No Reader Left Behind. A Great Post from Kris

This week’s article by Kris is a great one. And it should scare hell out of any new writer coming into the business. And answer questions for many fans of different author’s work.

And read the comments and see that Kris’s experience isn’t unusual at all. Maybe more extensive and she had more bad luck included than many authors, but not unusual. Remember that.

Thank heaven for the new world. This article is very, very much worth the read, folks, both for writers and readers and fans.

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12 Responses to No Reader Left Behind. A Great Post from Kris

  1. George K says:

    It’s a great time to be a new writer. As a spec fic writer I have to say I consider Dean and Kris (in my opinion) what Henry Kuttner and C.L. Moore were for the first Golden Age of Spec Fic –they helped alot of writers and careers (including a young Ray Bradbury!). I’ve heard them called Science Fiction’s ‘First Couple’. I think you two are their replacements for this the SECOND Golden Age of fiction. And this Golden age is better than the first one!

    now back to work for me!

    • dwsmith says:

      Wow, thanks, George. Even being considered in the same paragraph with Henry Kuttner and C.L. Moore is an honor. Thanks.

      • Kevin O. McLaughlin says:

        I don’t think that’s exaggeration at all. In any given time, there are a select crew of old guard writers who not only offer newer writers advice, but go out of their way to help newer writers get the information they need to get solidly launched.

        Yeah, you two are definitely on that list, Dean. ;) I routinely run into other writers who follow your work – I mention Kris and Dean, and get sage nods in response. Or, I ship newer writers who haven’t yet heard of you over to here, to get some basic education.

        The work you both do supporting other writers is awesome, and we appreciate it!

      • George K says:

        My pleasure Dean. I don’t make the comparison lightly, it sort of dawned on me in the past week. I am basically absorbing all the info on your site and your wife’s site. And at night I’ve been reading about ‘the pulp years’ and these stories of Kuttner and Moore. One was Kuttner standing by Bradbury’s desk reading his material as the newbie writer finished it and then helping him correct it and even market it. I feel like you guys are like that for us. Your writing amazing fiction but you are both taking the time to light the path for us too, I find it extremely generous. Your writing on aspects of the new publishing world, and your wife’s writing on contracts, agents, the business –its a treasure trove.

    • Mary Jo Rabe says:

      You’re so right! I wish I had thought of that comparison.

      • George K says:

        Hi Mary Jo. I didn’t really think it so much as it just came to me. I’ve scoured the Net and really, what Dean and Kris are doing is unique. I have yet to find another couple of sites like theirs. A friend of mine asked ‘what about Konrath’s site’? Konrath’s great but I don’t get the mentoring vibe from him. I mean Dean and Kris set up online and in person seminars for writers even! Of which I hope to join a bit later.

  2. TXRed says:

    Add me to the choir. It was your site, Dean, and Kris’s that showed me how I could go about publishing fiction and what to watch out for. Sarah Hoyt and her blog-followers provided encouragement, but y’all provided the business ideas and patterns. I’d never really considered publishing my fiction until I started reading your blogs earlier this year, and now I should have a short-story collection out as an e-book later this month.

  3. Jeff Ambrose says:

    I have to chime in here.

    Dean’s blog completely changed everything for me. I hem-hawed around with writing for about 10 years — from 2000 to 2009. At the end of 2009, I told my wife I was thinking about getting back into writing, and she drew the proverbial line in the sand: do it, or don’t do it, she didn’t care, but she was tired of watching me start then quit then start then quit. (I hadn’t realized she’d noticed!)

    I’d been following Dean’s blog for a while, read his goals and motivation posts (which I hope you update this year, Dean!), and made 2010 the “Year I Got Serious.”

    By the end of April, I was ready to quit again.

    After a few weeks of thinking about it, I realized I was doing the same thing I’d been doing the last ten years: outlining, writing slowly, rewriting. Basically, I was caught in all sorts of myths.

    So in the middle of May 2010, I read EVERY POST on this blog, beginning with the first one. It took me several hours. I made notes, and notes about my notes, and then spent the rest of the day thinking about it. Like I said, I was caught in all the myths, so it was really a leap of faith moment for me. But I realized that I’d been doing the same thing for 10 years with no good result, so what did I have to lose writing a story a week and following Heinlein’s rules to near perfection?

    That changed everything for me, and since May 2010 I’ve written dozens of short stories, several short novels, and three full novels. About 1,000,000 words. I’ve never had so much fun or have been so happy as a writer since that day.

    It’s a long way off, but I hope in 20 years or so, I’ll be in a position to pay it forward and do what Dean and Kris are doing.

    So: Thanks Dean!

    • dwsmith says:

      Thanks, Jeff, but always remember the key is that you did it. I just held up a few signs with suggestions, you took the jump, you did the work day-in-and-day-out and that’s the key.

      One fine day, a ton of years ago, one afternoon at Damon and Kate’s house, I tried to thank Damon Knight for all the help he had given me. He chuckled in Damon’s way and said, “I didn’t write any of your stories, you did.” And then he changed the subject. But I got his point.

      But I could tell he was pleased that I tried to thank him. And I am pleased, Jeff, that you are thanking me and Kris. But honestly, we aren’t writing your stories or doing the hard work you are doing.

      So thanks. Now go back to work.

  4. allynh says:

    Here’s another NYTimes article that fits what you guys are talking about. The article starts slow, not getting to the heart of the issue till near the end.

    Booksellers Resisting Amazon’s Disruption

  5. allynh says:

    This is a Charlie Rose episode that goes to the heart of what you guys have been talking about. The myths, the fears, the whine of elitism, and of course Charlie is clueless as usual. HA!

    A discussion about the history and future of books

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