Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Malay Mail Grabs the Blogger Authors!

Although initially the reason was to talk about my books, my present aims are much wider than that. I highlight conservation issues for a start. I hope in some little way to increase awareness of Malaysia’s stunning biodiversity and its importance. If you want to see photographs of anything from the Imbak Valley or a pill millipede – come to my blog.

I also cater for fans and readers of science fiction and fantasy, and for would-be authors of those kind of books. I post on things like how to get published or how to write a fantasy novel or how to improve your writing. I tell fans about what’s coming out next of mine, and will happily answer questions about my books, past and up-andcoming.

Occasionally I blog about social issues, especially when I feel a grave injustice is being done, or when authorities try to take away our rights on the flimsiest of excuses. I like to point out ironies and idiocies and bigotry. (There is so much material here for a fantasy writer…and of course, I use that material in my books. What writer wouldn’t?)
It's been a lovely surprise over the last couple of days to see a couple more writing friends who are also bloggers featured in the Malay Mail. Yesterday it was conservationist/fantasy author Glenda Larke who blogs at Tropic Temper. (And thanks so much, Glenda for naming me your favourite blogger! Guess we're in each other's fanclubs now.)

Today it's the turn of short story writer Robert Raymer, who blogs as BorneoExpatWriter which is a must-read for everyone interested in learning about the craft of writing.

In the article he says :
Blogging hasn’t changed my life, just my writing life, or how I view writing. Before, I would write or pitch articles for publications, but now I write posts on writing to help inspire other writers. Then later, I think some of these would make pretty good articles, so I would rewrite them and submit them for publication. This is a recent development, but so far one has already been published. So blogging in this sense serves a new purpose for me, it gets me to write articles that I may not have written in the first place, plus they become fodder for paying articles and workshops.

It’s also nice when readers of my stories and former writing students stumble across my website or blog and contact me. Also the website/blog is invaluable for editors, agents, publishers and reviewers to get more information about me and to read samples of my writing. So far I’ve got one US$500 writing assignment from the US, one full page interview and book review ( Borneo Post ), and one workshop presentation (in Miri) from strangers who came across my website.
So you see, blogging is a mighty useful thing!

(Sorry for being away from you all for so long. My computer is repaired and has a whole lot of new parts inserted and I'm really happy with it now. All my troubles have made blogging more effortful than it should have been, and it's a real pleasure to be back to normal.)


Yusuf said...

Cooo and I never see the Malay Mail up here in Ulu land

bibliobibuli said...

at least now the whole thing is online. i think it's a good compromise that it foes up several hours after the paper comes out.

X said...

I see it's about as useful as working for 3 months in the fast food industry :)

BorneoExpatWriter said...

Thanks Sharon! The last seven days has been like a blitz for me. Found out there's a review of Lovers and Strangers Revisited in Cleo, Nov p283, got three interviews! Besides Malay Mail, I'll be in The Expat, and also Daphne Lee is awaiting my 9 page reply to her 20 questions for the Star. I'm in Borneo Talk, Oct-Dec, Quill, Oct-Dec, Air Asia last month. My hat's off to Shirley Ng at MPH. She's doing a great job getting the word out and following up on these reviews/interviews!

And the biggest news of all: Obama won! Finally there's hope in America (and the world) again. This is huge. Goodbye and good riddance to George W. As an American, I am qualified to say this! Eight years was torture!

X said...

I don't like GWB myself, but I have to admire the way he planned his life. How did someone that incompetent manage to snag two terms? I think he did right by his wife, children and parents. His parents are provided for, his children have great futures. In that way he's a very successful man.

BorneoExpatWriter said...

He has to thank Karl Rove for that and for becoming the Texas governor, too, which he did in a very underhanded way by smearing his popular predessor, who happened to be a woman. More or less he was a figurehead for the neocons who had free reign. His family has to live with the consequences of his presidency for the rest of their lives. Financially they're set. Emotionally, bankrupt, just like the economy. History, after every thing gets played out, will not be kind to that man. Even his own party washed their hands of him; he had become an embarrassment. He was not even invited to the Republican convention -- they didn't want him there! That says a lot right there. I wish him luck!

X said...

Okay I will need your help here because I know you're right but I can't justify it.

I need to know why it's not a good thing to prioritize financial gain at the expense of people who are not your family.

To me it seems like if I had a chance to be President, to see my parents and children comfortable, I'd risk life itself. If I can buy my parents a few houses, and ensure that my children (and their children) need not want for anything again as long as they live, I'd risk pretty much everything. I wouldn't care about what people I didn't know and didn't care about thought about me.

The thing about it is, if one day my parents need to have an operation that cost millions, emotionally-bankrupt me would be able to afford it.

The alternative would have led to me watching them die because my emotionally-rich self couldn't afford the treatment. I'd have to stand aside and helplessly watch them die.

If tomorrow they wanted to drink real Viennese coffee in Vienna, emotionally-bankrupt me would be able to afford it. History can think what it likes, I did my duty to my parents and children.

That doesn't sound right, and I more than anyone know it. I can't think of why it's wrong. Hopefully someone can.

I could repay my debt to my parents, give them great returns on their investment. My children (and their children, possibly) would be set. I don't see why that's wrong, but I honestly would like to know.

How much would I risk for my mother to be able to say "that's a step up for them, isn't it?" like his mom did? How much to drive up to a fancy hotel in a luxury car, and have the doorman open the door for her? how much would that be worth?

I don't see why any of this is wrong. She deserves at least that much, and I should have been able to provide it.

As I said, I "feel" that this would be wrong, but I can't justify my feelings, so someone's got to do it for me.

Emotionally rich or just emotional? said...

@ x,

re: "my emotionally-rich self couldn't afford the treatment. I'd have to stand aside and helplessly watch them die."

There you go. You're never helpless if you're "emotionally rich."

Granted, it's rare to find those gods with truly rich interiorities.

If you do, grab them and hold on to them like you've got the world's most precious jewel.