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"Ride" by Lana Del Rey Review [yMusic]

Lana Del Rey is re-releasing her album Born to Die as the Paradise Edition this November. I'm definitely getting it.

Want proof? Here it is.


Dogtown Weekly: The Short Story High is Over

Monday:

Wednesday:

Thursday:


Writer's Updates: Will I Be Writing More Short Stories Soon?

Let's say that the writing spree I was on, which peeked at about seven pages in one school day, died. Now I have to drag the corpse and figure out how to write again.

Winner of "Let's Write a Short Story!" Giveaway

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The winner of Let's Write a Short Story! by Joe Bunting is...Leocadia!

Congrats, Leocadia! I hope you find this writing guide helpful and insightful.


(If you haven't already responded to the email, you have seventy-two hours from the moment this post goes live to claim your prize. If you don't, I choose another winner.)

Some Notes

Don't fret if you don't win. I have at least two or three giveaways planned for the rest of the year, and therefore plenty of other opportunities to win.

Don't forget to enter! The more people that enter, the more likely I'll keep holding these giveaways.

Come back Friday for a (properly done) Dogtown Weekly, right at breakfast.

One More Thing

Here's a giveaway on the other side of the Internet. Ever since I won a $50 Amazon gift card from a book tour, I've been keeping an eye out for these kinds of giveaways.

Once I spot enough, I might add them into my weekly round-ups.

Focus Less On the Eyes

When a writer really wants to get poetic, or don't know what else to go to for description, they go straight for the eyes.

As someone who doesn't remember the eye color of no more than five people while discounting standard phenotype, eyes comes off as being overused.

Do Teens Even Notice Eye Color?

This isn't just from personal experience.

For example, in a formal that Dad pushed me into, one of the things we learned about etiquette is to look at our partner directly in the eyes.

You wouldn't believe how many teens don't do that without being prompt.

So in many cases, it seems like teen characters notice eye colors too quickly.

Thing is, unless there's something especially about a character's eye color, it's not an especially memorable detail. Really, the most important details is hair color, race, frame, etc. The little details are the ones readers usually fill in, including eye color. 

It's not like you're going to cause anyone to stumble over a description if you describe one's eyes halfway through the story, like what would probably happen with race.

Does Romance Receive a Discount?

Now, I can't represent the opinion of everyone here. I'm not exactly sure, but at least in Fictionland, when you have a romantic connection with someone, you tend to notice a lot about one's eyes. Besides the exact tint of it, you can discern a lot about mood as you swim in the pools. You can sense a storm or a wailing plead.

Does this happen in real life?

I'll give the benefit of the doubt and say yes, even though I'm not the one to be swayed for romantic tendencies.

Everyone Else Pays Full Price

In other situations, eye color shouldn't be something the writer fixates over. There're many other details in a story's world you can delegate words to. Sure, you can get special with eyes (exotic colors, scars), but that won't be the case for most characters.

My point though is that eyes shouldn't be a description fallback. If you find yourself bringing them up too much, it might be worth doing some slashing and swapping with more creative words during editing.

I won't point fingers this time, but at least one author who wrote a really great novel was guilty of focusing on eyes too much. She might have drifted from this though.

On the other hand, there's a very famous trilogy...

...never mind.

How I Do Eyes

At least in Manifestation Files, like with a lot of other elements, I went and played with eyes.

By default, my narrator, Bryan, doesn't notice eyes. He observes certain things more than others, and that particular part of the face falls under his radar.

An exception is when the character in question is a psychic. Eyes are one of the few differences between a "mundane" person and a psychic, at least from the "Muggle's" point-of-view. It's just that impression that something is off.

So when you're reading and eyes are brought up, take that as a sign.

You'll either thank me later when you catch pieces of foreshadowing you'd otherwise miss--or curse me out when I lob a red herring your way. ;)

Hey, it's one way to be creative.

It's YOUR TURN to respond!


What is your opinion on eyes in fiction? Should they be brought out in details, or a small matter to be brushed over in most cases?

Answer in the comments, or write about it on your own blog and link back. Responses will be compiled into the next round-up.

"Sweet Nothing" by Calvin Harris feat. Florence Welch [yMusic]

"Sweet Nothing" cover.
Look at those trees.
Written by Chihuahua Zero (@chihuahuazero)

FOR MORE MUSIC REVIEWS LIKE THIS, check out the yMusic page!

Since homecoming is tonight, I'm reviving yMusic as an irregular series. I'll be doing most of my music blogging on the Dogtown Weekly, once I figure out how to do those.

Considering I created a steady stream of search traffic with one of my last music reviews, they're worth doing. It might not be the most ideal traffic, but people are coming, even if it's only about five a day or so.

So let's do another one, one that I've been waiting for the music video for: "Sweet Nothing"!

What Does "Sweet Nothing" Mean?

From the lyrics, the song is about the singer (Florence) being in an empty and harmful relationship while being unable to break away.
 You see, the verses and bridge refer to what can be verbal abuse. (“You took my heart, and you held it in your mouth/And with a word, all my love came rushing out”; “It isn't easy for me to let it go/Cause I swallow every single word”).
 For the “sweet nothing” itself, the subject that Florence is singing to basically disguises his abuse as love. It’s nothing (horrible), but it’s sweet.
 Generally, it’s hard for people to get out of abusive relationships because, despite the pain, their partner/spouse/parent still love them in a warped way, and that’s enough to make letting go difficult. “Sweet Nothing” reflects this pain.
 Funny thing is, the lyrics are dark yet the song is gravely upbeat. It’s classic Florence, and its obvious that she had her hand in writing this song with Mr. Harris.

I hope that's clear enough.

Meaning of the Video

This video is confusing, and it's likely some of you might not be able to put the pieces together the first viewing. I didn't.

So I'll do the interpretation...

The blonde man in the beginning is Florence's ex. They've broken up. The ex got angry because the cashier asked about her. Florence is performing at a cozy strip club, with Calvin Harris looking at her from the occupied audience, who is having time with the hookers.

Three men come out of the car and start beating up the ex. Florence starts getting uneasy on-stage.
This is when things become less straight-forward. Keep in mind there are two men in place: Calvin and the ex. In one scene, the ex and Florence are arguing. It's clear that they're in an abusive relationship.

Observe how the ex gets close to Florence at the end of the sequence--as if he's about to beat or rape her.
In the bathroom, Florence is recounting her pain to Calvin.

Calvin decides to do something about it. He pays the men with a wad of cash to beat the ex and to extract revenge.

Florence most likely knows this, since at the same time the ex is being beaten up, she's breaking down on stage. She rips off her jacket and shirt. She starts rolling on the ground. She's wrecking the stage.

And no one's caring. Especially not the old man dancing with a stripper.

She's "Breaking Down" again...although this video has no relationship with that song.

Review

To be honest, I think this should've been more intense.

To Explain

Florence was in different territory here. Instead of being in a fantastical macabre, she's in a more realistic and gritty setting.

Whoever directed the video could've made the assault bloodier, and nail the pain into the audience's eyes. Florence's performance could've used more energy. If not that, then the break down could've been more passionate, dragging the viewers down to her level.

And during the scene where Florence and the ex are arguing, I think a carefully crafted shot could've served as a sucker punch. Let us see them in that one position that distills chills.

Maybe that's one problem. The shots are too rapid. It's too confusing. There isn't enough time spent on one particular scene. And another problem is that the song had such energy, but it didn't transfer into the video.

On the Other Hand...

What stood out in this video the most is how Florence's and the ex's movements mirror each other.
For example, the first punch is probably the most powerful move in the entire piece. It's timed to the breakdown. But at that instant, when the ex is knocked to the side--Florence spins.

During the first viewing, I thought that Florence was feeling the assault.

This make sense. Florence becomes more ignited throughout the song, until she breaks down, and then she starts rolling to the ground just like him. His physical pain is her emotional pain.

At the very end, they both kneel down at the ground.

Florence looks up during the closing shot.

Is the ex doing the same?

I wished this angle was played up. If it was made explicit, it would've been both an awesome and mindblowing concept as the viewers realize what's happening. How better would the video be if he bled and then she starts bleeding and when the thugs break his neck--she dies?

The real question is though: What's the meaning of this?

Who knows? I care is about this interpretation. It's likely that it's wrong, but it's worth thinking about.

YOUR TURN: What do you think of "Sweet Nothing? Answer in the comments!

Also, don't forget to share this post with somebody else. Go color your Twitter with some Flo!

Dogtown Weekly: 9/21/12

Monday:



1st Guest Post Blitz: The Other Side of the Story

Quick post, since I'm occupied with a webinair.

First of all, I did a blogging post over at NeoBluePanther's blog, on the time when I received lots of traffic from Tumblr and Reddit. If you didn't notice this, you shouldn't. Jump over there!

(I'll be writing more blogging-based articles in the future, but they will be mostly guest posts on other blogs.)

Second of all, my last guest post of the blitz is over at The Other Side of the Story! It's on fictional cursing, how it can be done wrong, and how to do it right. Check it out.

See you Friday on results on this blitz.

1st Guest Post Blitz: Keepin up with the Joneses

Today, the guest post blitz continues!

Unfortunately, it's likely that my next guest post will be my last official guest post within this seven-day period, but I'm still monitoring for growth, especially on the email front. (Hint, hint.)

Now, here's the second post...


Is IMAGINE Still Worth Reading?

Cover of Imagine: How Creativity Works, by Jonah Lehrer.
Such a nice cover.
Before Jonah Lehrer was caught fabricating quotes, my mom was reading that same book last Memorial weekend.

We and the rest of the family were on vacation. She brought Imagine: How Creativity Works along with her, reading out of it back at the cabin, and probably the lakeside.

She loved it, and expressed this several times. In fact, she read some of the riddles or logic puzzles from one section of the book and had me find the solution for them. I got most of them right, but the puzzles were quite intriguing.

I even read the prologue of it at an Italian restaurant once we were back home, although I returned it to her because she wasn't done with it.

I was planning to read it, but then the controversy hit and killed future sales.

I'm not sure if Mom even knows the fact that Lehrer fabricated several Bob Dylan quotes.

But if I'm right, it's still in her room, on the shelf under the HD television.

I could still read it. Should I, or should I not?

Disclaimer: Not Your Typical Imagine Post

You know what? I'm not just going say what everyone else already said on this issue. Fabricating those quotes was dumb on Lehrer's part. I'm just going to say that, but just saying that is just adding to the echo chamber. 

Hey, can you do me a favor and tweet this? It's for an experience.

"Chiming in about a trend without contributing anything new or interesting is not helpful." <--[Click to Tweet]

It's too late to jump onto the bandwagon anyways, so I might as well play devil's advocate.

Read on to find out why.

Genre Favorites Blogfest!

Yes! Another one!

Way back in February, when I only had about three or four followers (after months!), I participated in the Origins Blogfest.

Now I'm back with another one from Alex J. Cavanaugh!


A picture of the Genre Favorites Blogfest banner from Alex J. Cavanaugh.
Who designed this banner? I want to know.

Response Round-up: Politics and Graceling

First of all, I apologize for this being a day later than I promised! I had homework and a pasta dinner on Friday, and I had to go to a cross-country meet first thing in the morning Saturday.

Now, I gathered plenty of responses for both topics, just from the comments alone, but also off-site.

First of All, Another Apology

For my post on Graceling, I didn't give the other side enough credit.

One of the people that inspired the post messaged me briefly after, pointing out that paraphrasing her was warping her argument. 

I should've dug up the original post, or at least contacted her before pulling the post out of my buffer, but it's too late for that.

I'll be linking her below.


1st Guest Post Blitz: Lydia Sharp

Two weeks ago, I decided it was time to use some of the drafts laying around on my Blogger account for something useful.

Namely, writing like Freddy Krueger. Or rather, a Freddy Jr. If I planned a month ahead, I would have secured more slots, but it's too late for that.

Three W's

What am I doing? Guest posting on other blogs within the span of seven days.

Why am I doing it? The more guest posts at once, the more exposure.

Why should you care? More writing articles, that's what!

I'll be finding the main focus of my blog within the next month or so, so there will be a point which several article types will no longer fit the theme, and therefore be better suited on more fitting sites. It's all about finding the proper home for my words.

Guest Post #1: Crying Characters Won't Drown Your Story

Girl crouched in fetal position in front of a dark green wall.
Look at her.
Starting today, the first of at least 3-4 guest posts, with at least three others, are up on the Internet.

Lydia Sharp is the first host! Click through to her blog for my writing craft article on why there are points your character should cry.

Don't forget to check out her other stuff! And say hi!

Also, check back tomorrow for two more posts: My regular contribution at YA Indie, and another at a fellow follower's blog. See you Saturday!

Dogtown Weekly: Goodbye Facebook!

This is the first Dogtown Weekly!

Read through it...

...And don't be afraid to give some feedback.

Weekly Round-ups

Monday:

Tuesday:

Wednesday:



Writer's Updates: I Submitted to a Contest!

Let's Create a Community Through Discussion!

In the constant journey of finding this blog's purpose, while playing Bejeweled Blitz while I was supposed to be making Social Studies notes, I had an idea.

It was sprouted by the amount of response from the last two week's posts, along with the post on 9/11. This is the most response I got for my blog yet. It's not much, but I'm receiving quite a lot of opinions--and even an objection or two.

Now, the question remains: How can I use this buzz in a way that helps everyone involved? I don't want each post to be a hit-and-run incident, where someone leaves a comment and doesn't stick around. And I don't want people's words existing in isolation. I want actual discussion. I want to create a forum-like structure, without the rigidness.

Every post on Monday will end with a discussion question.

I will then encourage everyone to write their answer either directly in the comments, or on their own blog, or at a forum. If it's off-site, you can then either post a comment with the link, or tweet me with it.

On Wednesday, I'll post a round-up of all the answers--and then encourage open discussion.

This is an experiment.

Two days might not be long enough for some people to write proper responses.

It's quite possible that there won't be any follow-up discussion.

So I'm asking you guys to do one thing.

Saturday will be the first of these "Response Round-ups". Once it is up, make an attempt to either respond to someone else's comment, or comment on one of the blog posts

And then hold a conversation or debate. It can be a short one. 

Try two-by-two at first. And then jump into another conversation with three people.

Be civil. Be tolerant. Don't spit bile. Read one's arguments and opinions, respect them, but feel free to explore them, challenge it, see where you can go.

I will be watching this experiment.

If it works, if we can actually start a forum-like discussion, we might have something.

We might be able to forge a community. Together.

My number one goal with this blog to form a community. Until now, I struggled with how to do that. 

Maybe this is the solution. Maybe not.

Is it even possible to maintain a community across a string of blogs connected by one post and a comments thread?

Maybe it's a pipe dream.

But this is only a request. I'm only asking for thirty minutes of your week to come together with other readers and writers to talk about what we love. Even if it might involve ruffling some feathers.

But, all we need is five people.

Five people might lead to ten. And then twenty. And then thirty. And then more and more...

So, one thing. Go and write a response to one of these questions:



And Now...Boring Stuff

Also, I've decided that it might be better for my blog if I get rid of the Writer's Updates--at least in this form.

I have a few reasons why I should do this:


  1. I often end up scraping up the Writer's Update on Tuesday, resulting in lower quality.
  2. It feels strange to have it at the end of the week.
  3. I feel like the Writer's Updates aren't really useful or entertaining.
  4. I'm a little paranoid about whatever the weekly round-ups are ranking good on Google or not, considering they're originally posted on the TV Tropes forum.
  5. I want something else for Wednesday.

Solution? Merge the Writer's Updates and the Weekly Round-ups (and maybe even yMusic, which I originally planned to ditch) into one large blog post: The Dogtown Weekly.

What Will Be The Dogtown Weekly?

Basically, sort of like a newspaper, with each "feature" a mini-article within the whole post. I might create a graphic for this, but I currently have no plans for that. For now, I want to create something that is as successful as the Monday posts.

Hopefully, you guys will love this format.

Personal updates will be in the first Dogtown Weekly.

Oh, and Guest Posts

By the way, I'm planning for some guest posts to go up on other blogs, starting this Friday.

So far, only two are confirmed, three might be confirmed, one in limbo, and two pending. Yes, this was a last minute thing I should've planned for in advance.

(Fact: I wrote all the above during the last five minutes of lunch hour. Thank god for computer labs.)

So...

If you want a guest post on writing or reading on your blog next week, please email me at chihuahuazero [at] gmail [dot] com. I'll be pleased to write one as long as I'm allowed to choose the topic (although you can give a suggestion), and link back to this blog.

The more, the merrier! Don't miss out on this chance!

One More Thing--I Swear

By the way, I've extended the Rafflecopter giveaway for Joe Bunting's "Let's Write a Short Story" e-book two more weeks. Be sure to enter!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

EDIT: I've posted my entry for the "Let's Write a Short Story!" contest! Jump over to read it.

9/11: From Someone Who Doesn't Remember It

TRIGGER WARNING: I'm not sure what in this post might upset anyone sensitive to 9/11, so if you are, go to this site. It has puppies.

The 11st anniversary of a tragedy I was too young to recall snuck up on me.

On a Tuesday.

It's worth breaking my schedule to post and say my say. Even if it's only a droplet in the ocean, one droplet is a tear, and a tear can make all the difference.

Unvivid

Thing is, I was too young to remember 9/11. Everything I know about what happened during 9/11/01 is second-hand from Mom.

According to her, she had to keep me from the television, and then hide the newspaper from me the next day. Back then, I was an avid reader for quite some time. If it wasn't for her, I would've been exposed to such an incident from an earlier age. 

But who knew if I could've comprehended such an incident?

Still, the knowledge slipped into my mind somehow, at some point over the year, just like death. One day, 9/11 waved hello at me, settled down in my brain cells, and minded its own business, never attempting to haunt me, or show any particular malice.

It didn't have any reason to. I didn't lose anybody to 9/11. Nobody in my family is a firefighter, policeman, or a pilot, and nobody lived in New York when the Twin Towers were hit.

In short, there's no way I can imagine the experience's vividness--except through story.

Historical Fiction

To admit, I attempted to write a historical fiction on 9/11 back in elementary school, before my first novel attempt.

Heh. An historical fiction. It's a very loose use of the term, yet that what I thought of it as.

It was a simple story, of a girl whose father was in the towers, and her attempts to find out what happened to him.

Like most of my stories, it fell into disinterest, and forever is lost.

It's a shame.

If I even had it with me right now, would it even be safe to post an excerpt? What would be worse? The bad writing, or the very topic?

But in any case, this tiny scene, one that only I remember, shows how apathetic I was, and am, about 9/11.

It was an event I didn't put much thought to.

It was historical fiction.

Even though it was only about five years ago.

To me, it was history. Only history. Not history that resonated. Just a page of history that would slowly burn away.

Parallel

Today, I have one goal.

While I'll be working on my contest entry on the computer, I'll try to channel the pain and shock and sense of a world shattered into my writing folder. I'll probably not write about 9/11. At least, not directly, but I want to try it out, and see if I can make justice of it.

Maybe out of the emotions will come a gift.

Maybe I can prove I'm not apathetic about 9/11, something I feel little about.

Snapshot

Since I don't remember 9/11, I can only give respect to the affected by the incident. Maybe I'll do that by reading first-hand accounts of what happened. What did it feel like having a force crash into the building you work with? What was the chaos like? Were people evacuating in shock, or were they rushing out, screaming, as smoke and fire threatened to render a mini-city into ruins?

What was it like on the ground?

What was it like being overtaken by the dust rolling from the collapsing skyscraper?

What tales of heroism happened both inside and outside, all around the story, both engraved into history, or forever forgotten?

What happened during that snapshot? 

The crawling hour?

The hour where thousands died in one place?

The hour that caused a shockwave that numbed a nation?

The hour that knocked politics onto another road?

An hour.

That could be repeated?

And we wouldn't expect it?

...

It's a shame that my children might know 9/11 like I know about Princess Diana.

And what I know about Princess Diana? That she died in a car crash. That people loved her.

And now she's history.

Will 9/11 just be history in the next twenty years?

Do you have anything to share today concerning 9/11? Have you written a blog post on 9/11 you want to share in the comments? Are you in my shoes, and not remember 9/11, or do you remember 9/11 very clearly?

By the way, here's a random song.



Does Graceling Send an Anti-Feminity Message? Depends.

The other eye is green.
Here's another opinion that's not 100% mine,  but in my own words.

A popular book swimming in mainstream YA is Graceling, which I have occasionally seen mentioned alongside . In its simplest form, it's a story about a girl "Graced" with the magical ability to kill. As in, a strong ability. Her greedy uncle uses her as an assassin, although she's unhappy enough to form a secret organization to house more positive activities. Naturally, she feels trapped (which is a huge theme in YA. For example, the Sleeping Beauty retelling A Kiss in Time). One day, however, she rescues an old man captured in the name of a cover-up and meets a prince Graced in fighting...

It's a romance, of course. But a very fantastical one. I have seen many people express how the protagonist, Katsa, is a strong female character. She can handle herself pretty much...

...but in one or two places, I have heard that Katsa is an unhealthy case of anti-feminity.

Weekly Round-up: 9/7/12

Monday:

Wednesday:

Thursday:

I'm Writing a Short Story! [Writer's Update]

Okay, I'm putting it out there. I'm creating accountability. I'm giving you guys the right to bug me until I reach my goal.

I'm entering this contest, hosted by Joe Bunting of the Write Practice. Yes, I know he has been on my blog a lot lately, but he's the main reason why I'm even writing at the moment, with his prompts and "Let's Write a Short Story!"

 The rough draft for my first entry is almost done.

All I need to do is to get myself to actually type a story.


Should Writers Be Political?

Disclaimer: I am NOT talking sides. I'm discussing this topic from a non-partisan perspective.

https://twitter.com/ChuckWendig/status/237308768113803264

Let's be frank: Chuck was addressing the Todd Akin incident. That was messy.

It's one of those situations that pretty much everyone sided against him, with Republicans calling him to step down and Democrats shaking their heads vigorously. Women and rape victims were offended and everyone else who didn't believe the "legitimate rape" comment knew what he said was really, really wrong. That one comment, a reflection of his old opinions, will haunt his career for a long, long time.

Yet, it's easy to make a position in this.

The problem is when you get into more political issues.

Why Dystopians Are So Popular

Writers and storytellers have been making statements since the beginning of words. Maybe one clever tribesman made a yarn saying "Go west! Hot woman there!"

Throughout history, epic poems and minstrel songs made commentary on the state of the times. Kings are ridiculed by jesters. Foreigners were warped into monstrous savages. 

Many revolutionary art movements challenged the status quo. Many message-charged works resulted in thousands of deaths.

And then there are dystopians like 1984, satires like Animal Farm, and YA like The Hunger Games.

In the mainstream, dystopians are among the most politically-charged works. My former librarian said such books were so popular because "you guys like reading stories about how the adults screwed the world over". There's that implication, even if it's not a strong one. It's a part of the appeal.

On the other hand, very few, if any, are written to be partisan or to take a radical position. Most are stories first. Which is valid.

On the other hand, how about out of the stories?

The Strong Division

Stephan Colbert sewing a flag with Republican and Democrat symbols.
Is he worth checking out?
Politics, after religion and music, is the hot-button of the Internet. Press it, and rationality makes for the hills. Maybe not at first, but an extended discussion on a forum eventually have some nasty detours. Or even a conversation in person. This is from experience.

As a result, we writer bloggers keep away from the subject. It's not our job to talk politics. It's our job to teach writing, or talk about writing, or talk about books, or talk about publishing, and then publish our books to entertain and make our readers think.

Often enough, there's no reason to bring up politics, because we're often not talking about that kind of thinking.

The Stand

But in the end, authors are authority figures. One blog post, and they can sway the opinion of the audience. Roni Loren demonstrated that, getting many bloggers to stop using copyrighted pictures. Many other bloggers have also called their audience to action. That's power.

Question is: Should authors use their influence to do what they think is right politically?


Three Cases

My short answer? Rarely.

It's okay to be political with your group of friends, or even on Twitter/Facebook/whatever every once or a while, or even make throwaway references if it's apart of your blogging voice (which is probably something Chuck does).

But you shouldn't try to sway people toward your politics if you have a writing blog. It's irrelevant, and you'll most likely lose more than gain.

 My long answer?

  • If you're a political writer.
  • If the political issue in question affects all writers.
  • If you're willing to throw it all away.

Let me explain.

Political

If your writing is partisan, you don't have to worry that much about the other side. Most of your audience is on your side, and those not are not going to read your writing anyways. However, this only applies to a few of us.

An Issue for All Writers

If it's an issue that will affect the writing world in a major way, it's worth talking about. 

For example, SOPA. Yeah, it's political, but if it was passed, we all would be screwed. We had to be talking about it, to inform other people about it, in order to prevent a major breach in freedom of expression.

You can also throw in the Todd Akin incident in, even though that's a non-writing issue.

Take the Stand

This is Chuck's point. Sometimes, doing the right thing is messy.

For example, civil rights in the 1960's. Would you stand for it if it means losing some of your friends or readers? Most of us would say yes. But it's a risk for a strong issue.

At the moment, there are very few things we really, really have to make a strong stand for. However, if another bill at SOPA-level is passing through Congress, one that would screw your rights or life over big time, take the stand. Take it. Sometimes, your writing career goes second and it worth the risks.

If your family members will be hurt, take the stand.

If you will lose your house, take the stand.

If you will lose the right to marry who you love, take the stand.

Some people might not like it, and I might unfollow you if you take a strong stand I don't like, but sometimes we have to be political.

Conclusion

Note that I'm talking about cases which you're speaking directly to your readers via your blog or through an interview. It's iffier when you're on Twitter or at a writer's forum (like me), but there's a big difference between mentioning your political beliefs, and trying to convince people to side with you on a political issue.

But every once in a while, as long as your civil about it, it's worth being political.

YOUR TURN: What's your opinion on writers expressing their political beliefs?

PS: By the way, I lifted a lot of the restrictions on the giveaway! Now you don't have to be a member of my email list in order to enter.

a Rafflecopter giveaway