Thursday, October 06, 2005

Writers' blogs

NancyKay Shapiro writes to say that her first novel, What Love Means to You People, is being published by St Martin's Press next year. And, as you do, she has started a blog.

Well, you don't get to be published by the Thomas Dunne imprint of St Martin's without impressing some tough judges.

NancyKay's blog provides various links so you can get the flavour of her book very easily. One of the main themes is a love affair between two gay men, and the setting is very definitely New York -- and so, as usual, the book is not going to appeal to everyone. But, once again, we see how the savvy author these days is driving much of the publicity herself.

Another writer who hasn't sold her book but is still working on it is Nienke Hinton. She has a blog called The Writing Life, in which she describes her progress on a novel and the various problems that she encounters.

Well, it is certainly possible to maintain a blog and work on a novel at one and the same time, and it may prove to be beneficial in building up interest. But you certainly need a good deal of time and energy to do it and the blog may prove a distraction. I guess the only way to find out is to try it and see.

4 comments:

Brenda Coulter said...

I think for most of us published writers, the jury is still out on whether our blogs are measurably effective promotional tools. But you're correct that our blogs distract us from our "regular" writing. I happen to believe that's a plus. Blogging six days a week has improved my discipline and stretched my imagination. Based on those benefits alone, I'm ready to call my 10-month blogging experiment an unqualified success.

Hari said...

Hi. I'm a newbie and have taken the plunge and started my own blog. These words by you - I guess the only way to find out is to try it and see - inspired me. I wonder what it all be like...

Kate S. said...

I’ve found that blogging benefits my writing in a couple of ways. First, when I’m involved in a big, sprawling fiction project, producing concise bits of writing in the form of blog posts at intervals injects a bit more structure and discipline into my writing life. Although time-wise blogging is certainly a distraction, psychologically it serves the fiction writing in that the regular completion of shorter pieces makes the larger project seem somehow more achievable. Second, blogging helps me to read like a writer. When reading a good book, my natural inclination is to let myself get swept away by it and, when reading a book that’s not so good, simply to stop. Now that I’m blogging about many of the books that I read, I’m pausing to figure out exactly what it is that makes the good books good, and persevering long enough to figure out what it is that doesn’t work in the not so good books. Honing my critical faculties for blogging purposes carries over into the fiction-writing realm in that it simultaneously sharpens the editorial eye that I bring to the revision process.

kf gallagher said...

Blogging is great writing practice, and a break from working on your main project. As a teacher of expository writing, I know that the more you write, the better you get, period. This is also true for the published fiction writer who is pushing through a large project, as I am. My posts are little espresso shots for me: something that I try to make as strong as I can, savor while they're hot, because I know they'll keep me moving ahead.