Blogger has been completely insane for most of today, refusing to post stuff at all until 8 pm UK time, and then posting about eight copies of Excerpt 16 -- which, enthusiastic for it though you no doubt are, is a bit excessive. However, at last, here are a few things which should not be overlooked.
Link for Kelly Link
Kelly Link is an extremely talented science-fiction/fantasy writer who has won many awards in that field, such as the Nebula, Tiptree, and World Fantasy Awards. Eleven of her stories were included in Kelly's first collection, a book called Stranger Things Happen (which Mrs GOB is buying me for my birthday). And now, folks, you can, if you wish read this stuff online; in more than one format.
There are other books of Kelly's available too. And thanks to Viktor Janis for pointing this out.
Agents to avoid
I assume that anyone smart enough to be reading this blog is smart enough to know that there are agents and agents, and that some of them are to be avoided. But, just in case you need reminding, take note of Writer Beware's list of the 20 worst agents around. (Link from Maud Newton.)
Madness in the UK
The Sunday Telegraph reports that 85 UK universities now offer postgraduate creative-writing courses. Writing is reported to have a 'glamorous new image'. Hmm.
The link to this story came from the Literary Saloon, which asks, in passing, what could be more depressing. Offhand, I can't think of anything. Not in the book world, anyway.
Weird, bizarre and unusual
Weird, Bizarre and Unusual, aka chewednews.com, is the name of a web site operated by Andrew J. Hewett. I'm not quite sure where this one 1s going to or coming from but I sense that there may be a book in it somewhere, somewhen.
Back in February I reported on the case of Kaavya Viswanathan, a very bright young woman who was reported to be working with a book packager and an agent to produce a commercially viable product. I was generally in favour of the idea, though commenter Jeremy Snippet wasn't.
Well, the book came out, and was the predicted success -- 32nd on the New York Times hardcover fiction bestseller list this week. However, the Harvard Crimson has just published an article alleging that several passages in the Viswanathan book are very similar to passages in another novel published in 2001. Oops.
So far it's no comment from everyone on the Viswanathan side. Thanks to Landjimk for the tip-off.
Gerard Jones on the wireless thingy
Gerard Jones, author of the world-famous Ginny Good, is interviewed by Denis Johnson on MobyLives radio. Go to MobyLives and click on the MobyLives Radio logo for 22 April 2006, and with a bit of luck an MP3 player will open up automatically and (provided you have your speakers turned on) start to play.
Gerard tells me that in this interview he sounds giddy and senile, but then, he says, 'I am giddy and senile.' Nah. No such thing. Actually he does very well and has some valuable insights to offer. It's a bit of a fag getting the MP3 thing to operate, but well worth it. Gerard is a one-off and an inspiration to us all.