What's the story behind this blog?

In July, 2005, then-active Miss Snark issued the first invitation to her hapless readers: Send me your first page!

She said it in passing, sort of. Nobody seemed to be responding.

So I took it upon myself to send the illustrious Miss Snark an email that read, "OK, I'll bite." And, amidst great trembling and fear, I sent her the first page of my current WIP.

Miss Snark may have been caught a bit off guard by my email. She wrote back asking if it was okay to post my page and her comments on the blog.

Being a silly, novice writer, I said it would be fine if she changed the names of the characters. (Did I think somebody was going to steal them?) She agreed, and chose the most ridiculous character names I'd ever read.

She then proceeded to tear my writing to gentle shreds.

At first, it stung ("How dare she!"). Then it brought a dull sense of "I guess my writing sucks."

But then something even better happened. I realized that Miss Snark's comments were dead on. I ended up doing some of the best rewriting I'd ever done.

Ultimately, the work ended up "on the shelf" bearing the label, "Practice Novel." But you know what? My work has never been the same.

And here's the original post to prove I haven't hallucinated the whole thing: C-rap Rations For The Hippest of Snarklings, Part 1".

And now you know.

What are the rules of engagement?

This is an amazing and supportive community of writers.  In order to keep it that way, there are a few basic guidelines:
  • Please: No snarkies. When you leave comments -- especially comments about other people's writing -- be nice. A little tact goes a long way.
  • No spam. You will be annihilated without warning.
  • No disgusting language. We all have our limits.
  • "Disgusting," by the way, is subject to my opinion as the author of this blog.
  • When it comes to posting your submissions for critiques and contests, please understand that any language in your excerpt that I deem "unacceptable" for a PG-13 audience will be edited with ***'s. 
  • I will not accept submissions for erotica or any excerpt I feel is inappropriate for a PG-13 audience (either violence or sexual content).  I have had visitors as young as 13 and I strive to keep this environment safe for the younger aspiring authors among us.  Please respect this.
  • And please don't post the emails, phone numbers, or other personal information of agents or editors. They already receive a plentiful amount of unwanted correspondence; let's not encourage it here.

Oh, one more thing. Suggestions are good! Don't hesitate to send yours to facelesswords (at) gmail.com.