Monthly Archives: May 2017

Mulling, Stewing, and the Back Burner

Last week I realized that I had a really awful, intractable plot problem. I should have noticed a year ago, but for some reason (lack of innate talent, in all likelihood) I allowed myself to be satisfied with an utterly … Continue reading

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Sympathy for the Devil

George Bernard Shaw was a very successful playwright. (He was also a failure as a novelist, but that’s another story.) One criticism that was leveled at Shaw, and with considerable justification, was that all his characters spoke like Shaw. They … Continue reading

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Heroics

Thinking out loud here — feel free to pull up a chair, grab the popcorn, and watch the juggler and the sword swallower. I’ve screwed up my courage and read through my editor’s comments and suggestions for Book 3 of … Continue reading

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Things That Matter

Yes — things. The Venetian blinds, the car, the refrigerator. I’ve been dipping into The Practice of Creative Writing by Heather Sellers. (It’s a college textbook. I bought the third edition used, because it was half the price of the … Continue reading

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A Kiss Is Just a Kiss

How much detail do readers need in order to feel the emotion in a scene? And who do you trust to decide that? I tend to be rather intellectual about my writing. I’m not sure that’s a weakness, but it’s … Continue reading

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To Begin With…

My editor didn’t much care for the three-part prologue I wrote for Book 3 of my four-volume epic. I’m pretty sure she’s right. What I was doing was setting up the story, rather in the way that one would assemble … Continue reading

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Muddle Me This

I don’t often post links to other writing blogs, but I enjoyed this essay on bookbaby (http://blog.bookbaby.com/2017/04/number-one-enemy-of-the-writer/). The number one enemy of the writer, blogger Dawn Field suggests, is unclear thinking. If you don’t envision the details of a scene … Continue reading

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