I wanted to share a few things with you today.
First of all, check out our new Publications tab. It's a place where we want to promote our readers' published works - short stories, poetry, self-published novels, traditionally published novels, fiction, non-fiction, going-to-be-published soon, etc. If you're not on this list and you want to be, let us know by leaving a comment or emailing us. Occasionally we'll highlight an author in a regular post.
Second, if you haven't heard of our new Notes from Underground contest, check it out! We've already received a few entries, and I'm excited.
Third, I read a post yesterday that I think you should read. Maureen Johnson writes great blog posts. She has a fresh perspective I like, and she recently wrote a post that makes a lot of sense. Ever heard of branding yourself? Yeah, maybe it's not such a great idea. Read her post, Manifesto, about social networking and branding. Here's her manifesto, but you should read the post, too, because if you don't you're missing something good.
The internet is made of people. People matter. This includes you. Stop trying to sell everything about yourself to everyone. Don’t just hammer away and repeat and talk at people—talk TO people. It’s organic. Make stuff for the internet that matters to you, even if it seems stupid. Do it because it’s good and feels important. Put up more cat pictures. Make more songs. Show your doodles. Give things away and take things that are free. Look at what other people are doing, not to compete, imitate, or compare . . . but because you enjoy looking at the things other people make. Don’t shove yourself into that tiny, airless box called a brand—tiny, airless boxes are for trinkets and dead people.
Also, she recently wrote a post about getting an MFA. We've talked about this before on The Literary Lab, so you if you've ever wondered if you need or want an MFA, go read it here: How To Get an MFA
I don't want to live in a tiny airless box, do you? I feel like what we do here is talking TO you, and I hope you feel the same way. We like interaction here, and our goal is to converse. Do you feel like we do that here?