Photo by Rob Brewer
-More than one of them cried out in pain, “This is impossible, my brain hurts!”-
Write what you know.
Really? Do I have to?
It’s because of these four, seemingly innocuous words that people like me spend hours staring at the damn cursor on the soul-suckingly blank screen. How often have you shied away from writing something you’re interested in because you simply do not feel that you know enough? Tech specs, genre specifics, races, clichés, real names of types of laser beams…
I didn’t grow up reading Science Fiction. I was a slow reader and the true fascination for me was fantasy, but I could only swallow about a book a year. So when, for the first time, I sat down to try my sonic-galacto-pen at Sci-Fi, I was stumped and all I could hear, bleeding through my brain in a repetitive, tin-robotic drawl, was “you don’t know anything about science fiction, so you can’t write it.”
Gail Carson Levine
Showcase Episode: 20 Minutes with Gail Carson Levine
Workshop Episode: Workshop Episode 4
I grew up in upper Manhattan, Washington Heights to be exact, a hilly, pretty neighborhood. My family lived across the street from P.S. 173, my elementary school, and from a park where I used to climb what my friends and I called the “danger” rocks, which were part of the palisades that overlook the Hudson River. Going up, clinging to cracks with my fingertips, terrified, I’d think, “If I live, I will never do this again.” When I reached the top I’d work my way down and start over just as frightened as before.
From third grade through high school I wrote stories and poems, and a few of my poems were published in an anthology of student writing, but I never thought of becoming a writer. The authors of most of my favorite childhood books were dead (Mark Twain, L.M. Montgomery, Louisa May Alcott, Anna Sewell). I knew a few artists because my dad owned a commercial art studio, and I saw actors in the movies and on stage, but I didn’t think of writing as work that any modern person did. (more…)
Showcase Episode: 20 Minutes with Gail Carriger
Workshop Episode: Workshop Episode 3
New York Times Bestselling author Gail Carriger writes to cope with being raised in obscurity by an expatriate Brit and an incurable curmudgeon. She escaped small town life and inadvertently acquired several degrees in Higher Learning. Ms. Carriger then traveled the historic cities of Europe, subsisting entirely on biscuits secreted in her handbag. She resides in the Colonies, surrounded by fantastic shoes, where she insists on tea imported from London.
The Parasol Protectorate books are: Soulless, Changeless, Blameless, Heartless, and Timeless (March 2012). Soulless won the ALA’s Alex Award. A manga version will release March 2012. She is currently writing young adult books set in the same universe ~ the Finishing School series (Feb. 2013). Soon she will begin a new adult series, The Parasol Protectorate Abroad (Fall 2013).
We recently discovered that some emails being sent to us were NOT making it to our Inbox.
That’s deeply disturbing to us. I mean, Brion and I are social, community-oriented people… we’ve sent out inquiries to authors and publishers, invited writers and other podcasters to join us in one capacity or another, and generally tried to reach out to the world. The thought that some of you responded to us and we didn’t receive that response is keeping us up at night!
We’ve resolved the issue, but we wanted to let everyone know: If you’ve written us and we haven’t responded, we didn’t receive your email! PLEASE reach out to us again. We respond to queries and questions and requests pretty quickly, so if you don’t hear from us in a few days, something’s wrong. We love email and feedback and questions and we would never just ignore your message.
One of the best ways to contact us is through the Contact Us… page. That message form is a direct line into our inboxes. If all else fails, use it to get a message to us.
We apologize for the inconvenience and appreciate everyone’s input so far. RTP is an important project for us we’re grateful for your interest and support.
I know… “Zero-Point-Five”?
But SO much has happened since we started this project and Brion and I wanted to update everyone on our progress and some of the cool things we’ve discovered, both about the podcast and ourselves.
Roundtable Podcast: Episode Zero-Point-Five
[warning: contains mature language]
Podcast: Download (Duration: 29:12 — 26.7MB)
photo by "Sam UL" on flickr
Fear is the great un-balancer. It distorts and narrows our awareness until we can only see what’s directly in front of us, whether it’s the blank page, or that query letter to an editor, or the send button on an email to someone who doesn’t know you.
When Brion and I made the commitment to launch this podcast, the first step was to make a list of authors to have on the show as Guest Hosts. We set our sights high… we wanted great discussions with credible and creative individuals. We built our wish list of dream hosts and, looking at it, I remember thinking, “Oh yeah… I’d listen to that podcast.”
First on the list was J. Daniel Sawyer. I knew his site and clicked the “Contact” link… and froze. I had drafted a brief introduction – very formal without being stiff – hoping it conveyed that we were more than just a couple schmucks on a lark. I pasted it into the contact page… and my pulse started pounding in my ears. I was scared… terrified, to be honest. (more…)
Showcase Episode: 20 Minutes with Nathan Lowell
Workshop Episode: Workshop Episode 2
Facebook Page: http://facebook.com/nathan.o.lowell
Nathan Lowell always wanted to be a writer. In 2007, he finally did something about it. Eight books, several short stories, and a novella or two later, he’s now a full time author and award winning podcaster.
In addition to being a full-time author, Nathan holds MA and PhD degrees in Educational Technology. He occasionally teaches graduate school classes. (more…)
J. Daniel Sawyer
Showcase Episode: 20 Minutes with J. Daniel Sawyer
Workshop Episode: Workshop Episode 1
J. Daniel Sawyer is a hat-wearing, obsessive-compulsive nutcase attempting to write his way out of the loony bin. He’s the author of numerous fiction podcasts including Sculpting God, Down From Ten, and The Antithesis Progression (which earned him a spot as a 2009 Parsec Finalist). Lacking in personal qualities things that make for respectable character (such as the ability to sit still and shut up), he’s forced to channel his lack of decorum into the fields of photography, a/v production, and writing for outfits like LinuxJournal and the occasional speculative fiction anthology.
When not working on his new secret steampunk fantasy adventure or getting into other mischief, he can be heard hosting the skeptical salon The Polyschizmatic Reprobates Hour, and as the narrator of Free Will, book two of The Antithesis Progression, both available through http://www.jdsawyer.net. (more…)