Friday, February 7, 2014

Observations— Keeping Up With the Business of Writing Crime Fiction

I’m  blessed and cursed.  I’ll save the “cursed” part for some other time.  Meanwhile, here’s the blessing: I am, for the most part able to devote as much time as I want on my books and this blog.  When I say “on books,” I don’t mean just writing and editing.  I have to keep up with the business of books. Most writers have their own routines to accomplish this.

I read a few pertinent magazines: Mystery Scene (a particularly good, broad view of what’s going on in the genre, The Strand, Crimespree, and George Easter’s Deadly Pleasures, the best and most comprehensive source for crime fiction reviews.  When I can, I attend Mystery Writer’s Of America’s annual conference, Bouchercon, held in various cities and Magna Cum Murder, held annually in Indianapolis. Both are highly recommended.

The daily routine is done completely on online. *8:30 a.m. Coffee, e-mail, a Facebook quick check.  Next, J. Kingston Pierce’s rap sheet. I don’t know what I’d do without it. Whatever is happening in the word of crime fiction is usually posted here first. Next Stop: Bill Crider’s Popular Culture — information and lots of humor from the highly respected, and popular crime fiction author. Next is Ed Gorman‘s blog. Among those engaged in crime fiction, I consider Gorman an Elder, not because of age­— we are roughly the same vintage — but because of his mammoth, and continuing contribution to the genre. He has first-hand knowledge of crime fiction’s history.  He has a level of experience in the trenches few (certainly not me) can match. His blog is part of my on-going adult education. Next stop:  Mysterious Matters.  We don’t know the identity of the blogger except that he or she is an acquisitions editor or publisher who gives us insight into the machinations of those who might or might not publish our books. I also regularly check in with Kevin Burton Smith’s essential The Thrilling Detective.  And I rarely miss Tipping My Fedora for its more than worthwhile erudite commentary. Finally, though he does not post often enough for me, I look to get the booksellers’ point of view from seller, conference organizer and publisher Jim Huang.

Thank you, all.

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