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Diabolical Plots is a Sci-fi/Fantasy zine that covers virtually every media related to the genre from books to movies to video games. This site also features regular content related to the craft of writing. Take a look around!

22 May 2009 ~ 0 Comments

The Runelords by David Farland

runelordsAnyway, since I started writing 2 years ago, I haven’t come across a single novel I enjoyed. I’d been starting to think that by learning to pick apart my own stories critically that I’d rendered myself unable to enjoy other people’s novels. So I was very glad to realize that I was thoroughly enjoying this one.

12 May 2009 ~ 0 Comments

“Deep Moves” by William Highsmith

Abyss and Apex has a story I particularly liked this month by William Highsmith. I tried to give this one a critique before it was published, but I enjoyed it so much that I really just enjoyed it the way it is.

29 April 2009 ~ 0 Comments

Article: Submitting to Literary Magazines 101: Professionalism

Interestingly, what Pat Bertram claims are the rules of the submitting to literary violate what is common knowledge for speculative fiction magazines. Listed below I listed the major differences I noticed. “Literary” refers to the comments entered by Vince Gotera (though he may not speak for the entire genre, he speaks as though he does).

26 April 2009 ~ 0 Comments

Revision Methods

Give to First Readers. I give it to a few people whose critiquing opinions I trust. Exactly who I give it to depends on who I’ve been interacting more with lately, who I’ve read stories for (I prefer to trade rather than one-sided critiques) etc… I read the critiques as they roll in and mark comments into the draft document so they’re easy to look at later.

24 April 2009 ~ 0 Comments

The Shining (book) by Stephen King

the_shiningThis story is one of those rare cases where I liked the movie better than the book. Not the original Jack Nicholson movie, but the miniseries starring Steven Weber in the 90s. I’ve yet to see a Nicholson movie I liked (to be fair, I haven’t seen some of his more famous ones like One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest).

20 April 2009 ~ 0 Comments

Sunshine Cleaning

sunshine_cleaningNothing like a good indie film to remind me why I like movies. An outstanding cast, an original premise, and a strong script made Sunshine Cleaning, a comedy-drama, well worth the ticket price.

15 April 2009 ~ 0 Comments

What is “literary”?

I’ve yet to find a widely accepted definition of “literary” as a genre. Glimmer Train classifies themselves as literary, as does Zoetrope (and many others). Whether you like the stories in these magazines is, as with all magazines, a matter of taste.

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14 April 2009 ~ 0 Comments

City of Green

So along these same lines, would people who grew up in the Emerald City be able to see other colors at all? I don’t think they would. What would they see instead? Would they see everything, but shifted into the greenscale? Would non-green things be essentially invisible to them, hiding in giant blindspots? I’m curious.

12 April 2009 ~ 0 Comments

Glimmer Train Winter 2009 & Zoetrope All-Story Winter 2008/2009

glimmer_trainzoetropeI tried to read these with an open mind, I really did. I’ll always be, first and foremost, a speculative fiction fan. Like so many things, this is just a matter of taste. I’ve like many non-speculative books and stories, but nothing quite hits that “sense-of-wonder” button like a good science fiction or fantasy. I didn’t try to compare these literary stories to speculative stories as that wouldn’t have been fair. I wanted to decide if I would just enjoy them on their own, not compare them to some other ideal.

10 April 2009 ~ 1 Comment

Invisible Formatting

Does anybody else hate MS Word’s invisible formatting? Where if you accidentally delete one then suddenly a big chunk of your file goes wonky? Does anyone know if there’s a way to reveal them?