New entry Nov 01
Critters is 21!
Yes, 21 years ago Critters was born. Wow! Thanks so much to all of you, who've made it such a resounding success!
Books from Critters!
Check out Books by Critters for books by your fellow Critterfolk, as well as my list of recommended books for writers.
How to Write SF
The Craft of Writing Science Fiction that Sells by Ben Bova, best-selling author and six-time Hugo Award winner for Best Editor. (This is one of the books your ol' Critter Captain learned from himself, and I highly recommend it.) (Also via Amazon)
New Book from a Critter Member**NOW IN PRINT EDITION TOO!** Awesome new book, HOW TO IMPROVE YOUR SPECULATIVE FICTION OPENINGS, from a Critter member whose unearthed a shard of The Secret to becoming a pro writer. Really good piece of work. "...if you're at all concerned about story openings, you'd be nuts not to read what Qualkinbush has to say." —Wil McCarthy, author of BLOOM and THE COLLAPSIUM
P&E Seeks New Caretaker
Unfortunately, much of the data on the P&E site has become stale and outdated, and needs a new caretaker with the time required to update the site. The listings are being removed until they can be updated by a new caretaker.
Note that the P&E/Critters Annual Readers Poll will run as usual in January.
If you are interested in taking the reins of P&E, and possess what's needed — at least 20hrs/week to volunteer, excellent investigative skills, in-depth knowledge of the publishing industry, ability to detect scams from not-scams, thick skin, good web site skills, good writing ability — please get in touch. Thanks for your interest!
I'm being interviewed live on public radio for Critters 20th birthday. For those who want to listen, it's on the 10am (Mountain time) show on Thursday, 11/19/16, on Colorado Public Radio - www.cpr.org has streaming on the site or it's 90.1 FM in the Denver area. [Interview is done, you can listen on the site]
Free Web Sites
Free web sites for authors (and others) are available at www.nyx.net.
ReAnimus Acquires Advent!
ReAnimus Press is pleased to announce the acquisition of the legendary Advent Publishers! Advent is now a subsidiary of ReAnimus Press, and we will continue to publish Advent's titles under the Advent name. Advent was founded in 1956 by Earl Kemp and others, and has published the likes of James Blish, Hal Clement, Robert Heinlein, Damon Knight, E.E. "Doc" Smith, and many others. Advent's high quality titles have won and been finalists for several Hugo Awards, such as The Encyclopedia of Science Fiction and Fantasy and Heinlein's Children. Watch this space for ebook and print editions of all of Advent's current titles!
Network speeding up
I'm switching the connection over to a new, shiny 10X faster network because of all the load. There might be bits of downtime as your boxes learn new addresses and things. Should be brief. Let me know of any prolonged outages you see.
Preditors & Editors Changeover
With the very sad passing of Dave Kuzminski, who ran P&E, I've taken over the P&E duties. Lots of what I hope are improvements; check it out at pred-ed.com.
is Dying has been Replaced
THE SIGIL TRILOGY: The universe is dying from within... "Great stuff... Really enjoyed it." — SFWA Grandmaster Michael Moorcock
Announcing ReAnimus Press
If you need help making ebooks from manuscripts or print copies—or finding great stuff to read—look no further! An ebook publisher started by your very own Critter Captain. (And with a 12% Affiliate program.) [More]
To quit or not to quit, that is the question...
(Or whether 'tis nobler to zero one's counter)
Lots of folks ask me for advice on how to handle absences from Critters. You make the call, but there's a lot of flexibility here when it comes to quiting (or going inactive) vs. going on email hiatus vs. zeroing your counter.
There are a few basic reasons someone visits this page:
- You want to reduce the amount of email you get from Critters
- You need to arrange an extended absence from Critters
- You need to arrange a short absence from Critters
- You feel you're too far behind to ever catch up
- You're absolutely sure you want to quit the group for good
To accommodate these arrangements, we have a flexible array of options to suit your needs (& there's a form below to do the deed once you've chosen):
- If you want to reduce email load
(and don't want to lose all your existing critique credits),
then you want to
set your email preferences
to "0" mss. and No emailed critiques.
Your participation ratio will
decline if you go away, but that's what the 75% is all about -- the 25% was
designed to cover absences if you otherwise send in one critique per week.
You can "stock up" before you go, or
you can raise the ratio rapidly on your return by doing a bunch of
critiques (of current stories, or old ones with author permission).
Set your preferences back any time.
- If you're taking a short break from Critters and don't mind losing
your critique points, the best option is to set your preferences to no
email like above, then, when you return, use the same form below to
'zero' or 'reset' your counter.
when you first return to make sure you're actually below 75%, otherwise
it isn't worthwhile).
However, note that if you fail to do at least one critique in any calendar month, you are subject to being inactivated.
- If you plan to be gone more than a month, but want to keep up with the
goings on in Critters, then use the form below to set yourself inactive.
While inactive, you'll still get the weekly email notes, but no manuscripts
and your counter is set to zero until you want to return, when it starts
counting fresh again. You can remain inactive for as long as you want; years,
etc. reactivate when you're ready.
- If you feel you're just too far behind to catch up, then have me
reset/zero your counter. Acts like you just joined today; ramifications
are that any manuscript in the queue goes to the end as if you just sent it
today, you lose all your credits, and you must have at least one credit
to forfeit -- if you're already at zero or below, you'll have to do one
to make up for it, which is to say you'll get a "-1" credit.
- If you just want absolutely nothing more to do with Critters (for now --
you're welcome back any time),
or you're taking a hiatus and know that your current email address won't
remain valid, then you should use the form below to entirely
quit and rejoin when you get back.
Since Critters' goal is to keep people as active as possible, between these choices you should find something to suit you. When in doubt, send extra critiques! :-)
Your request will be processed as soon as aburt's software minions get to it; you'll receive an email confirmation when that happens.
Other comments/questions/etc. to the cap'n.