Literature and capitalism, the trouble with romances, yet more gender bias in SFF, good writing advice and some dentistry, too, for good measure

I had to take my Dad to the dentist today and pick him up again. He is getting implants, which were inserted under general anaesthesia, so he couldn’t drive. He was pretty woozy afterwards – I very much had to drag him to the car. After I dropped my Dad off, I went to the supermarket and bought several cans of soup for him, so he has something to eat. I felt very self-conscious to buy nothing but canned coup, because I usually don’t buy a lot of prepared ready-meal type foods (neither do my parents, which was why I had to buy canned soup – since there was only one can or so at home for emergencies) let alone nothing but canned soup.

And now some links, all writing and literature related:

Ignore the conservative, pro-business rhetoric and this article at National Affairs, a magazine that is probably exactly what it sounds like, provides a great syllabus for a hypothetical university literature class on how business and capitalism are reflected in American literature.

By the way, my first reaction to Babbitt and Main Street by Sinclair Lewis was “Wow, this is a frighteningly accurate portrayal of a certain segment of US society.” And Lewis hadn’t even seen McMansions and manufactured suburbs like Levittown yet. After reading that, I was no longer surprised that Lewis has been awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature. Nor was I surprised that many Americans consider him an unworthy winner today.

At All About Romance, there is an interesting discussion about whether romance is a formula genre and how restrictive genre requirements such as the HEA (happily ever after for non-romance readers) are.

On a related note, Shanna Swendson discusses her issues with several recent category romances. Her issue has nothing to do with the HEA ending, but with contrived conflict and particularly the black moment requirement.

At the Night Bazaar, Courtney Schafer tackles the neverending issue of gender biases in SF and (epic) fantasy.

Chuck Wendig discusses 25 things writers should know about theme and tackles the Get a Real Job advice as well as the issue of self-doubt in writers in his inimitable fashion.

And finally some sad news: Australian fantasy writer Sara Douglass died of cancer aged 54.

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