Saturday, July 31, 2010

Friday on Facebook, or at least the fun parts.

If you really know me, there are some things that you are aware of.
1. I'm not a social creature.
2. Time only has real meaning to me when you are interrupting mine.
3. I'm a lousy housekeeper.

These factors have me running around today in a haze of OMG, my mother in law is coming!  I can't stand yet another party right now, so what are we going to do for the Wee One's birthday?  Crap!  It's the 30th, and I haven't done any of my critiques for the writer's group!  Oh my friggin' gaaaaaawd, my mother in law is COMING HERE!!!

With that playing on loop in my mind, I came up from the basement, put away some things that I purposely placed in my computer chair to force myself to not leave them where they should not have been, and thought: "I watched reruns of The Vampire Diaries and Moonlight last night, so it must be Friday again."

Ugh.  Friday again, and I haven't done the research for the post that would cover not only Kelley Armstrong's books, but also what tidbits I could pick up from her on writing and the industry without reproducing the major posts on plotting and etc. she's put up for the writing members of her site (cuz she rocks like that).

Having skipped the last Friday post, I felt like I had to produce something.  I thought, "Hey, I can scan Facebook for all the author news that people not on FB--or who are on but not following a lot of authors--might not know.

Ah, the best laid plans....I believe I mentioned that I'd finally given in to FB and followed blogger Tez and Kelley Armstrong over to the site, only to be "friended" by a bunch of authors who, either assumed I had to be good people if I hung with them...or who at least thought maybe I'd buy their books.  Some of the others from the writing group friended me and introduced me to those obnoxious FB games that we all complain about when we're not playing them.  To advance in those games, you often need a large number of fellow players, so I found myself adding hundreds of people that I don't actually know to my friend's feed.  To be able to keep up with those I do know, I created a filter for friends and authors...

......I've got dozens of authors in that filter, but, I realized as I went searching for updates to post, there are also tens of second cousins twice removed and scores of people from my high school....

And then, the author posts are sorted out, they aren't all or even mostly about writing.  Do you really want to know that Devon Monk (Magic to the Bone (Allie Beckstrom) ) wrote: Great. Mutant spider's on the loose on my desk. Sprayed it w/bleach, didn't faze it. Think it flipped me off as it skittered under computer. 

Yeah, so do I!  Maybe it's feeling like your favorite authors are accessible, or the joy of glimpsing the person behind the words, but I enjoy the status updates I get daily on Facebook and when I remember to log in to Twitter.  So let's have some fun!

Gerrie Ferris-Finger (The End Game: A Mystery) linked to The E-books Article Drinking Game.  In my defense, I was also sick of the articles, but had to add my two scents when I got an e-reader of my very own.

Mark Henry (Happy Hour of the Damned) turned friends and fans on to funnies.

RG Alexander did a cyber Snoopy dance over a pic of her (?) new release shelved early at a certain Borders.     It's much like these other covers.... Lux in Shadow: Children of the Goddess Book 2  Twilight Guardian (Children of the Goddess) that are all primed and ready for me to put up, so you get the idea. I'm going to stop scanning updates because I feel a rant building.  I mean, why aren't more covers like this?  Not that I need all my books to be stamped with muscular or two will do nicely.  But if they're going to keep telling us that Urban Fantasy is a woman's genre, what's without all the female body parts on the cover?  I'm rereading Dime Store Magic (Women of the Otherworld), which now has a nifty new cover.  But I'm reading the original:
 Dime Store Magic (Women of the Otherworld, Book 3)What the hell?  Not only does the leg not make the book more appealing, but if you read just a chapter or two, you know that sure as hell isn't the narrator's leg!  Poor Paige, replaced by some skinny witch.  I'm not going to make the post too image heavy, but the urge is to show the sea of midriff and tramp stamps, broken up by the occasional over sized breasts or sexy thigh.

Humphf.  Rather than talk about the mixed messages of kick-ass heroines that have to look like sex kittens (even when they don't), I'm going to head over to R.G. Alexander's webpage to try and figure out if any of the paranormal romances come close enough to urban fantasy...or look sexy enough to keep me distracted from the fact that my mother in law is coming!


patriciahollett said...

Enjoyable blog! Interesting, funny, down to earth and the added bonus of some thoughts about books and book covers. The return thoughts about your MIL coming were a funny way to wrap it up.

An Again said...

Thanks, Patricia!

Nicole said...

Mmm, nice covers. (And yes, poor Paige.) I have to say, though, I originally went in to paranormal romance books hoping for the urban fantasy I loved with endings that made just a bit more sense than the ones I'd been reading at that time. I haven't looked back. (I still love UF, don't get me wrong. But I won't give up my PR either.)

Hope the visit went well!

Falcata Times said...

Great post.

Dunno if anything will distract from the MIL though. Mind you I've got a soft spot for mine. Quicksand.

An Again said...

Bookie, I want to know which UF ending weren't making sense!

Here's the thing for me...a really good PR is interchangeable with UF, except that when they label something PR, you KNOW that the male and female leads are going to end up HEA. In a UF, there may not even be leads of the opposite (or appropriately same) sex because, while there can be a lovely romance, it's not about that.

In bad PR (from the fantasy fan view...I've been led to believe the romance fans don't care; makes sense or this sort of PR wouldn't exist) tends to have worldbuilding that seems to have been created, start to finish, while flossing or shampooing hair. "The hero is immortal cuz I really liked Highlander...actually, he kind of looks like Duncan MacLeod and he DOES come from the Highlands...and there are werepanthers that live in the clouds cuz that would be so cool."

Aaaaand, the rules of this world are often violated by mid-book if not in the first act...

Regrettably, unable to tell that sort of PR from the other in the early days, I read--actually paid money for--too much of it and it left a bad taste in my mouth. And even the good ones can have endings that don't make sense to me. Maybe PR fans and UF fans (at least those who are primarily one or the other) have different world views that we bring to the reading?

An Again said...

Wow, that was a long comment (and Bookie rarely returns to the same post for conversation).

Meanwhile, Gareth, no quicksand for my MIL! I like her, I'm just uptight about her first visit!

Jessica Peter said...

I was always curious about that leg on Dime Store magic. That's the cover I have, too. Ah... the joys of marketing.

Kenny Celican said...

Heyla An! Hopped on over after reading your comment on my covers, only to find you writing an article about covers. I'm glad you said mine intrigued you, but you should have heard my internal monologue.

Hey, she's got a post about covers!

Oh, she's got a thing about girl-covers

No, you dork, it's a thing about inappropriate covers

Does she like the Road Mage cover?

I don't know. Ask her, why don't you?

So, I'm guessing it's a good thing the Decadent cover artist and I went back and forth to be sure we got Capricious right. Of course, working closely with the cover artist, I've gotten a little better look at why they're not always 'perfectly canon'. Still, there's a vast difference between 'canon glitch' and 'drastically inappropriate'.

So... Road Mage cover - good, bad, indifferent, or haven't seen it?

I agree on the PR = UF + HEA differentiation. I would like to point out, however, that I've read some UF that is just as poorly worldbuilt as the bad PR you mentioned.

Anyhow, good to meet you!