Open thread

Posted: 6th August 2007 by onyxhawke in Uncategorized
Tags: , , ,

Two parts:


While i know several of you from elsewhere on the Web, I’m not familiar with all of you. If you’d like please introduce yourself and tell me why you read my LJ. Real names not required.


Anyone got a question for me? Some questions might not be answered, others might not be answered in a way you’d want…

  • Well, I stopped by because of Masochism Monday, which was much appreciated,thank you.
    I'm sure I have plenty of questions, but none are popping to mind just now.

    • Ah!!! Stalker!!
      You Carpe Libris chicks are _everywhere_!!!

      • Maybe we should change our motto from "Seize the Library, etc…" to "Seize the Internet!"

        • Why not "Seize the Keyboard" or "seize the pen" or in my case "seize the booze, books and caffeine"

          • "Seize the keyboard" would work. We threaten to whap each other with ours if we're not productive enough.
            Booze could easily kill me, so that's out, but pen and books, absolutely. And if the caffeine's in the form of chocolate, well, that's a recipie for instant inspiration.

  • OMike,
    where did this come from all the sudden? As to why I read…because I enjoy the occasionally twisted way your mind works.

    • As I've been known to point out here and there… I'm an information junkie, if they ever find a way to put it in an edible, injectable, or inhaleable form it better be non-toxic or i'll OD the first day.

      • If you OD can I have your tail and wing feathers? I'll need them for cowboy hat and fedoras I'll be buying eventually.

  • Hello there. I'm a reviewer/writer with a couple of short story publications under my belt, and I'm here because I love watching other professionals in the field, and seeing what they have to say and think. I came here because Masochism Monday intrigued me. And because someday, I might need an agent.
    Or bail money.

    • Bail money, sorry i spent that on vodka and maple sugar candy.
      As for the other… what do you write novel wise?

      • Currently, my strengths seem to be leaning towards urban fantasy. Someday, I hope to expand into science fiction, "regular" fantasy, or paranormal romance. Of course, that's in the future.

        • Heh, the first areas of expansion do interest me more than the third…
          But quality will out.

  • I followed you from either the LMB list or Baen's Bar – I think I found you first on the list, and later on the Bar. I tend to friend everyone on LJ that I know from other venues – either electronic or face-to-face – until I've discovered I'm not interested in reading what they have to say. So far, you're nowhere near that point!

    • I think it was the Bujold list, iirc you flisted me after I mentioned to Redlion this gig.

  • Not sure where I found you, but we have a few mutual friends.
    Me, I'll read anything.

    • Oh fascinating the one person to reply so far i don't recognize!

  • I was the grouchy chick on an Arisia panel. You gave me a water bottle and a pen! I still have the pen, but I think my kid has absconded with the water bottle.

    • Grouchy?
      Love, i hate to break it to ya but i'm less nice in a good mood most days.

  • Like Wolfie, I enjoy seeing the warped manner in which your brain operates in from time to time [G]. Seriously, I like seeing your point of view regarding the publishing industry.
    Besides, anyone who'd torture themselves with MM needs to be watched, for their own good [VBEG]

    • Heyla sexy, you coming to WFC this year too?

      • Ah, you silver-tongued devil [G].
        I'm not sure if I'll be there or not. It's possible, though. Sarah's really encouraging me to.

        • No love its still pink, but for you, i shall paint it. O:-)

          • You're too good to me, o feathered one. ;-p

            • HA!
              No such thing.
              You are of course polishing the _other_ things in your secret files for me right? You aren't too deep in the slush pile.

              • But, but, but…..oh, all right. I guess I'll have to find something else to work on instead of sitting here contemplating my navel [G]

                • HA!
                  HA! I say.
                  When he comes up for work again ask Ser Monkey what the first four months of me being his agent was like.

  • I think I followed you over from <lj user="sfandf_writers"> because you said something intelligent.
    I'm a writer–I just got back from this year's Clarion West. I'm also working on a PhD in statistics, and I own a farm.

    • I said something intelligent??
      And people think _I_ need to be watched.

      • I said something intelligent??
        It can happen once to almost anybody.

        • Well that's a relief.
          If i did it again people might expect it all the time, i must be careful about that.

  • I came here because <lj user ="sartorias"> mentioned MM in her LJ and I figured it would be worth participating in (and it was.) I'm staying because it's entertaining. And I also did pick up one of your nifty pens at last year's WFC, and it served me well during the workshop I just went to. All that critting to do.
    Questions–um. Can't think of any.

    • Oh, hi again.
      If i were actually coherent enough to put 1 + 1 together properly i'd probably have recognized you.

  • You looked at my novel Machiavelli Moon in your slush pile contest and I figure that an agent's lj is probably a handy thing to peek in on if I'd like to get in the game somme day.

    • Ah so thats who you are!
      I was curious as to which LJ was yours.
      For those wondering…
      I do mean what i say in critiques.

      • yes, the appropriately named one. Mostly just hanging out quietly watching and learning

  • I added you when you posted about Masochism Monday on a community somewhere. I'm hoping to get published someday, so I tend to add literary agents, editors, and published authors to my friends list so that I can learn stuff. I figure this way I don't have to like go to college to learn how to be a writer and stuff. 😉

    • The best advice i can give on getting published is:
      Write well.
      Edit/Revise to the best of your ability.
      Remember that luck plays a part.
      What do you write?

      • Thanks!
        I primarily write light, humorous sci-fi adventure, although I have an interest in fantasy and urban fantasy. Recently I've started to wonder if I should focus on young adult or children's fiction.

        • Just an FYI… i think most editors i've talked to are allergic to comic/humorous SF/F.
          No this doesn't make sense to me, but there it is…
          And there's no saying you can't write across age groups. Of course for me… someone has to have something of Adult SF/F first before i take them as a client…

          • Out of curiosity, what would you say most editors are enthusiastic about these days?
            Ooh, here's something else I've been wondering. When looking at new writers, does it help if they've previously published short stories in magazines or anthologies? Or does that not really make much of a difference when you consider taking them on?

            • For me, no. Writing shorter works, and writing novels are two different disciplines. Both involve similar tools but are as different as sketch comedy and feature length films. For a perfect example of this watch an episode or three of "In Living Color" and then (if you can) watch "Marci X". What works in the short version, doesn't always carry over.
              A print example of this is Lynn Abbey's "Turning Points" and her previous shorts in the world of "Sanctuary", having a character use a made up swear every three paragraphs is tolerable for about five thousand words. After this it interferes with what is otherwise a more than passable story.
              Saleswise, having a few sales to point the editor at so they see someone other than I thinks you have talent doesn't hurt.
              Most editors get rather cryptic about what they actually want. A certain gent at a large publishing house said "We want writers who sell better than the ones we have." Given the selection of stuff they publish, i took that to mean better written of just about anything we already sell. Others will say "We aren't looking for…" and then change the subject. And each publishing house (and the larger ones the editors in them) have their own tastes even within various sub-genre. For example there's a well known tale of a moderately successful writer at one house having been rejected by an influential editor at that house, that writer went on to pass their work directly to a different person with influence at that house and has now been happily selling for nigh on a decade.

  • I forget where I spotted you but I'm sure it was someplace important, where you said something that caught my interest, which tends to be enough to get you on my reading list these days.
    I am a minion in the throngs of writer-hopefuls and hope to glean intelligence on what not to do and what to do when I feel it is time to break free from the zombie horde and create my own army.
    I don't suppose it's a faux pas if I start a letter to an agent with, "Dude!"?

    • I suppose it would be better than sending me something that started with "Dudette".
      So did you send me something for MM or are you polishing something for the regular pile?

      • What I had at the time of MM needed more than "just" polishing (and it wasn't done, in any case), so I elected not to send anything at all. If you have another round at some point, then, yes, I will try for that.
        Otherwise, I'll just add to your regular pile.

        • Either way one gets my full attention when their book is in front of me.

          • Getting the book on the desk is 98% of the struggle, by my reckoning. The other 2% involves nail-biting.
            Rest assured if my latest fits what you normally represent, I shall chuck it your way.

            • As it generally pertains to this biz… you are an optimist…

              • A buddy of mine didn't tell me to change the name for my journal to "Patron Saint of Pessimism" for nothing. Between reading several author journals and from experience, I know it can be tough to get published in any genre, in any format, and in any length. My stack of rejection letters, past and present, attest to that.
                But, dude, I've got to get these stories out of my head somehow. They're interfering with my work.

  • I came through the back door in the Bar, and stick around because I like reading your flights of creative misanthropy, critique, and even the occasional *gasp* intelligent comment.

    • Misanthropy…
      Stop using them there polysalabics!! The leave my corpus callosum and cerebellum experiencing astringent discomfort.

  • *waves*
    I can't remember how I found you, but I flisted your LJ while you were doing the Masochism Monday thing 🙂
    I love to read the blogs of folks in the literary industry because not only do the inner workings of the industry fascinate me (and I have this need to overload on information to boot) but I'm also prepping my own MS to query in the near future and I think the best way to avoid being a walking exasperation is to learn from the folks who have a better idea of what they're talking about than me LOL
    The shorter version though is – I saw your blog, liked your style and clicked the 'add friend' button 😀

    • Welcome!
      An important thing most people don't realize or don't know about learning to write well is that reading bad writing is just as important as reading good stuff for developing a perspective on what doesn't work and why.
      First drinks on the house, the ladders in the garage…

      • This is a very true thing indeed! Sometimes one must first sing out of tune before they can find the harmony.
        Wonderful! Need anything while I'm up there? XD

        • Well, if you find any good sense laying around please pass it over…

  • I was drawn here by the ineluctable shmeck of danger. Also Masochism Monday, possibly a more straightforward way of saying the same thing.

    • Ah yes, another of the things in the Slush pile I'm looking forward to.

      • Glad to hear it! I fixed everything so it's like, you know, perfect now.

        • Goody… In theory, everything that i know is in the slush pile could be done by the second week of September if I'm obscenely lucky, if I'm not the first week of October.

  • I know you from the Bar, found your posts there interesting, and have read your blogs for a while now (definitely longer than I have a LJ of my own).

    • I wish i had time to keep up the politics blog too. Alas… there are somethings more demanding, and less frustrating.
      You hopping back across the pond anytime soon?

      • I don't know right now if/when I'll come to N-America for a visit. Currently I'm looking for a job in tourism – tour guiding maybe – I'd prefer something along the lines of nature tours, expeditions. This way I could combine my biology degree with my love to travel 🙂 Not too easy to find something though…

        • Oh, we have _tons_ of national parks, there are theme parks like Sea World and various Zoo's that need good people, large Aquariums…
          For a visit there's always WorldCon Denver where there may just be a large congregation of Bar Fly's, and more importantly _me_. 😛

          • Yeah, but first I would need a work permit or a green card – not so easy! Anyway, for the next 6-7 weeks I have a fun though very low-paid job: working at an paleontological excavation. It's really great as long as the weather plays along 🙂
            As for visiting – a European/German trip would be nice for you as well 😉

  • Who, me? Just following my it-chose-me vocation 😉

    • Saving the world from itself?

      • Nothing so lofty. Just being a release valve for some of the stress in the world.

        • See Above.
          :: hugs ::

          • ::HUGS::
            Silly bird.

            • :: sigh ::
              Just cause you have nine lives doesn't mean you need to spend them all taking care of the rest of us.

              • If I don't, who's gonna? You've got a record of not taking care of yourself, as do several of the others who are important to me.

                • Saving me from myself would require a medium sized army, and my cooperation…

                  • I'm about the same size as an average medium (but far less likely to speak for dead grandmothers.)

                    • No grandmothers? I suppose you're better off not talking to mine anywho, they start off at really weird and progress past bug f*ck nuts.

  • Like a couple others below, I found your LJ because <lj user="sartorias"> mentioned Masochism Monday and I sent a little something in. I'm hanging around reading because I'm hoping for new insights into publishing and because I enjoy your voice.
    At this point, I read my flist mostly for the latter, though.
    As for questions: read any good sf/f/m lately?

    • Sadly i haven't read much of anything lately. I read HP7 which was really the best of the series, and the latest Bujold that was not in my top ten faves of hers.
      Dave Freer's "A Mankind Witch" is on the shelves in paperback, and his collaboration with Eric Flint "Pyramid Power" is out in hardcover. I think i read both of them at least two years ago.

  • I'm Don, and I have a few LJs of a literary bent that I read. Your LJ has some good suggestions/thoughts, and so I read.

    • Heyla, welcome.
      Whatcha reading this week?

      • Howdy, howdy.
        At the moment, nothing. Writing, actually. This past weekend, however, I read Sherwood Smith's The Fox, the second in her Inda series. We've been LJ friends for a year or so, and she was up in the Bay Area for Mythcon this weekend, so I met her, bought it, and read. =-)
        What about you? Any reading for fun?

        • I read the latest C.E. Murphy "Coyote Dreams" last night. Although since I'm interviewing her in two days I'm not sure it counts as 'fun' since I hadn't intended to buy and read it for a couple weeks, but it was great.

          • Hmmmmmm. I think that, if you intended to read it in spite of the interview, it can count as Fun. And just because something is work related, doesn't mean it can't be fun (unless, of course, one works in Silicon Valley, as I do).
            Now PiCon, that sounded like fun.

  • Anonymous

    I found this after finding a vague entry at P&E; it seems quite hard to find SF agents who actually take it instead of just say they do.
    It took some doing to find this blog though, since on the agency website, it doesn't actually give Mike's name…
    Anyway, I do have a small question. What does one do if they sent the wrong version of their work? The one I sent has a few stupid typos and plot holes and I've since chosen a less stupid title.
    Though it probably doesn't matter a whole lot, I imagine. It'll get bounced either way, I think.

    • Re: shoop
      Resend it. At the START of the subject line insert: replacement for Sub on date and then the rest of the subject line as the guidelines state.

    • Re: shoop
      Um, dropping my name into google as "Michael Kabongo" the first result is my website, the third is this LJ.
      Dropping in "Mike Kabongo" gives the same first result with the LJ dropping down to 13.
      On Yahoo Mike Kabongo has a #1 result of the LJ, my upcoming appearance at at #15 and my website at 16
      "onyxhawke" as the search term in Yahoo bring you the LJ at 1 and the website at 2, Google reverses those.

  • I am retterson. Retired biotech industry exec, now ambivalent author of speculative fiction. Attended Viable Paradise X is my sole credential thusfar (for lack of trying, I think; I hope).
    Friended you when you ran your Will Read Three event. Based on what I've read, you won't like the stuff I write. That's neither good nor bad; it just is.
    I lurk here and elsewhere because wisdom and truth come from many places.

    • Hmmm. I'm a salesmen, my two biggest criteria are A) do I think it will sell [to a publisher] and B] Do I know the right people to send it to to sell it.
      There are somethings I just don't like, but do understand their commercial viability.
      Anywho, Welcome.