Monday’s Top 5

Jami Gold had an interesting post this week titled How Do You React When Strangers Read Your Work? that got me thinking about that very question. (My answer is that I love strangers reading my work, but get nervous about my parents reading anything I’ve written that hints at anything risqué or includes swearing. What’s yours?)

Agent Rachelle Gardner answers the question What is a High Concept Novel?

Kristen Lamb asks the question Are We Born to be Creative? in relation to the creative arts (not just writing). I found this quite interesting, and it made me think about my own family, and the innate (and often suppressed) creativity of many of my relatives.

There’s a great vignette of suburban life on Oh My Words! entitled Eavesdropping as Entertainment and Kids these Days. It’s funny because it’s true.

Last but not least, the always-entertaining Tamara Paulin says, “Oh NARF, I just insulted the internet.”


Filed under Top 5

8 responses to “Monday’s Top 5

  1. Oh my–thanks for the shout out! I am honored to be included in your Top 5!

  2. I like it when people read my stuff in general, but I don’t talk about it at work. I don’t want people to feel obligated to check it out, and there are some things in there that some folks might find offensive. Violence, sex, loud music, lots of gay people, a lack of reverence for a lot of things that some people are very reverant about. Better not to spread that around at the office.

    Everybody else should read it, though. And my mother is fine with swearing and so on.

  3. I love your top 5’s. I can’t wait to read these, especially the eavesdropping one!

  4. I feel a rolling in my stomach when I’m getting feedback from strangers. I’ve gotten some good reviews lately on earlier work, and it makes me cry. That’s right — good reviews make me cry. It’s upsetting to realize how much I care, and to know that the sword cuts both ways.

    “High concept” is the football that Lucy keeps snatching away from Charlie Brown. They can’t really say what it is, only what it isn’t. However, if I were an agent, I’d also be aching for the elusive “high concept”, that rare and mythical stripey songbird, with the head of a gazelle, that poops out movie-franchise money.

    • For me, it depends on who the feedback is from as to whether I care enough to get upset either way. For real and actual strangers (ie. people I don’t know at all), I feel incredibly touched and proud if they like what I’ve written, but I don’t feel upset if they don’t. For people I know personally, I get that rollercoaster-stomach feeling when I wait to hear what they say, but I find that I feel frustrated if they only tell me good things. If someone I know and trust is reading my work, I trust them to tell me which bits of it suck. (And, let’s be honest, there’s always something about it that could be better.)

      • Good or bad, the hardest part is the waiting. 90% of my beta readers have had my book for 5 weeks and I still haven’t heard a peep. I guess I should email them all to confirm my assumption that it must therefore be perfect! 🙂

    • Tamara, you should give those beta readers a stern speech about their awesome responsibility and the earth-shattering consequences if they shirk. Then tell them that they’ll get a nice treat when they finish (if they give good feedback, of course).

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