Monday, April 23, 2007

International Pixel-Stained Technopeasants

Due to the current voting for the officers of the SFWA, one of the members called those members who give material away online Scabs and accused them of trying to undermine the entire paradigm/cost structure of the fictional world.

Frankly, I find that odd, as I've been around the 'Net long enough to remember when materials given away on it was the de facto standard. It was odd to find something that charged for materials. Of course, back then I was able to register on every single web page that required registration and I did so just so that I would always have the same handle.

But I'm getting off topic.

In response to those accusations one of the SFWA authors, Jo Walton, created and organized the International Pixel-Stained Technopeasants day. What IPST is, is a day where authors/creators/whatever give away some of their material. For free. Online.

I like it. And in fact have already found two books that I probably would not have purchased at the book store - yet now I have them available and will read them.

As a concept this is a great way to bring interest to little known writers.

As a jab at that pompous SFWA author who called them all "webscabs" it's hilarious.

Here are a few links for everyone:

  1. Jo Walton's LiveJournal where she lists some IPST participants.
  2. The IPST LiveJournal Community
Like I said, I'll now be reading Jo Walton's The Rebirth of Pan and S.K.S Perry's Darkside. Two stories (and authors) I probably would not have picked up if it were not for IPST. As an aside, the reading and reviewing of those two stories will probably push back me finishing my re-read and review of Heinlein's Friday.

As a special note, I recently read Scalzi's Old Man's War on a whim due to the fact that I read his blog (watch for the review of that novel tomorrow). If anyone else has found good stories that are worth reading due to IPST (or due to any type of online material that was freely available - such as a blog) drop me a link in the comments. I enjoy reading too much to pass up this wealth of free material.

Of course that is a double-edged sword, as I'll probably find more authors to read due to this, which means spending yet more money on books.

4 comments:

RJ Peters said...

Of course that is a double-edged sword, as I'll probably find more authors to read due to this, which means spending yet more money on books.

I guess that's the ultimate goal of most 'free' offers. If you like what get for free, then maybe you'll pay for more. Which can't be a bad thing for little known writers.

Stephen Wrighton said...

Oh, I have no doubt about that. And it is a good thing for both little known and well known authors. For example, I would never have bought a PERN novel if my brother-in-law hadn't given me my first one.

The problem is that we're a single-income family. Which means I must be very selective in my new book buying habits. I routinely visit the library - but we live in a small town so they don't purchase Sci-Fi/Fantasy as often as I'd like. That leaves me to either wait for them to go on clearance at the big box book stores or visit the second-hand shops.

RJ Peters said...

I'm lucky that I get access to the full Fort Worth library system. I used to buy books all the time, but I just can't afford it anymore. With a pretty strong library system, though, it's not such a bad thing. I empathize with you, though.

Stephen Wrighton said...

See, now I'm jealous. I live in the panhandle of Florida which basically equates to lower Alabama. There's not a lot to feed my Sci-Fi/Fantasy needs.

Oh well, there's still a decent number of books I've not gotten around to reading in the library, and IPST has dumped a lot of reading material out into the wild as well.

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