Monday Musings: And Another Thing

The Gods We Pray To?

Writers tend to invoke a variety of deities, and not just “the one, all seeing, almighty” during the course of a writing day.

We pray for Wisdom, to know what to write that will get agents and publishers excited.

We pray not to be made a fool of or make a fool of ourselves when pitching an idea to our agent or publisher… or that our editor doesn’t misinterpret something so badly that the meaning of something in our manuscript becomes perverted or so lost that it is no longer relevant to the story. 

We pray to the deity in charge of Swollen Ankles and other sore anatomical features for relief after a long day of climbing and descending staircases, searching through mouldy, dust-filled boxes in even mouldier, dust-filled basements and archive rooms, looking for research material for the current WiP  or the one we’re planning to do next.

… And of course we pray to any deity that will listen to make it 5 p.m. already so that we can go have drink or three.

Writing is Ten percent Inspiration and 90 percent Perspiration

Some people think that writers/authors finds all of their ideas and inspiration where we live, where we work, and from what we read, see and hear; that unless we are brain-dead, intoxicated or traumatised beyond coherent thought, anyone who is a writer would find it impossible not to fill a blank page.

Another public perception of the writer/author is that we are all either drunks, drug addicts, sybarites or highly disturbed people who should be kept away from the public save for book tours and signings.

The truth is, save for a signing where the author is standing next to a mug-shot and a stack of their books, most people couldn’t pick an author out of a crowd… unless it happens to be a crowd of authors in a bar during a book convention.   

While some of us are paid to do what we love, most writers/authors work for a living. We’re teachers, librarians, business executives, doctors, bartenders, janitors, etc… 

Some of us are even stay at home parents who are busy raising a family, cleaning, shopping and cooking for our spouse and/or off-spring.

Despite the music blaring from behind the sound-proof door that was installed for the teenagers room, the repetitious noise from the game console in the family room that make one want to take a shot-gun to it, and the incessant ringing of the telephone… despite having it changed to yet another unlisted number yesterday, we still manage to find time to write.

Even if we have to do it in the garage at 3am.

Book Reviews That Do Not Amuse

Not everything an author writes is going to be well accepted… much less beloved by everyone who reads a particular book.

And authors, especially prolific ones who publish several books each year… each of which is part of a different series, will inevitably write the occasional ‘clinker.’ 

Still…  there is nothing more frustrating for a writer to read than reviews that aren’t  [reviews]  but instead a gush of passive/aggressive wishy-washy nonsense about how much the reader likes the authors body of work as a whole and therefore is supportive of the book…


The reviewer then goes on to whine and kvetch about all the things they didn’t like. 

By the end of these kind of reviews I’m left wondering why the reader bothered to read the book, much less write about it. 

And so…

I would like to pass on a piece of wisdom. It’s called The First rule of reviewing, which states… 

If you have nothing good to say, nothing constructive to add, then say nothing.


… And Thank You! 


About Gwendolyn McIntyre

Author, editor, businesswoman, musician, lover of jazz and horses. Chief investigator of all things that go BUMP in the night.
This entry was posted in Blogging, Books, Paying Attention, Publishing, Random Acts of Kindness, Reading, Things you might have learned had you been paying attention, Thinking, Writing and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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