The Literati and the Science Fiction Ghetto

I’m reading King of Shards (Book One of the Worldmender Trilogy), by Matthew Kressel, now. If this saga ends anywhere near as good as it has begun, I will have found my new favorite 21st century spec fic author. But, more on that later…

For now, I’ll leave you with a quote, from Mr. Kessel, about how the literature establishment looks down on speculative fiction:

Continue reading “The Literati and the Science Fiction Ghetto”

The ‘First Paragraph Test’

When critiquing or beta-reading, my “first paragraph test” runs at about a 80% to 95% positivity rate. It goes like this: 80-95% of the time, the start of the story I’m reading would be better if the first paragraph were deleted entirely and the story started with the second.

For published works? It clocks in at about a 50/50 clip. I’ve found this is also is true when editing my own works…especially short stories that I think I’ve ‘finished’.

I haven’t had the chance to fully think through why this is—but, once I noticed it, there was no denying it.