Reading & Writing

“If you don’t have time to read, you don’t have
the time
(or the tools) to write. Simple as that.”
                                                                                        – Steven King

I have always thought this to be an interesting and profound statement and to be quite honest it is very true.  I find my life is lacking if I am not taking the time to read as well as write.  As I have stated before my passion is stories I love a good story no matter the format.  To be honest it is an addiction.  I mean a massive addiction.   I have more books from the library that I probably have the right to have in my possession as I don’t know if I can get them all read in a timely manner but I can’t simply just return them, not yet I need to read the story!  I’ve got to know!  I borrowed the books because I want to know.  So right now I’m almost shamefully in the middle of Assassins Creed Revelations, the book not the game (currently on the Assassins Creed 2 in my replay), I’ve read the first several pages of Star Trek Cast No Shadows, working my way through the book the latest Ernest Cline book Armada, and on the 4th chapter of Club Dead.  Then, I am also listening to a book as well, Afterworlds by Scott Westerfeld.  Yes my life is filled with the written word .

Of course, while I am enjoying the books I’m reading the thing that has my attention right now is Afterworlds by Scott Westerfeld.  It is a bizarre story about a teenager who wrote a book in November for Nanowrimo and landed a publishing deal.  The story alternately follows her life as she enters the world of publishing and re-writes and the story she actually wrote, which is about the afterworld, and death which sounds super grim and dark which is some ways it is and in others it isn’t as dark as you would think.  It’s a YA romance.  Anyway while the story about the afterworld is interesting what has been holding my attention the most is the plight of Darcy the teenager who wrote the book and is entering the world of publishing.

I think it has my attention so, because it is all about writing and the written word and I can relate to it in a lot of ways while there are other parts that I sit there eyes slanted looking at the CD player in my car going ‘no… that can’t be how things are – really?’  I mean there are things I believe to be real and a true representation of the publishing world (whether you are a big publisher or not) such as the need to market, even before a book is out.  Yet at the same time I can’t help but wonder, if it is legit or how often it happens where, an editor wants the writer to completely change a scene from sad to happy.  While other things I know has to be an instance where Scott Westerfeld opts to use something unrealistic for the sake of a plot device such as the fact that Darcy on a completely un-edited first draft novel written in 30 day can land an $300,000 publishing contract for the book and its sequel.

(Why that seems un-real: 1) $300,000 is exorbitant for a first time published author who is fresh out of high school  2) This was accomplished in 6 months or less 3) It is a first draft, other wise known as a rough draft – those things can be just that extremely rough 4)  It was written in November for NanoWrimo!  While first/rough drafts are just that, one written in November during the event know as NanoWrimo are a special breed of novel many times and are even worse so to speak.  I am not dissing NanoWrimo – the novel I’m editing was written during NanoWrimo but it was a very rough work at the start as most are – the month is all about quantity and getting words out than quality!)

So knowing that some things are most certainly true and others are more than likely false I find my head getting messed with a little and am clamoring to hear more in some respects because publication is my goal, has been for a long wile and is what I am working toward.  Of course, self publication rather than traditional but still it is interesting to hear about the publication world as depicted by a traditionally published author is the form of prose.  I am only on disc 8 of 12 but I am curious to find out what happens next and learn more.  So I am not giving an official review or take on the book just yet but it is interesting to say the least.  (Which is nothing less than I expect from my favorite author.)

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