Link Salad for January 8th, 2009

Cory Doctorow: Writing in the Age of Distraction. This couldn’t be a more timely column for me. I feel like I’m in a constant battle against distraction. What works for Cory might not work for everyone but the advice and reasoning is damn solid.

Health Insurance is a bitch. Short version: man with COPD needs a double lung transplant to live but he can’t get on the waiting list until he has $500,000 to $1,000,000 in cash or insurance benefits. Please spread the word or donate, if you’re so able.

Today is day 13 of 14 for Apex Book’s sales drive. I just ordered every back issue of the magazine they had in stock. It’s one of my hands-down favorite zines to read.

Via Jetse de Vries, space is louder than we expected. Cosmic radio background is six times louder than expected.

Jay lake ponders cultural authority and presumed expertise. I’m following the discussion with vested interest. I have and will continue to write characters that are non-white, non-middle class. Having an awareness of what you’re doing — and of readers default expectations — are critical.

Link Salad for 2 January 2009

Discover Magazine’s top 100 stories of 2008

Slush Lessons from Apex, who is also re-open to submissions. They’ve also announced a new anthology, open for submissions on March 1st, 2009: The Blackness Within.

Reminders: Viable Paradise, Clarion, Clarion West, and the CSSF Short Fiction workshop are now open to applications. Good luck!

Diamonds link comet to extinction of dozens of mammal species.