Friday, June 1, 2018

What I read . . .

Like anyone else with a computer and an Internet connection, I have email. My Inbox welcomes me every morning with missives that are mostly spam, but I receive a few that I look forward to and enjoy. These sites are varied, and mostly but not all about writing and publishing.

Literary Hub has a weekly newsletter that lists about a dozen curated articles of interest to writers and readers, along with interesting historical information about figures in the literary world. A recent issue included a link to a piece in the Guardian that discussed a letter by John le Carre in which he described Tony Blair as "one bad Scottish piglet."

This site also produces CrimeReads, which offers a variety of articles, for example, on book covers, prisoners performing Steinbeck's Of Mice and Men at Sing Sing Prison, and Spanish noir.

A favorite blog is The Graveyard Shift, by Lee Lofland (, which covers topics related to crime and law enforcement, with the interest of writers in mind.

Not everything I read is directly related to crime fiction or writing. One of my favorite newsletters comes from Nautilus, an online journal about science. The editors choose a theme and explore it from different perspectives over one or more issues, culling articles from many sources.  Current articles explored the problems besetting scientists in finding new antibiotics, whether or not suicide bombings are driven by ideology, and whether or not you can overdose on happiness. These are light-hearted titles for serious, thoughtful analyses.

As a writer I receive numerous newsletters about writing and publishing, most of which I ignore. The few that I scan for interesting insights or information are The Creative Penn (, on writing, self-publishing, and marketing, among other topics; The Passive Voice (, by a lawyer who culls articles from various sources on aspects of writing and publishing of interest from a legal perspective; and the Boston Review (, which describes itself as a political and literary forum.

One of my favorites is, which provides a new word every day (except weekends), with pronunciation, meaning, etymology, and usage. There is also a quote, for the thought for the day. The word for today, as I write, is metanoia (go look it up).

To help with general issues in my Anita Ray stories I read The Hindu Blog (, which covers topics related to the Hindu calendar, practices, principles, and the like.

Another newsletter gets me into the appropriate frame of mind for writing the new Pioneer Valley series featuring Felicity O'Brien, the newsletter for the National Farmers Union ( This one covers topics related to farming, such as crop insurance, changes in federal policies, environmental concerns, fact sheets, new policy initiatives, rail regulation, food waste, and coping with climate change.

You probably have your own list of reliable sources for reading entertainment and information, and I'm ready to admit I probably wouldn't read these if I had to trek to the library to find the hard copy. 

Coming in the early fall, with more farming information, is Below the Tree Line, from Midnight Ink. Until then you can find me and my work here:


Kevin R. Tipple said...

Nope. The cited deals are not at all e-magazines. Beyond that fact, I don't get more e-magazines than I can read as they just get stored and eventually read.

Newsletters are a different thing and for the most part I don't read them anymore. I unsubscribed to most directly and a few more went by the wayside with the recent privacy law stuff from Europe that the newsletter folks and others had to worry about and needed recipients to resubscribe. Letting those go dropped my email inflow significantly.

Susan Oleksiw said...

Thanks for the clarification, Kevin.

Jacqueline Seewald said...


Thanks for the information. Some of these sites look very interesting and might prove helpful to me and other writers.

Susan Oleksiw said...

Jacquie, I'm the curious sort and I enjoy reading other people's opinion on different topics. The Internet is a buffet of ideas.

Kevin R. Tipple said...

I do agree with Jacqueline on her point. I still do get most of these as well.

Pamela S Thibodeaux said...

Great list!
Thanks for sharing

Kevin R. Tipple said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Kevin R. Tipple said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Susan Oleksiw said...

Thanks, Kevin. I don't get notices from AE, so I just found this. I've deleted the comment, and I'll block her also.

Kevin R. Tipple said...

Glad to help. I deleted my two comments so that they do not clutter things up.