Dan Goodman's prediction and politics journal.

Thursday, October 02, 2003

Thursday October 2, 2003. Completely over my very bad cold, or whatever it was.

This began as part of a several-LiveJournals discussion of Anne Rice's views on editing. I think a discussion of this can stand on its own.

2003-09-27 18:27
"This sense of the whole five-dimensional object is very fragile. It's hard to hold it in one's head."

How _do_ you hold it in your head?

I "see" it as a five-dimensional tactile sculpture. I won't say it's the _right_ way for me, since I haven't yet had professional sales; but it seems to be working better than other things I've tried. For at least some people, being able to "visualize" with one or more senses makes things easier to grasp and to remember.

2003-09-27 19:22
I'm sorry, I'm a random visitor and you don't know me from a hole in the ground (though I assure you I am not, in fact, a hole in the ground), but I've never heard anyone else talk about it that way before.

Because, see, that's exactly how things are to me. All things, not just writing. But writing, most of all. A giant, tactile sculpture in my head, reducible in words only on a scale equal to itself.

It's nice to know it's not just me.

2003-09-29 16:03
I'm envious; I've only recently managed to think like that in a structured way.

For a fair amount of information about different ways people think, google on "learning styles" or "styles of learning".

I think this side discussion ought to be moved elsewhere. Your journal or mine?
Some helpful hints for beginning writers.

Q Has this idea been used?
A Yes -- twenty to forty years before you think it possibly could have been. Don't let that stop you from writing your story; remember that "boy meets girl" has been used more than once. But don't use the idea only in a surprise ending.

However, if it's on an editor's "Argghh -- not again!!" list, you probably shouldn't submit to that editor.

Q Is it possible to sell a fantasy novel which does/doesn't have [elves/dwarves/trolls/rutabagas] in it?
A Yes. Go to the nearest good general bookstore, and see what's on their shelves. If they carry Locus magazine, buy a copy and read the lists of forthcoming books and books sold.

Q How long should an sf/fantasy novel be?
A Some published novels should've been cut down to 5,000 words. Oh -- you mean how long a novel you intend to submit should be. http://ralan.com has summaries of each publisher's requirements and links to publishers' websites. See what the publishers say about length.

Q My story has almost no magic in it. Can I submit it as fantasy?
A Ellen Kushner's _Swordspoint_ has no magic in it, and was published and sold as fantasy.

Q How do I tell whether my novel is fantasy or science fiction?
A If it has spaceships in it, it's science fiction no matter how much magic it contains. (By current standards. In the 1950's/1960's, starship and sorcery fiction was called "science fantasy". Five years from now, it could be different again.)

Q How much does it cost to get permission to quote from a song?
A Sometimes nothing at all. Sometimes a whole lot -- you can't afford The Rolling Stones.

Public Release: 2-Oct-2003
American Sociological Association
Increased religiosity in countries affects attitudes toward sexual morality, study shows
When a nation's overall levels of religious belief and attendance are high, its citizens voice greater disapproval of divorce, homosexuality, abortion and prostitution –- issues involving sexual morality. But religiosity is less likely to spur such disapproval for cheating on taxes or accepting bribes in public office, says two Penn State researchers.

Oil and gas will run out too fast for doomsday global warming scenarios to materialise, according to a controversial new analysis

Early female-dominated societies lost their power to men when they started herding cattle, a new study demonstrates

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