grab a lawn chair or hammock and get reading. I will admit I’m spurred on by my own weekend reading list. Mine is all client-and-submission related, but the rest of the proposal stands. And you should feel free to tackle all those great vacation reads you’d normally enjoy on a plane or by a pool. (If you have a pool in your yard, even better.)
Not sure where to start? You are in luck. This week’s links feature lots of book lists. So if you are wondering what to read, or just what to pick up first, check below for inspiration. Ignore the insanity of the outside world and sink into a romance or a fantasy or thriller for distraction. Cheers!
This Week’s Links:
Most Anticipated: The Great Second-Half 2020 Book Preview. – Frequent flyers here know I love this feature over at The Millions. Twice a year they present an enormous list of books coming out in the half-year or so ahead.
What 100 Writers Have Been Reading During Quarantine. – Tons of great ideas here. Some are recs, some just straight lists of what these writers have been reading recently.
The 50 Most Impactful Black Books of the Last 50 Years. – As the title says. Fantastic assortment.
John Scalzi and Mary Robinette Kowal in Conversation. – A great chat between these two authors where they discuss process, science fiction, and more. For those of you looking for writing inspiration instead of reading inspiration (or both).
Independent Bookstore Day swag. – Independent Bookstore Day is creeping up, and you can now buy swag in the form of face masks or coffee mugs to honor/support the event.
2020 First Novel Prize: The Long List. – The long list for this year’s First Novel Prize by the Center for Fiction. I’m not sure every single one of these titles are out yet–I’ve heard buzz about ARCs for a couple–but many are, and you can always make a mental note for later if something appeals.
Welcome to Friday, which this week happens to kick off the long Memorial Day weekend here in the U.S., the unofficial start of summer. That means vacations, BBQs, sand and surf, lazy days, stacks of books to read, and — in the publishing world — summer hours (half-day Fridays). The reality, of course, is that work does not cease simply because we have a bit more daylight (Weekend? What weekend?), but it’s nice to dream.
And on that note, I offer up this week’s selection of Friday links, some of which are a bit dreamy, and all of which I hope you’ll find intriguing/entertaining/educational, etc. Enjoy, and have a fabulous weekend!
The Art of Staying Focused in a Distracting World – Social media, email, DVR queue, etc. There’s always something vying for your attention. How do you get anything done anymore? Interesting article.
Writing Excuses: The Short Story with Mary Robinette Kowal – A great podcast on short story writing, with excellent tips for anyone looking to give them a go or simply improve on their current efforts.
Kindle Worlds: Amazon Rewrites the Rules of Fan Fiction – A look at Amazon’s announcement regarding their new plans to monetize the world of fan fiction.
Amazon’s Kindle Worlds: Instant Thoughts – Author John Scalzi’s first take on why Amazon’s new program may not be the greatest thing for writers.
Neil Gaiman’s A Calendar of Tales – Gaiman’s collaborative short story project with Blackberry is complete. Check out the results, including some very cool art created by Gaiman’s readers.
Last week on Booktalk Nation, author John Scalzi interviewed author Joe Hill about writing, genre, and his new book NOS4A2. Between the two of them, these guys have written a number of books, short stories, blog posts, etc. Whether you write genre fiction or something else, you should check out the video of their chat, because much of what they have to say is just plain interesting if you have any sort of curiosity about writing and publishing, and the bulk of their advice applies to any type of writer. They’re also pretty damn amusing to watch.
Just a heads up: the interview is about an hour long, so keep that in mind before you hit the play button. Enjoy!