Award-winning author
Unusual times, remarkable places

The "Standard of Ur" from ancient Mesopotamia

The "Standard of Ur" from ancient Mesopotamia

12 January 2011

Books read in 2010: stats

I didn't read many books this year compared with the years since I started keeping track of what I read.

Here's how the stats break down:

• I read 44 [wince] books total.

• 11 books (25%) were written by people I know.

• 5 books (14%) had something to do with Turkey.

• 13 books (30%) were first books (to my knowledge).

• 7 books (16%) were recommended by friends.

• 4 books (9%) were self-published.

• 10 books (23%)were published by micro- and small presses.

• 31 books were fiction (70%).

• 13 books were nonfiction (30%).

• Of the 31 fiction books,
—20 were fantasy, of which 7 were short story collections.
—5 were romances
—2 were classics
—1 was a mystery
—1 was a Western
—1 was literary fiction
—1 was suspense

• Of the 13 nonfiction books,
—4 were on Oriental rugs
—2 were self-help
—2 were on writing
—1 was a memoir
—1 was on Ottoman music
—1 was on "hobbits" (Homo floresiensis)

• I read 5 books (11%) on Kindle and the rest on paper.

I hope your reading year turned out more prolific than mine. I always hear that to be a writer, one must read, read, read. And I would like to read, read, read because it's one of my favorite things to do. But where to find the time without getting even more unhealthily sleep deprived than I already am?

How was 2010 for your reading? And do you have any advice for carving out time from writing and chores for pleasure and work-related reading?

05 January 2011

Recent writing news

My fantasy Christmas flash story "Global Warming" was published a couple of days ago at the online magazine 10Flash. You can read it for free here.

And as long as you're at 10Flash, why not check out Robin Graves' flash story, "Unlimited Delta," which can be found here. Robin is in my Orange County, California, critique group, and this is his first published story. Yay, Robin!


The blog The Embraced: Scribal Love published an interview with me this week. You can find it here.


Clare Dargin of The Embraced: Scribal Love gave me a "Versatile Blogger" award, which comes with some rules:

1. Share 7 things about yourself

2. Pass The Award to 15 bloggers recently discovered (or however many you can manage).

3. Notify the blogger recipients.

4. Link The blogger who gave the award.

Thank you, Clare!

Here are seven things about me, most of which I've not mentioned online before:

  1. My mother never let me babysit; she thought the house could burn down around me and I wouldn't notice because I would be engrossed in a book.
  2. Of the people whom I consider my ten closest friends, the youngest is 24 and the oldest is in her 80s.
  3. If I could be any animal I chose, my first choice would be some kind of hawk. My second choice would be a black bear.
  4. I spend on average ten to fifteen minutes a day looking for things I've misplaced.
  5. I spend four hours a week in bellydance classes. That's fewer hours than my classmates spend, so I'm close to the worse dancer in all those classes.
  6. The Riverside (California) Art Museum has a picture of one of my tattoos on display.

My time is short this week, so I'll post my own nominations for the "Versatile Blogger" award another week.


I am eligible this year and next for the John W. Campbell Award for Best New Writer. If you are eligible to vote for a Hugo, you are eligible to nominate people and vote for finalists for the Campbell Award. (Last year, I believe, you could vote for your five favorite new writers and later vote for one finalist.)

My name (and associated page) is not up at the Campbell Award Website yet, but it should be soon. I would greatly appreciate your vote if you believe I am among the best of the eligible new writers.

Also, if you are an SFWA member, please consider nominating "The Hunt" for the Nebula in the novelette category. (You may nominate as many as five works in each category.) You can read the story in the SFWA Member Fiction area of the SFWA discussion forum (here). If you were a Jim Baen's Universe subscriber, you may be able to log in and see the story in the February 2010 issue. (The magazine has gone under, and many of the Webpages have been dismantled.)


Coming soon:

* next week: 2010 reading stats
* soon: the bloggers I nominate for the Versatile Blogger award
* author interviews with Kimberly Todd Wade and Valerie Frankel