jenniferkoliver: (Steampunk Woman)
Jennifer K. Oliver ([personal profile] jenniferkoliver) wrote2013-07-02 01:06 pm

Stuff, things, and historical dudes (and Blackmill!)

How to Report Sexual Harassment, by Elise Matthesen, via Jim C. Hines. A lot of people will have seen this, but for those who haven't, it's worth a read.

Making career-changing, life-changing decisions can be scary, but they can also give you a clearer focus, a more obvious and solid goal to push towards. That clarity helps your work grow stronger. Having a direction gives you more confidence.

Last week was the Chalke Valley History Festival, which ran all week and was jam-packed with historical goodness (low in calories, high in fibre). Me and some friends went on the Saturday to a History Writing seminar. This was backdropped by the sound of distant cannons and gunshots, but don't worry, it was just part of the WWII reenactment taking place across the field. I really liked the panelists—author Charles Cumming, publishing director Eleo Gordon, literary agent Mark Lucas, and publishing director Bill Scott-Kerr. The floor was opened to audience questions, and at one point Fifty Shades of Grey was brought up (obviously).

But something I've been finding with the writing events I attend is the advice is almost always beginner-focused. Most of it I already know. It's great to be encouraged by professionals—that never gets old—but the tips themselves are generally generic, and sometimes audience questions feel a bit like a waste of precious time. I think I'm going to take a step back from lit festival seminars and workshops for a while. They're great for beginners, but they make me wish there were more seminars aimed at mid-to-pro level writers. Plus, sometimes they're not cheap.

Other than that, the festival was fab. There was a lot of reenactment, some cool aerial displays, steam engines, and stalls selling all kinds of nifty things. I got a couple of pics of historical dudes being historical:





Miracle, by Blackmill. Been listening to this beautiful, melodic dubstep while doing edits on the novel. I love Blackmill right now!