Saturday, March 15, 2014

Writing 'the stupid'

'The Stupid' is something that probably has some fancy literary name, which I either don't know, or heard but forgot. But I like calling it 'The Stupid' because it really sums it all up rather nicely. Of course that doesn't tell you what it is, so I'll elaborate: 'The Stupid' is that thing in a book or story that you are reading that is blatantly, obviously, sometimes frustratingly, STUPID.

Sometimes it's done for 'all the right reasons' or even reasons that 'sounded good at the time', but you the reader know its stupid. Sometimes some of the characters know it's stupid and will point it out (and usually one of the stupider or more self-righteous - I know, there isn't much of a diff there - characters will do it anyways), and occasionally sometimes everyone knows it's stupid, but they do it anyway for moral reasons.

I hate writing 'the stupid' because I'm not stupid and I don't like writing characters that are stupid. But you have to admit that writing the stupid is necessary, because so much of human nature and politics embrace the stupid (especially these days). So I'm always impressed when I'm reading an author and he writes the stupid in a way that makes me want to scream, but you can't too much because you kind of understand why some people won't do certain things. I'm impressed more when the stupid, while bad, isn't as bad as it could have been (and the author leaves little teases to make you think he just might go 'The Stupid squared'). I'm even more impressed when 'The Stupid' is brought in rather boldly, and obviously, and they're all kind of stuck with dealing with the consequences.

Then when you think they're going to bring 'The Stupid' back at the end of the book and do it again, they learn their lesson and make 'the hard choice', which of course is always the easy choice because it means you get to live, and keep on living. Freehold, of the Freehold series by Michael Z. Williamson was definitely one of those books. I enjoyed a lot, and right now it's free on the kindle. I'd say pick it up if you haven't already.

Sunday, March 09, 2014

SFWA, Stupidity, and Writing

I don't know if anyone reading this is at all familiar with the current bruhaha going on with SFWA, but it has turned into such a group of worthless leftist shrews and political commissars that I honestly can not understand why anyone would join it. Nor why anyone would even want a Hugo anymore.

I myself used to want to be a member, I even applied once. But you see I can't join. Because even though I have sold more books than over half of the members of SFWA, and made more money at writing than probably more than that, I'm not allowed to join. Because I write ebooks and self-publish them. So SFWA is really more like SFWAFPPBMPH (Science Fiction Writers Association For People Published By Major Publishing Houses), which means maybe half of the people selling SF&F are members. But I guess this is to be expected from an organization whose last president was a plagerist (I'm sorry, but his rewrite of H.Beam Piper's Little Fuzzy was plagiarism, you may put lipstick on that pig all you want, but it is still a pig), and which runs people out because of having politically incorrect beliefs, and who ran Jonathan Ross off of the awards ceremony, because people who will never win an award for anything were upset because in their fevered imaginations they believed they were going to not only win, but that they would then be mocked by him when they did.  (sorry for the run on there, but I think you get the point).

And the vast majority of those complaining about all of this probably have less than one book in print, if even that.

And then there is the just pure stupid coming out of places like Tor, which if you are to criticize you are suddenly the worse person on earth. Check out Larry Correia, According to Hoyt, or the Mad Genius Club if you want to know more (and no I'm not giving links, use Google, I'm a lazy ass today). I had always thought that the purpose of SWFA was to support writers, help writers, and be like a trade union for writers - you know giving them access to things like health insurance plans and retirement plans, standing up to writers contract rights. I didn't know it was actually an old woman's garden club that spent all of it's time enforcing political beliefs and vilifying anyone who didn't toe the far left political line, as well as just a shill for the publishing houses (who have more control over SFWA than the writers do).

No wonder SciFi is going out of business, its biggest organization is trying to kill it!

As for me, well I'm still working on a new novel, the one I've been working on since the beginning of the year. I took a few weeks off to spin out a couple of cheap trashy romance novels because I need the money and women romance readers are rather generous with their money, so rather than insult them with politically correct diatribes and message stories I just give them what they want. And guess what? They appreciate the gesture enough to give me money.

I wonder if that's why the Romance industry is booming? Because it caters to the readers and not some 'gender neutral non-binary gender' bullshit? Gee, what a concept!

Still not sure what I'll write next after I finish this modern fantasy, part of me is thinking about writing another Romance novel, not just one of the little trashy fun pulp ones, because Romance readers are a more appreciative audience, and also because my sister just gave me a truly wicked idea about were-chihuahuas. I do worry that science fiction will get harder to write and sell because so many of the books winning Hugo's and being promoted as such are utter drek. The people who are writing the good stuff (like Larry C.) are almost creating their own category of literature because it's hard to look at what they write and then place it in the SF&F field, when so much of that field is going down hill. Hell I see more 'speculative fiction' in the Romance field these days than in all of SF&F, and that's just SAD.

But that's what happens when you let the perpetually offended rabid leftists who don't produce anything but shrillness into your organization. If I was a more motivated person I would start the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers Guild. It would not EVER say ANYTHING about what the writers wrote, it probably wouldn't even give out awards. But what it would do would be the things that a guild is supposed to do: Use the strength in numbers that the membership gives it to get better medical plans, retirement plans, and legal advice about contracts to the membership. You know, the kinds of things writers can use.

But hey, that's crazy talk, right?