How writing has changed through the ages

Writing in the modern era is very different to writing even fifty years ago. Technology, lifestyle, attitudes, and education have all played an important role.

Writing today ought to be easier, better and faster. But is this really so?

Research…

Enclycolpedia

Not so very long ago if you wanted to research something you…

a) Asked someone older and wiser (and trusted that they were not making the answer up)

b) Went to the library (assuming it was opening time)

c) Dragged out your Encyclopaedia Britannica (if you were lucky enough to have the set—or half the set…)

Research is infinitely easier in the modern world, all courtesy of the internet. For example, the other day I needed to find out how best and practically to carry an unconscious body on a horse—voila! Thus, providing a demonstration of why a writer’s internet history should never be used in a court of law.

Writing tools…

vintage typewriter

As a scrivener fan, I like to think I have embraced the benefits of modern day writing tools. Not so very long ago you were lucky if you had Microsoft Word. Not much help in structure or planning, but at least it can fix some of the typos and grammar, and for many writers it still holds pride of place. Prior to the introduction of computers, you probably used a typewriter! And before that pencil or quill and paper! And before that a hammer and chisel!

Distraction…

Procrastinating

The modern world contains a vast and ever emerging array of distractions. To compensate we deploy a vast and ever emerging array of distraction mitigating techniques! Sometimes our techniques work, and sometimes they don’t…I am pretty sure me writing this blog post is a distraction…and so is you reading it!

Education…

Education

Education is not such a clear cut conclusion for me. In some ways, the modern world with all its spell checkers and text talk jargon has depleted our basic writing skills. But, there is also an amazing array of blogs (except this one, which is in the above ‘distraction’ classification), free education, books, and other material available via the internet, and to a far wider portion of the population.

The time to write…

time to write

If you were a 15th century crofter, the chances are you probably couldn’t read and were far too busy tending to your turnips to dedicate time to writing. Even a hundred years ago the average person worked a 7 day week with little energy or enthusiasm for embracing their creative side. But, for many people in the modern world we have plenty of opportunity to write, although many of us who are not full time writers would definitely still like a lot more 🙂

Attitude…

writing caveman

Whatever the time or place, there have always been storytellers. They just did not necessarily write. I think the concept of the story and the storyteller has been part of human culture for as far back as we have considered ourselves to be human.

Our attitude to writing has changed over the ages though, and I believe we are far more prolific writers now than we have ever been, and that makes me wonder where we will go to next. Perhaps we will simply project our thoughts onto pages, or perhaps writing as we know it now will ultimately disappear.

 

Love Sci-fi and fantasy fiction?

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Divided Serenity is available on all Amazon stores, and free with Kindle Unlimited.

For SF&F Writers: The Endless Parade of Knock-Offs

Notes From The Slush Pile

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So here I am, another reading period long done and just back from my vacation, and I remember it’s been a couple months since I posted anything for you lovely people. Forgive me. The sad truth is that as much as I enjoy reading for Cosmic Roots and Eldritch Shores, nothing really grabbed me this time around. Maybe I’ll just write about why that is and what you who submit stories can do to work on it, okay? Good. I’d like to give my focus this time to one of the most grinding tasks I go through in clearing the Slush Pile, reading through all the damn knock-offs.

So what the hell do I mean by this? It’s pretty simple. Whenever something is really popular, people start writing stuff that’s like that popular thing they enjoy. Tolkien still inspires a few thousand lousy PG fantasy stories a year. Martin…

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Writers, Writing, Editors and Feedback (Link)

A great article for writers. The importance of feedback and editing. And just how long and how much effort it takes to make your draft into a book…

The Book He Wasn’t Supposed to Write

 

Serenity Falling available on Amazon #SCIFI #Bookboost

This time last year, I was on holiday, and finishing the draft of the 2nd and 3rd books in my Divided World Series.

At the time, I had yet to publish any of the series.

It’s been an eventful year, with Book 1 published in December, Book 2 now on pre-order, and Book 3 in the final stages of review before it is ready to go, too.

I often reflect on how much time I spent writing prior to publishing a book…over twenty years. And how easy it would have been to continue dabbling with out direction for another twenty. While I know not all reviews will be positive, I still need to pinch myself when a positive one pops up on Amazon. As a writer your greatest satisfaction comes from the knowledge that someone enjoyed your work.

I am grateful to all the people who offered encouragement (and the occasional threat) to ensure I took that final nervous step with publishing. Both the direct  encouragement from friends and family, and the indirect encouragement from the already published authors whose blogs and articles I read.

If you are yet to publish, I would like to offer you the same encouragement…just do it 🙂

Happy reading and writing everyone 🙂


About Book One – Divided Serenity

 

Long ago, when the ancients colonized the planet named Serenity, they displaced an indigenous population and constructed a dividing force-field wall. But when an earthquake destroys the power to the protective wall, only three people have the skills to repair it—until the first two disappear en route. Now Hannah, as the last expert, must go.  Her journey will take her into a native land engulfed by war between ancient enemies. Along the way, her own perceptions will be changed and she will find herself playing a part in a new rivalry between powerful forces in Shadowland determined at bringing down Aterra and that threaten to rip Shadowland apart.

Available to buy on all Amazon stores [Amazon US] [Amazon UK]

About Book Two – Serenity Falling 

With the power back and The Wall operational, the land of Aterra is once more safe from the savage armies that dwell in Shadowland. There is just one problem…the people of Aterra have no way of knowing that their protective wall is repaired, and their President, Bill Bremmer, is determined to exploit their ignorance and fear to pursue an agenda all his own, even if it means war. Once again finding herself in the middle of forces beyond her control, and with enemies and deception on all sides, Hannah tries desperately to save her home, and to discern the truth about those around her.

Available on all Amazon stores, from 21st August [Amazon US] [Amazon UK]

AMAZON REVIEW
“Game of Thrones + High Tech = The Best of Both!”

For the latest news on Book Two, you can subscribe to my newsletter [HERE] or follow my author site G.L.Cromarty [www.GLCromarty.com]

For SF&F Writers: Building a Sense of Wonder

Notes From The Slush Pile

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So the new submission period for Cosmic Roots and Eldritch Shores is about to begin, and a substantial slush pile no doubt awaits. In my temporary role as Editorial Assistant, I no longer just read through stories and offer basic feedback to senior Editors on every aspect that pops into my head. Mainly, I send rejection notices. In trying to be as helpful and constructive as possible with these, I’ve noticed a trend I’d like to harp on, and that’s the tendency to treat the fantastic as mundane in the many worlds of speculative fiction.

Maybe it’s a sign of the age of the genres. As a writer and editor, I’ll be the first to admit that coming up with something truly breathtaking and original is getting harder. There is just such a massive volume of work out there for consideration and consumption that ideas and plots which might once…

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