I hesitate to count how many blogs show up in my RSS list (I use Google Reader, by the way). However, one of the folders I maintain is a READ THESE FIRST folder that contains the blogs that I start my day with, usually as I eat my breakfast. I figure I’d mention them as a kind of Follow Friday for blogs that focus on science fiction and fantasy and/or the writing thereof. I urge you to check them out if you are so inclined to do so.
- SF Signal, which I mentioned earlier today, is the first place I go, usually to skim their tidbits to find out if there is something important I should know about so that I don’t get left out in the virtual cold.
- Whatever, the blog of John Scalzi, author of Old Man’s War and current president of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America. John’s is one of the oldest, and longest running blogs on the web. I like his writing style in part because it reminds me of my own. He is my model for a successful blogger.
- Nancy Kress’s blog. Nancy is the author of “Beggars in Spain” a story which blew me away when I read it. She is also an excellent novelist. Her blog is very down-to-earth and often focuses on the mechanics of story-telling. She struggles just as much as the rest of us sometimes and it is comforting to know that high caliber professionals like Nancy go through the same stresses that the rest of us do. It makes me feel a little more normal.
- Cassie Alexander’s blog. Cassie is a novelist and nurse. Her blogging on the process of writing a novel, finding an agent, and getting a major book deal has been inspiring, to say nothing of a heck of a lot of fun to watch unfold.
- Juliette Wade’s TalkToYoUniverse. I was aware of Juliette when she published her first story in Analog, but when I had lunch with Stan Schmidt back in November, he couldn’t stop talking about how great her stuff was, and as the new kid on the block, when Stan talks, I listen. He was right, and her blog is exceptional. She takes pains to describe the process of world-building in detail every Wednesday and her advice and thoughts on story-telling are spot on and have helped me on more than one occasion.
- Tobias Buckell. I enjoy Tobias’ posts on eBook and the eBook market. I think he has some particularly good insights here. He also has some fascinating posts on politics and while that is not necessarily science fiction related, a lot of what he has to say makes good sense, which is in pretty rare supply these days.
Throughout the day, as I have time I read a lot more blogs. Some of them are fellow Codexians like Brad R. Torgersen, Eric James Stone, Barbara A. Barnett and Mary Robinette Kowal. Brad is another Analog author (like Juliette) and he seems to be at the same stage of his writing career as I am and so what he has to say often resonates with me.
At least once a day, I check on the blog of my good friend, and excellent science fiction writer Michael A. Burstein. He doesn’t blog as much as he used to but he has a couple of good excuses. Still, every now and then, I’m pleasantly surprised to see his words and when I read his posts, I can practically hear his voice. Also about once a day are folks like Robert J. Sawyer, Bud Sparhawk, Frederick Pohl, Bill Shunn, Scott Edelman and the folks over at Magical Words. If you write fantasy or enjoy reading fantasy, then the Magical Words blog is an absolute must for you.
Finally, there is fantasy author Michael J. Sullivan, who is probably at this moment reading this post thinking how does he find the time to read all of this stuff? Michael isn’t as prolific a blogger as I am, but he is a Real Writer and fantasy novelist and his books are among the top selling fantasy eBooks on Amazon.
Why read all these blogs? Well, these people are doing something right. They are successful (or soon-to-be-successful) writers. And since I try to learn something new everyday, who better to learn from than people who are setting good examples.