Jennifer Brozek | May 2012

Winning Author

by Jennifer Brozek 28. May 2012 13:05

I love it when stories from my anthologies win awards. It validates me as an editor.

I recieved an email today from Pete Kempshall. He had good news. His story, "Someone Else to Play With" from my anthology Beauty Has Her Way (Dark Quest Books 2011), just made it into the Year's Best Australian Fantasy and Horror 2011 book.

Woot! That's awesome. And something else to add to my Awards page.

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Bubble and Squeek

by Jennifer Brozek 28. May 2012 13:00

Just a reminder, this is a link to my Origins convention schedule.

Grants Pass review by Felicia Dowker. It is always nice to get one of these unexpectedly. I love the fact that we are still receiving reviews years after publication. 

Industry Talk review by the “Shroud of the Ancients” Avocations website. The first review for this book in the wild. I’m pleased with it. I should be. It’s a 9/10 review.

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Origins Schedule

by Jennifer Brozek 27. May 2012 18:38

 

Here is my Origins schedule. If I’m not in one of these panels, I’m in The Library at my table in Exhibit Hall C (PDF), top left corner near concessions. As Cherie Priest likes to say, there is a “No Shyness” zone around me. Come up and say Hello! I’m happy to chat while I sell books. I’m bribable—take me out to lunch or for a drink and I’ll talk your ear off.

 

THURSDAY

3 p.m. Flash Your Fiction: In how few words can you tell a story? Flash fiction has been gaining in popularity, but it’s not an easy art form. Brevity is tough to tackle, but if you can master it, there are markets for your scant words. Learn the secret to “Kissing Your Fiction.” KISS . . . keep it short, sister. Then consider entering our flash fiction contests Friday and Saturday.

Donald J. Bingle, Jennifer Brozek, Kelly Swails

 

4 p.m. Writing For Games: Writing opportunities about in the game industry for persistent and talented freelancers. Our panelists found success writing for various game companies, and they provide helpful hints for landing work amid the dice and battlemaps.

Jennifer Brozek

 

FRIDAY

3 p.m. The Care and Feeding of Your Editor: Award-winning editor Jennifer Brozek has published dozens of authors in her many anthologies. She explains what it takes to get an editor’s attention and respect, offering suggestions that will move your submissions higher in the slush pile and closer to publication.

Jennifer Brozek

 

4 p.m. Write What You Don’t Know: We remember English teachers lecturing: “Write what you know.” Well, we think you ought to write what you don’t know. How else can you write about space travel and alternate history and fire-breathing dragons and vampire detectives? We’ll discuss how a little research and common sense can give you just enough background to really write what you don’t know.

R.T. Kaelin, Jennifer Brozek, Bryan Young

 

6 p.m. Reading: Jennifer Brozek: Award-winning editor Jennifer Brozek offers up a serving of one of her favorite fantasy tales.

Jennifer Brozek

 

SATURDAY

10 a.m. Slaying Writer’s Block: There’s debate whether there is such a beast as writer’s block. We’ll not argue that point here. Rather, we’ll show you what you can do to knock down the barriers that are keeping you from typing away at your keyboard. Writer’s block . . . or whatever you want to label it . . . we’ve faced it and beat it to a bloody pulp.

Aaron Allston, Jennifer Brozek, Bryan Young

 

11 a.m. Practice Makes Perfect: How can you tell if you’re getting better as a writer? How can you judge your progress? And what does it take to get to that next level of expertise? We’ll talk about benchmarks, writer’s groups, and how to analyze your fiction. You have to grow as a writer to compete in the marketplace; we’ll teach you how to measure your skills and to improve them.

Kelly Swails, Jennifer Brozek, Brad Beaulieu, R.T. Kaelin

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Gruntz

by Jennifer Brozek 21. May 2012 11:27

I’ve been doing this social networking thing on Twitter, Facebook, Google+, and Livejournal for a while. I consider all of it to be an investment in my career. There is nothing more annoying about looking up an author or editor and finding nothing about them. Right or wrong, it makes me think that they either aren’t very good at the business or marketing aspects of being in the publishing industry.

That said, I always try to temper my business side with remaining a real person. I chat with people. Talk about stuff that isn’t work. Or talk about where I am in what I’m doing—the easy parts, the hard parts. I do like to be social.  Some of the social stuff is play and I do like to play. I think I’m pretty successful at balancing the two.

About a week ago, after talking about work I’m doing on the Battletech web series, a stranger on twitter pinged and asked if I was open for a gig. I get this question a lot and my answer is always: “It depends on my schedule, the subject matter, and the pay rate.”  Then we shifted to email for the rest of the conversation.

Short story still short, Robin Fitton has hired me to work on the fiction part of Gruntz. “Gruntz is a dedicated 15mm fast play wargame designed for skirmish level play with between 10 to 40 figures per side using combined arms (squads, support vehicles, tanks, VTOL's and artillery).”

I’m excited about this because I get to make up a lot of canon information about the Gruntz universe. Every faction will have signature leaders, houses/groups/etc.  With 11-12 stories to come up with, I’m still deciding on how this will happen. But believe me, there will be a variety. I’ve got permission to go wild and nothing is off limits.

I love jobs like this.

I also love getting jobs like this because I’m just being me on Twitter.

As an aside, there is an Indiegogo fundraiser for an Gruntz Army Builder App that is already funded and is into stretch goals.

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Human for a Day SFRevu

by Jennifer Brozek 17. May 2012 09:49

http://www.sfrevu.com/php/Review-id.php?id=12890

 

"...Greenberg and Brozek have put together a nice balanced mix of happy, sad, funny and bittersweet stories. Also, unlike many themed anthologies, in Human For A Day, the theme of the title is consistently carried out in all sixteen stories. For readers who enjoyed the stories and want to read more by authors with whom they may previously have been unfamiliar, the anthology helpfully includes contributor bios that reference websites and other stories and books by the authors. Human For A Day is definitely worth reading. Highly recommended."

 

Ian Tregellis, Seanan McGuire, Laura Resnick, Jody Lynn Nye, and Tanith Lee called out.

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What I Didn’t Expect

by Jennifer Brozek 15. May 2012 15:14

I’ve been a fulltime freelancer for over five years now and the business of freelancing still surprises me. I think one of the biggest surprises is how many publishers—RPG or fiction—have asked me to supply them with a contract for a writing gig.  The conversation usually goes something like…

“We have this work we want you to do.”

“What’s the details?”

“Due date, word count, pay rate.”

“All of that is doable. I’m in.”

“Alrighty, send over your standard freelancer contract.”  (Or)  “Do you have a standard contract you’d like us to use?” (Or) “We don’t have a standard contract. What details would you like in yours?”


All of these have happened to me. It was shocking the first time a publisher asked me to provide them with the contract. I had no idea what to do. I ended up telling them, in my most professional-please-don’t-think-of-me-as-a-hack email voice, that I “preferred to start with the contract the publisher usually used and we would modify it from there.”

I chickened out in other words.  And we did work with their contract and modified it and everyone lived happily ever after.

However, I suddenly realized that I needed to create my own boilerplate contracts. Ones that would be legally binding. Ones that wouldn’t screw me or the publisher.  I ended up going to back to the contracts I already had and modified them. It’s surprising the number of contracts I now have to keep track of.

As an Author:
•    RPG – set number of fiction words for a project
•    RPG – RPG book as author
•    Fiction – short story in an anthology
•    Fiction – short story for the web

As an Editor:
•    Anthology – buying a short story for an anthology
•    Anthology – buying a reprint story for an anthology
•    Anthology – selling an anthology to a publisher
•    Anthology – commissioning art for the book cover
•    Anthology – licensing art for the book cover
•    Webzine – buying a short story for web
•    Editing – Novel consulting
•    Editing – Short story editing

That’s a lot contracts right there that I’ve had to create specific to me and make sure were fair, legal, and appropriate.

But wait, there’s more.  Invoices are a type of contract between the freelancer and the person who hired them. It used to be that my employer would tell me how to log my hours and get paid. As a freelancer, you frequently provide your own invoices. This means they need to be clear, concise, and specific to the project so you don’t lose track of who has paid you and who hasn’t.

If you plan to freelance at all, you need to be prepared to provide your own contracts. You need to make certain they are legal and appropriate. Documentation is part of a freelancer’s world. I knew this from the start. I just didn’t know that I would be the one providing the contracts as well.

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INDUSTRY TALK PRESS RELEASE MAY 2012

by Jennifer Brozek 10. May 2012 11:41

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

INDUSTRY TALK PRESS RELEASE MAY 2012

Industry Talk; Your guide to breaking into games, editing anthologies and managing your career

Release Date: May 10, 2012.

“Want to write for games? Want to navigate the dark labyrinths and endless mazes of freelancing? Let Brozek be your guide.”
 – Chuck  Wendig, author of Blackbirds and 500 Ways to be a Better Writer


Apocalypse Ink Productions brings you INDUSTRY TALK, by award-winning editor and veteran freelancer Jennifer Brozek, a collection of her previously published columns Dice and Deadlines and The Making of an Anthology. This insider’s guide for freelance game writers and editors contains brand-new content addressing frequently asked questions like "How to pitch an anthology", and includes advice on managing a freelance career.


“If you’re going to make that leap, though, and come over to the freelance side to join us, don’t go blind. Do your research. Ask questions. Read this book.”
– Matt Forbeck, author of Amortals and Vegas Knights


Available: May 10th, 2012

Amazon Kindle: http://www.amazon.com/Industry-Talk-Insiders-Anthologies-ebook/dp/B0081WAGEE/

Drive Thru Fiction: http://www.drivethrufiction.com/product/101746/Industry-Talk%3A-An-Insider%27s-Look-at-Writing-RPGs-and-Editing-Anthologies

Nook and ePub forthcoming.

For more information, please contact: Apocalypse.ink.productions@gmail.com

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Newest book cover

by Jennifer Brozek 3. May 2012 11:23

Cover design by Ivan Ewert

Industry Talk is a collection of two previously published columns by Jennifer Brozek, Dice & Deadlines and The Making of an Anthology. The collection also contains brand-new content including step-by-step instructions on how to pitch an anthology and advice on managing a freelance career.

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Jennifer Brozek: Writerholic

Jennifer Brozek is a Hugo Award nominated editor and a Bram Stoker nominated author. Winner of the Australian Shadows Award for best edited publication, Jennifer has edited fifteen anthologies with more on the way, including the acclaimed Chicks Dig Gaming and Shattered Shields anthologies. Author of Apocalypse Girl Dreaming, Industry Talk, the Karen Wilson Chronicles, and the acclaimed Melissa Allen series, she has more than sixty-five published short stories, and is the Creative Director of Apocalypse Ink Productions.

Jennifer is a freelance author for numerous RPG companies. Winner of the Scribe, Origins, and ENnie awards, her contributions to RPG sourcebooks include Dragonlance, Colonial Gothic, Shadowrun, Serenity, Savage Worlds, and White Wolf SAS. Jennifer is the author of the YA Battletech novel, The Nellus Academy Incident, and the Shadowrun novella, Doc Wagon 19. She has also written for the AAA MMO Aion and the award winning videogame, Shadowrun Returns.

When she is not writing her heart out, she is gallivanting around the Pacific Northwest in its wonderfully mercurial weather. Jennifer is a Director-at-Large of SFWA, and an active member HWA and IAMTW. Follow her on Twitter at @JenniferBrozek.