it's a great life, if you don't weaken (matociquala) wrote,
it's a great life, if you don't weaken

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Thank you for those items that you sent me. The monkey. And the plywood violin.

booksquare links Brenda Hiatt's List of $$$--she's compiled a bunch of information on what publishers are paying Romance authors.

Useful information, no?

In other news, I want to talk about sweetness in stories, but I'm not quite sure what I want to say. By which I mean, those stories that buymeaclue calls "small, sweet stories." Stories that are compassionate, that occupy a place diagonally across the range from edgy and/or gritty stories, without being overly sentimental, twee, or one-dimensional. Connie Willis writes stories like this, sometimes. So does Peter Beagle.

I think they're not trendy, necessarily. But they're important. Edgy stories, painful stories, may feel moe important, may be more obvious in their importance. But I'm not entirely certain they mean more than the stories that embrace compassion as well as complexity, as long as they can do it without oversimplifying.

I think stories that attempt to do this may find themselves dismissed, or may make people uncomfortable, because nobody wants to have the label of sentimental and schmaltzy pasted over them. But there is a place for things that aren't sentimental, and are still emotionally honest.

Honesty is not, after all, only about cynicism. And cynicism in storytelling, taken to an extreme, produces stories that are as one-dimensional as the overly sympathetic stories.

Interesting. And I wonder how one would go about writing a story that was edgy and compassionate, all at once. It has to be possible.
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