As a follow on to yesterday's post I've got a couple books to recommend. I may have mentioned some of these before, some are pretty basic, some are a bit further afield.

The Encyclopedia of Eastern Mythology. ISBN0754800695
Great guide to the deities, legends, and more of the eastern world. The cover price was $40 when i bought it and i consider that a pretty low price for its quality. It has a good number of illustrations, and parses gods, demons and heroes.It tells you what areas a deity was worshiped in and lists relationships where appropriate.

The Icon and the Axe James H Billington. It's a huge, thick Russian history book that goes from the formative period to the fall of communism. It's not the most readable history text ever, but far from the worst. If you can' get a decent grasp of Russian history reading this there's not much anyone can do for you.

Adolescence. Laurence Steinberg.This is a psychology text that covers a lot of the theory, practice and research on adolescent psychology. It leans slightly towards behavioral theory but has strong biological credentials. I've got the seventh edition, i doubt for most writers there will be much difference between it and the sixth both are probably available on Ebay/Half or elsewhere.

DSM-IV-TR. This is the encyclopedia of mental health used across disciplines. the DSM 5 is expected out soon (and has been for three years) and this should be enough to make any mental health writing solid.

Family Names and their story. S. Baring-Gould. It covers the family names of a lot of the northern European area. It has some interesting anecdotes and goes into nicknames as well.

Africana. Appiah & Gates. ISBN 046500711 It covers pretty much everything with a heavy African influence that has happened since the African diaspora. It's huge and expensive. The version i got is i believe out of print, and i doubt anyone will want to part with theirs. The one i have is the original version is oversized and more than 2000 pages. It has ethnic groups, various African cities, celebrities. The list goes on and on. There are a couple other versions available.

The Good War. Studs Terkel. This is a collection of oral histories from people who lived through WW2. It has soldiers from more than one nation, nurses, people detained in the "Japanese" prisoner camps in the US. It's fascinating.

Two Years Before the Mast. Richard Henry Dana Jr. Good information about what was going on and what the world was like during Dana's time. Not really a thrilling read except for the information.

Got any you'd like to share?

[ profile] chipaatsua asked several questions that I'll attempt to answer.

First was: 1. what goes into making the decision on whether to offer representation,
First I have to like, really, like a book. Then i have to know where it's going to go first and what I'm going to emphasize in the cover letter to those first editors. Those two go hand in hand. After these, I have to be convinced that the writer will not be a pain in the ass to work with. Yes, that is in bold, in red, and underlined. This point, at least to me, is coequal with quality of writing. If i wanted to deal with crazy people all day long and have them suck the soul out of me I'd buy a big house and track down the people i went to high school with and move them all in.

2) how do you go about offering your authors' work to editors (how do you pick which editor the material goes to first, etc.),

This is actually easier. Than part 1. The type of story and the way the description is executed, the plot, and of course the politics (if any) of the story will make 95% of the choice of where it goes.

3. the average length of time between offering representation and selling the material, and lastly,

Dog only knows. And that's about the same answer any agent is going to give. I've seen agents post to their blogs that it took four years to sell something. I've sold something in four months.

4. when/how do you decide that the material isn't going to sell in its present form.
Admittedly I've only had the business a while, but I haven't run across anything I've decided not to pursue further yet. I have told a client or two that it would not be in their best interest for me to shop a project other than the one that got me to sign them, but that's different.
onyxhawke: (cookie)
( Sep. 12th, 2008 12:29 pm)
In answer to [ profile] laurahcory1 's question a couple posts back about what a typical day is like, I really don't have those. I try and dedicate two or three days at a time to reading slush, and use other days to catch up with clients and editors. Some days I simply hit industry news sources. Yesterday was unusually email heavy as i discovered that the contact form on my website had stopped forwarding to my blackberry. Since I don't get a huge volume of mail from it, it took a while to notice. So yesterday I fired off a lot more non client/editor email than is typical.
onyxhawke: (Default)
( Jul. 19th, 2008 12:31 am)
I'm continually bemused by the amount of people who friend me and actually stick around. I see comments from people who I don't know, and who haven't commented before or in a long time and it kicks the curiosity up another notch.

So why are you here? Almost everyone has been here a month or more, and I'm kinda curious as to how you got here and what you find among my blitherings interesting enough to keep you waylaying electrons to bring you my mutterings.

onyxhawke: (Default)
( May. 29th, 2008 02:30 pm)
While I know a surprising number of you, actually given the extent of my introversion its a shocking number, I don't know most of you. I also have no idea how you got here or why you stay. If you have the time, please introduce yourself. Real names not required...
onyxhawke: (Default)
( Oct. 21st, 2007 08:35 am)
What are some your favorite books? Children's books? (first readers to teen), "classic literature", fantasy, urban fantasy, science fiction?

I don't think, for various reasons I'll comment to much on the last couple of categories, but I'll say that the books I've recommended to others don't always fall into the field of favorite, although I obviously don't hate them.

And what books do you think are good for introducing people to the SF/F spectrum? Some people are of the opinion that its the "classics" like Tolkien and Heinlein, I'm not so sure. The world view of some of the writers of their era is entirely alien to many today. And for the science fiction of the day some of the science was, well let's just say i hold it in the same esteem I do the pop psychology of the last decade or two.

A couple great kids books: Tony's Hardwork Day, The Boxcar Kids series, The Dark is Rising series, Madeline L'Engle's books, and of course My side of the Mountain. There's also a couple wonderful books that I can't recall that featured a kid (probably a girl) and a flying crocodile. My rather deplorable memory suggests the first book (iirc there were two) starts with the kid arriving at a summer cabin with their family.

(odd note, apparently the spell checker knows how to spell both Heinlein and Tolkien)
Since almost everyone reading me reads at least a fair amount of things in the science fiction - fantasy spectrum I've got some questions.

What creatures in fantasy (including urban fantasy) are you just plain sick of?

Are flashbacks annoying, sometimes needed, or just the most wonderifous things eva! ? (Ok, so i need to listen to my nieces friends less.)

Which is more entertaining to read about: The sappy sidekick supporting the substandard star or the reverse?

Which publisher is doing the covers that you think are most attractive right now?
onyxhawke: (Default)
( Aug. 31st, 2007 10:58 am)
So, who makes your "must buy" list? Who makes your "will probably buy list"?  Why? What book(s) put them there? What genre or genres do they write? Is this something your normally read?



onyxhawke: (Default)


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