Monthly Archives: March 2017

Dragon Chow

At some fairly early point in the development of my series of fantasy novels (no, they’re still not ready for publication — rewrites are ongoing) I made what in retrospect appears to have been a stunningly bad decision. It made … Continue reading

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The Gods

Here’s a tip. I’m sure I’ve mentioned this before, but it bears repeating: If you’re writing fantasy, or really any type of plotted fiction, do not — repeat, do not — include a god or gods in your story. Gods … Continue reading

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Make Up Your Mind, Please

Just a quick kvetch today, a follow-up to yesterday’s post about how you have to trust your own vision for a story and not just follow an editor’s suggestions blindly. As already noted, the editor who is working on my … Continue reading

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Of Mice and Editors

Orson Scott Card suggests that a novel will have one of four things as its primary focus — milieu, ideas, characters, or events (M.I.C.E.). Naturally, all novels will mix all four in some way, but one or another will predominate. … Continue reading

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Sing Us a Song, You’re the Grammar Man

Tonight I’m stalking the wily sentence. As a writer of nonfiction I’m quite proficient, but I’d like to learn more about the luminous prose styles the great novelists use. How do they do that? Not that I’ll ever be a … Continue reading

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Long View vs. Wide View

You can buy any number of books on the basic techniques of fiction — and you should. Instruction on how to handle point of view, flashbacks, and dialog tags, on how to develop characters and plot, is readily available, and … Continue reading

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Literary Cow Pies

My quest for ideas about how to write well is ongoing. By “write well” I mean, at the moment, how to write sentences and paragraphs that are strong — that communicate. That are, not to put too fine a point … Continue reading

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