Monday, October 20, 2008

Questionable Content and Other Sundry Notions

So one of the biggest productivity-killers I've encountered of late has been the amusing and endearing webcomic, Questionable Content by Jeph Jacques. It's a wonderful ongoing comedy about twentysomethings in college, hanging out, having coffee, listening to hipster music and contemplating life, sex, love and pop culture. The website is here, but if you're new to the comic, you should probably start reading from the beginning, here.

I guess what I like best about this story is that it reminds me in many respects of Oh Well, Whatever, Nevermind, my own novel about twentysomething lovelorns growing up and hanging out. I think Jacques nails the sentimentality and the poignancy better than I did, however, and I really think his work deserves to be read. Please check it out; I think you'll enjoy!


On to other topics, this weekend I completed the third rewrite of The Darkness and the Stars, which is the follow-up volume to The Unearthing. I am currently recruiting beta readers to go over the "finished" story and let me know their thoughts. For fans of The Unearthing, this is your chance to read the next part of the story before anyone else; it is also an opportunity to provide feedback to the author, and possibly help shape the final version of the novel.

I am also looking for beta-readers for another project some of you may be familiar with, called Crossroads. The latter story is technically "finished", having debuted eight years ago on the Jumpgate web portal. However, I feel it needs a bit of polish. It has proven beyond my capacity to see where to tweak it, so I'm offering it up for book-doctoring. I know it needs some work, I just don't know where.

If you're interested in helping with either project, you can either reply to this post or email me. Don't be concerned if you're not a writer; what's more important is that you be a reader. It is a reader's opinion I need.


Also in the "ME" news, I will be going back over Oh Well, Whatever, Nevermind as my next project. Following the suggestions of one of it's beta readers, I will be doing the final revision of that story by starting with the last chapter and working backwards. Likely, Nevermind will be the next story I submit for publication. I'll be shortly in the market for an agent/publicist to help with that.

Well, that's it for this post. Glad to be writing about writing again...I'm sick of that beady-eyed fat fuck Stephen Harper. God help us, we have at least another two years of his shit to live through.


Anthony James Barnett - author said...

The final polishing of work is always the worst. I call it the, is it ready, isn't it, sydrome. I dither for ages before submitting.

Hope you find what's wrong soon. Good luck


Steve Karmazenuk said...

Thanks for that, Anthony. I find that enlisting beta readers. Another person is distanced from the project, both emotionally and creatively. I especially enjoy the opinions of people who aren't writers themselves, because a writer's perspective is often one of "Well, this is what **I** would do", where someone who is an avid reader is more likely to base their opinion on how they relate to the story.

That outside perspective is especially important because it provides vital audience feedback, allowing me to know what the reader enjoyed and what they didn't enjoy, and why.

Steve Karmazenuk said...

...that being said, however, I wouldn't turn away another author as a beta reader...