My best friend and fellow writer, Cy, sent me a link to an article in the current Atlantic about why writers are infamous procrastinators. Read it here and tell me what you think. And don’t forget to include the reasons you procrastinate in your comment. Personally, it took a relative taking me aside and disabusing me of the notion that talent is the source of success (or even deserves any praise). But my current biggest barrier to writing is poor time management. I tend to pick distractions or less important writing tasks over the more serious ones.
You might have suspected trolls are crazy…it turns out they are.
I just had to share this brief but fascinating article about a study that demonstrated internet trolls are in fact sadists. Check it out here.
Take 2 Books and Call Me in the Morning: British docs prescribe books for patients
Newspapers are reporting that doctors in the United Kingdom will be prescribing self-help and health books as reading material for those suffering from a variety of mild-to-moderate mental ailments, such as mild depression, anxiety and panic attacks. The CEO of the British charity the Reading Agency, Miranda McKearney, explained in an article in The Guardian, “There is a growing evidence base that shows that self-help reading can help people with certain mental health conditions to get better.”
Wales has already started the recommended reading program, with England scheduled to start in a few months. Continue reading
My latest obsession: comparing the numbers of comments to the numbers of “likes”
Okay, I’ll admit it: there are better ways to spend my time. But for some reason, I have recently become obsessed with the following question:
Why do some articles get many “likes,” but few comments, and some articles get many comments, but few “likes?”
Until recently, I never paid attention to the social network shares on my articles. I paid attention to the comments so I could monitor and respond to them, but I didn’t watch how many people “liked” my article, tweeted about it, or whatever. I guess something happened when I finally joined FB myself.
First, I found myself comparing the rates of “likes” vs. comments on my Tablet articles, then I noticed the same discrepancies on other people’s articles.
I get that it’s easier to “like” than to write a whole comment. I do. Also, “likes” get shared with other people readers think will enjoy or appreciate the article. And that explains why some articles (the most recent one I wrote, for example) have a “likes” to comment ratio that far favors the “likes.”
Do more comments than “likes” signal dislike?
What I don’t get are the stories that move in the opposite direction (including one of my other articles). What makes someone comment, but not “like”? Because they’re mad at me? Because something I said incensed them? Is that it?
Do you have any insight on this issue (as a reader, writer, marketer, or publisher)? Please share it in the comments below.
Can teenagers really save the world? Musings on middle grade and YA lit
I’m completely behind both writing and housework this week due to a bout of strep throat (thankfully, on the mend now due to penicillin). This was the second time I’ve been laid up for several days since Sukkos, so it was pretty much a drag, and I really need to try to wrap up at least one story this week. However, I just feel the need to share this with my readers.
While lying in bed trying very hard not to swallow (it just hurt too much), I read a slew of middle grade and YA novels. Now, I know that tween and teen novels tend to share certain characteristics, and that many of these meet the psychological needs of tweens and teens. But as a once-but-no-longer teen, a particular trait rubbed me the wrong way. Continue reading
What? No love triangle? How books for Jewish teens fit into current YA trends
If you ask observant Jewish teens here in the U.S. whether they overall prefer Jewish books or secular ones, most of them will tell you secular books (trust me, I write for teens, so I’ve asked). Sad, but true.
Why most Orthodox teens prefer secular books
Interestingly, some of these teens will tell you that they wish there were more Jewish books for teens that suited them. Others will tell you they don’t like either Jewish or secular novels — the former don’t engage them, and latter conflict with their religious beliefs.
Thursday, I caught an excellent article on CNN about the history of YA novels in the U.S. You can read it here. There was little that was news to me in the article, but it did make me think about something that’s troubled me for a while — namely why so many Jewish teens are enthralled by secular books that don’t necessarily reflect the values of their families.
Let’s consider why secular YA books are currently selling like hotcakes. Continue reading