Tag Archives: Guest post

To E-Read or Not to E-Read: My Guest Post on J.C. Martin’s Blog

Good morning fellow bookies!

Yesterday, I had the extreme pleasure of sharing a wonderfully insightful and entertaining post about writing styles and kung fu fighting by J.C. Martin, fighter and writer extraordinaire!

It was J.C.’s first guest post ever and it was fantabulously good! Yes, I said fantabulously!

Check the post here if you missed it!

Today, J.C. was kind enough to feature a post I wrote for her and her blog about e-readers vs. printed books.

Please check it out below and let me know what you think:

To E-Read or Not to E-Read: Is That the Question?

Also, wordpress ate all of J.C.’s Google Friend Connect followers, so please follow (or re-follow) her here! Do the right thing!

*So, are you an e-reader all the way or a staunch lover of all things print? *



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Guest Post: J.C. Martin’s “Everybody’s Kung Fu Writing…”

J.C. Martin, Fighter Writer

This week’s guest poster, J.C. Martin, needs little to no introduction at all. She’s a rabid writer, bookworm, kung fu fighter, teacher, gourmand, dog owner, and fabulous blogger!

Very quickly, I will say that she’s hosting a wonderful contest on her blog called, Race to 200 Blog Contest!

*To sign up, go here and enter your information in the linky at the bottom of the page!*

Be sure to visit J.C.’s blog, J.C. Martin, Fighter, Writer, friend her on Facebook and follow her on Twitter!

And now, with no further ado, here is J.C.’s awesome guest post!

Everybody’s Kung Fu Writing…

In the words of Po the Panda:

Having said that, I love writing just as much, if not more. 🙂 Given the choice between becoming a martial arts master or a published author, I’m choosing to pursue the latter (although my sifu is still trying to change my mind!).

When Genna invited me to write a guest post for her blog, she suggested something that combines my two passions. In many ways, trying to get your novel published requires the same amount of commitment to your craft as a martial artist pursuing his or her black belt: the discipline to practice, practice, practice, every day; the desire to constantly improve and to hone your skills; perseverance in the face of adversity (or when faced with a pile of rejection letters); and, above all else, a burning passion for your art.

But the similarities don’t end there. Just as there are hundreds of different martial art forms around the world, there is a wide variety of writing styles: from the simple to the extravagant, from the succinct to the wordy, we are all masters in some style of wordplay—we may just not know it yet. 😉

So, read on and find out what your butt-kicking alter ego is!

The Capoeirista

The most common martial artist among writers of literary fiction, your prose is as elaborate and energetic as the break dance-like Brazilian martial art itself. You favour style over substance, choosing to expend the majority of your muse’s energy on weaving and spinning words together into an intricate literary dance. You dazzle your readers with spellbinding displays of word acrobatics bursting with raw emotion, but be careful not to confuse them so much that they lose the plotline!

The Escrima Exponent

OK, so this is not so much a writing style but a writing habit. Like the weapons-based martial art, you rely heavily on tools when you write. Be it your laptop, networked to your desktop, and synced to your Blackberry, or your multiple back-up drives, writing/editing software, ergonomic keyboard, portable Dictaphone, digital dictionary/thesaurus…you are a super-productive writing whiz with your technological arsenal, but be careful not to become overly reliant on them.

The Ninja

Stealth is your middle name. You skulk in the shadows, scribing away in efficient silence. A night owl and lone wolf all in one, you work best alone, under cover of darkness. Like a silent assassin, your plot twists strike suddenly, overwhelming your unsuspecting readers in a flash. Your self-imposed solitude makes the road to publication a lonely one, and when trouble strikes, you’re on your own. For the sake of your sanity, seek support from fellow kung fu writers and beta readers on this long and treacherous journey.

The Sumo Wrestler

Size matters to you, be it the length of your epic manuscript, or the big words you wield with your pen. Your main strategy is shock and awe. Your writing is brutal and powerful, hitting readers with the force of a freight train. When printed out, your telephone directory-thick manuscript can pack quite a wallop, too. From antidisestablishmentarianism to zymogenesis, you are a walking dictionary, and no doubt a super-heavyweight champion when it comes to spelling bees. Nevertheless, be careful not to appear supercilious and overly loquacious, especially to those with hippopotomonstrosesquippedaliophobia. When you are editing, look out for redundant words that do not contribute to the story/sentence. And that 200,000 word manuscript? It may need to go on a wee diet…

The Wing Chun Master

Bruce Lee is arguably the most famous student of Wing Chun. His oft-quoted phrase, “Be like water”, reflects your style of writing perfectly: your prose is simple, yet fluid, capable of being soft and gentle one minute, and explosive and devastating the next. You follow a set of principles that are basic but effective. You don’t waste too much time and energy on flowery descriptions or fancy displays of prose. You are direct, succinct; each word written is aimed at maximum emotional impact. Just be mindful your WiP doesn’t end up reading like an Ikea furniture assembly manual.

Martial arts wise, I have a black belt in Wing Chun. As a writer, I’m probably a Wing Chun Master with a dash of Ninja thrown in. 🙂

What about you? What is your kung fu writing style?


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Guest Post: Craig Lancaster’s “Just Give Me A Good Story”

Today, for the first time ever, we have a guest poster!

I was lucky enough to convince Craig Lancaster, talented author and writer, to share his thoughts on blending literary and genre standards, the difference between literary fiction and genre fiction, and “crap” sections at bookstores!

I am *very* excited to have Craig here and am so grateful to him for taking time out of his busy schedule to write a guest post for Reading, Writing, and the World of Words!

Craig Lancaster’s first novel, 600 Hours of Edward, was a 2009 Montana Honor Book and the 2010 High Plains Book Award winner for best first book.

His second novel, The Summer Son, was released in January by AmazonEncore. Find out more about Craig and his work here.

And now, with no further ado, here is Craig’s wonderful guest post! Enjoy:

Just Give Me A Good Story

Standing in front of an entry-level creative-writing class recently, I struggled to explain the difference between literary fiction and genre fiction. It’s one of those distinctions that seem clear within the confines of one’s own cranium but come out in spits and sputters when put to words. (I’m similarly challenged any time I have to explain my love of Neil Diamond’s music, but that’s a confession for another essay.)

I stumbled around a bit before offering a woefully substandard rule of thumb: Literary fiction, I said, generally concerns itself with matters of character, while genre fiction tends to be driven by plot. In the absence of a dissertation-length explanation, that simple delineation holds up, but if you dig even a little bit below the surface, it comes up lacking.

These students wanted to dig.

“I read Stephen King,” one said. “He writes good characters.”

Well, yeah, that’s true, I acknowledged.

Someone else cited an undeniably literary novel – as God is my witness, I can’t remember now which one – and pointed out its plot elements. Again, I conceded the point.

The exchange put me in a mind of a discussion I regularly have with my book-loving friends, about how the stories many of us remember and love the most deftly blend literary and genre standards, giving us characters we love (or loathe) and can relate to and a story that keeps us eagerly turning the page. Many authors who are classified as either genre or literary manage to do this, and we’re all richer for their skill.

And yet, we’ve all read genre works that are masteries of craft and utterly devoid of art, or literary works that plod through 100,000 florid words without actually getting anywhere. I have a hard time imagining being satisfied with either.

My good friend Richard S. Wheeler, the great Western author, wrote the following in his autobiography, An Accidental Novelist. I think it should be required reading for anyone who loves books:

“There is no reason why a popular novel with a dramatic storyline cannot also be a novel that probes the human condition. There is no reason why a literary novel that delves deep into relationships or character cannot also have a storyline that hustles along and compels attention. These false distinctions should be thrown out.”

(This is where you, the book lover, should stand and applaud.)

Pulitzer Prize winner Michael Chabon, whose literary bonafides need no validation, sounded a similar theme in an interview with IO9 back in 2009:

“Personally I would prefer to see bookstores shelve all fiction together regardless of genre. Or maybe just have two sections, ‘Good Stuff’ and ‘Crap.’ Into Crap we will consign all novels regardless of genre or reputation that trade in cliche and dead language. If I ever own a bookstore I will do it that way. Only I will just leave out the Crap section.”

When Chabon opens that store, he’ll get all my business.

I want to thank Craig for being here today with us! Don’t forget to check out his website (here) and please comment to let him know your thoughts on his post!

What are the differences (as you see them) between literary fiction and genre fiction?

*Photo credit of Craig: Ashley Stevick*


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Guest Post on BaffledBooks: If Reading Books Paid the Bills

I am *thrilled* to say that I wrote a guest post for Lisa of BaffledBooks today called “If Reading Books Paid the Bills.”

And guess what? The post is on WordPress.com’s Freshly Pressed! How amazing is that!?

*Make sure to go over to Lisa’s blog and check out her other fantastic posts!*

Thanks to everyone for all of your support and feedback and I hope that you have an amazing day!

Guest Post: If Reading Books Paid the Bills Today, continuing on with the amazing guest posts and reviews here at BaffledBooks I am pleased to introduce Genna from Reading, Writing and the World of Words. Genna is a newish blogger and I love her enthusiasm about everything. Over at her blog she writes about random bookish things in an honest, open and excellent way. She offered to do a guest post when I put out a call for bloggers and here is what she came up with… If Reading Books Paid … Read More

via BaffledBooks


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