Friday, August 28, 2015

The Good, The Bad, and The Negative

© by Gerald So | | 4:00 A.M.

This week the 7 Criminal Minds bloggers discussed how they deal with bad reviews.

My feeling is, when I submit my work for publication, I voluntarily open it up to everyone who can read. And of course, not everyone is going to like it.

If I were writing just for my satisfaction, I'd write stuff, read it, smile, and put it in a drawer. I write for publication because I want to give others the enjoyment I get from reading. I'll never hear from everyone who enjoys my work, but it's enough to hear from a few. The enjoyment I try to give, the connection I try to make, is personal after all.

And let me distinguish bad reviews from negative reviews. Bad reviews fail to address my work, as bad light bulbs fail to light. Bad reviews are easily spotted and dismissed upon reading, but they unfairly and unfortunately count in a glance at numbers.

Negative reviews, on the other hand, are fair. They genuinely address my work and find it lacking.

Not everyone is going to like what I write. That doesn't stop me from writing.

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Writers' Responsibility

© by Gerald So | | 3:00 P.M.

In the aftermath of another incident of gun violence, Steve Weddle pondered whether fiction writers have a responsibility in their depictions of violence.

I commented that fiction, even at its most realistic, is to be understood as separate from reality. I've heard it argued that violent fiction, movies, video games, etc. perpetuate violence. It can also be argued that imagined violence is cathartic and prevents real violence.

Though writers mostly write by themselves, they don't write in a vacuum. They write from the influence of other writers and add to genres of reading that will outlive them. That's where their first responsibility is.

Other responsibilities go beyond being writers. I hope that no matter how many humans want to kill, there are at least that many who value the lives of others as they do their own.

Monday, August 24, 2015

At The Five-Two: "A Fall into Grace"

© by Gerald So | | 12:01 A.M.

Elizabeth Lash returns with a poem showing that with true crime, as opposed to fiction, we often don't get "the whole story":

Friday, August 21, 2015

3 Minutes From Live

© by Gerald So | | 9:00 A.M.

As a member of the Short Mystery Fiction Society, I recently pitched the idea of live readings of mystery & crime short fiction, Short Mystery Fiction Socials, hosted by local members, along the lines of the popular Noirs at the Bar.

Wondering who and what establishments might be open to such events, I realized I could also host readings virtually. 3 Minutes From Live is one more venue for writers and their work.

Monday, August 17, 2015

At The Five-Two: "Mortal Terror" by Sarah Stockton

© by Gerald So | | 12:30 A.M.

Voice of The Five-Two Sarah Stockton returns with a poem inspired by the controversial use of lethal injections to carry out the death penalty:

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Sunday, August 16, 2015

My Ace Atkins Interview in Crimespree #60

© by Gerald So | | 3:30 A.M.

In April, Crimespree Magazine's Jon Jordan asked me to interview Ace Atkins about his fourth Spenser novel, Robert B. Parker's Kickback. The interview ran on the Crimespree site in May, but there's nothing like being in print. Pick up the July/August Sean Chercovered issue.

Saturday, August 15, 2015

Thank you, Steve Kowit

© by Gerald So | | 7:00 A.M.

I looked in on last night and was saddened to learn poet and teacher Steve Kowit had died, in his sleep on April 2, 2015, according to his website.

A few years out of graduate school, Kowit's In the Palm of Your Hand: The Poet's Portable Worshop showed me how to revise a flash of inspiration into a poem more people than just I might get, and how to conjure inspiration for a poem in the first place.

I never met or corresponded with Kowit, but his friendly voice comes through in his work and his website. Long may they draw audiences.