Read my review of Old Man's War.
Tor is giving away one free e-book per week. The promotion is simple: go to their web site, sign-up for their newsletter, and, once a week for the foreseeable future, they'll send you an email with a link to a free e-book. It's easy, and you get free stuff, so go sign-up.
John Scalzi's Old Man's War is the second free e-book in Tor's Free E-book Giveaway (see my post on Mistborn for the scoop on the first). This is a book I've read lots and lots about. I'm almost embarrassed to admit that I've never read it. Now that Tor has given it away for free, though, I have no more excuses.
John Scalzi needs no introduction from me. He's known across the literary world as a top-notch science fiction author and within the blogosphere as the patron of the often-frequented and often-updated blog, The Whatever. He's known for his enlightening posts on how much he's made from his writing to his moving (and obviously very personal) piece, Being Poor.
Scalzi has a background in journalism, with stints at such places as The Fresno Bee and AOL. He became a freelance writer in 1998. His first non-fiction was published in 2000. His fiction, 2005. Scalzi has been nominated for many awards, including the Hugo Award for Best Novel in 2006 for Old Man's War, the John W. Campbell Award for Best New Writer in that same year, the Hugo Award for Best Fan Writer in 2007, and, in 2008, the Hugo for Best Novel (The Last Colony) and Best Fan Writer. For more info, see Scalzi's Wikipedia entry.
Old Man's War is the first e-book of the batch I plan to read.
Let it be yours, too. Go sign up for their promotion.
For a running list of all of Tor's free e-books, go here.
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The sad truth...
"The percentage of writers make a living off of their writing is pitifully small, and that's one reason so many fiction writers keep their day jobs."
Fiction Factor - Book Advances, Royalty Checks & Making a Living as a Writer
New blog site... The First Book, where Scott William Carter interviews first time authors.
I don't think I have a problem with using clichés in my own writing, mostly because such phrases as "easy as pie" don't usually fit within the context of my fantasy world. Perhaps in dialog, where really anything goes (with exceptions, of course), but not in the text in general.
Despite the need to avoid clichés, the author of the post suggests letting "the clichés come", at least at first. Trying to avoid them is a potential roadblock, and you don't want any impediments keeping you from making progress.
However, once you've got that first draft completed, "equip yourself with the right armory, and snipe at them clichés one by one!" I'm not sure what "snipe at them" means, but I get the gist of it: get rid of them!
Why Cutting Clichés From Your Copy is as Easy as Pie | Copyblogger
This brings back some memories... Where the Wild Things Are, The Very Hungry Caterpillar, The Cat in the Hat...
For "early teens"... The Call of the Wild (excellent book), The Outsiders (good movie; never read the book), The Hound of the Baskervilles, The Hobbit...
If I had kids, I'd start them reading from the list NOW.
100 books every child should read - An introduction by Michael Morpurgo - Telegraph