Harry Connolly: February 2015 Archives

Do you guys follow Every Frame A Painting, on YouTube and Vimeo?

Film editor Tony Zhou makes short video essays examining individual directors and individual techniques, and for someone like me who loves movies (that most 20th Century of art forms), it's incredibly instructive to watch.

I'm going to embed his video about lateral tracking shots, mainly because he re-edits a certain scene to show the real power of this technique. It's only six and a half minutes: here you go:

If that iframe doesn't work, this is the direct link.

His other videos are amazing. The one about Edgar Wright made clear to me why I'm such a fan of his Wright's work, and why I've pretty much stopped watching Hollywood comedies. The "Bayhem" video--even if you don't like Michael Bay--shows what he's doing in a technical sense to achieve that Michael Bay look that audiences love. Recommended.

Watching them, I was struck by the need for something like this in prose, a way to closely examine word choice and sentence structure so that these creative choices can be better understood by readers and writers everywhere. There was some of that in one of the only helpful books about writing I've ever read--Stein on Writing, by Sol Stein--but there's always more to be done.

So I'm nominating myself to do it, and I'm going to make the attempt here at antipope, where it's likely to be seen by a lot of people. With luck, others with more expertise will try their hand at it and we'll see more nuanced examinations elsewhere.

Most everyone reading this who knows me (and I figure there might be a few of you) recognizes me as the author of a failed urban fantasy series, Twenty Palaces. The blog post I wrote about my failure to find an audience for those books (and the reasons why) continues to be the most popular post on my site, almost three and a half years after I wrote it.

I hate it. I hate being defined by my response to the worst failure of my life.

Last year, after it became clear that no NY publisher was going to pick up my new epic fantasy trilogy (another failure!) I put together a Kickstarter campaign to crowdfund the editing and other publishing costs of the books. (Don't worry, I'm not asking for pledges. The campaign ended long ago.) I set the goal at $10,000; I raised a little over $50,000.

A big success, right? Absolutely. At the time I write this, I'm still ranked ninth on the list of "Most Funded" Kickstarter campaigns in the Fiction category. Still, that post (which I'm not linking for obvious reasons) about my cancelled series is still my most popular.

But! in the spirit of moving forward, I thought I would share some of the lessons I learned in putting together a successful crowd-funding campaign. Maybe you have thought about a crowd-funding project of your own. Maybe Charlie will want to Kickstart something someday, and antipope readers would like tips on how best to help. Maybe what I learned re: that campaign are applicable elsewhere.



About this Archive

This page is an archive of recent entries written by Harry Connolly in February 2015.

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