Want to understand your language? Learn another one…

As a writer, I spend a lot of time thinking about language. It’s something writers do. One thing that’s helping me think about language right now is thinking in a different language. People in high school or college language courses say, “I really didn’t learn English until I tried to learn (insert foreign language).” InContinue reading “Want to understand your language? Learn another one…”

Self-isolating before it was cool…

Over on Words Mean Stuff today I’m talking a bit about how to keep the days from blurring together while we’re under ‘lock downs’, ‘stay at home orders’, and other schedule killing effects of the Covid -19 crisis. As writers, we have a leg up on this. If we writers want to be successful, weContinue reading “Self-isolating before it was cool…”

The short (and the long) of it…

Years ago a writer I really respect told me I should start with short stories before I go to long fiction, that there was nothing I could learn in long fiction that couldn’t be learned in a short story. Well, over the years I’ve found that there are a few things about long fiction thatContinue reading “The short (and the long) of it…”

First drafts, and the mountains to follow…

Well dear reader, Unintended Consequences has been submitted. It’s in the hands of editors other than me… In the beginning, writing a whole book, a whole 50-60 thousand word or more novel or even a shorter “how to” book, feels daunting. But, once you get the first draft done you realize (at least if you’reContinue reading “First drafts, and the mountains to follow…”

Don’t give up…

Yep, it’s been a couple weeks. But, I’m still alive. Sometimes you want to work, but life has other plans. Sometimes you just can’t put off that scary step any longer (at least not if you want to finish the project). Sometimes you find someone or something isn’t what you thought, and you have toContinue reading “Don’t give up…”

The in-between…

As I write this, I’m in one of the scariest positions a YA writer can be in, I’ve got young adults reading my unpublished manuscript. It’s scary, but it’s what needs to happen. It also means there’s not a lot of point in working on it too much until I get some feedback. So, whileContinue reading “The in-between…”

Self-Incentivizing

There are lots of reasons to write: money, prestige, getting to tell our stories, and sharing the things we love, among others. But, sometimes these reasons alone aren’t enough of a push. A book can take a year or more to go to press. It could be months before you hear about that story submission.Continue reading “Self-Incentivizing”

Worth Saying?

It’s been said before, and I’m saying it again… If you’re going to be a writer you need to do three things: Read Write Read about writing In a book I’ve been reading the author puts a lot of emphasis on having a salable story. It’s a valid question: is your story salable? It canContinue reading “Worth Saying?”

Chaos, panic, other people, and getting it done!

At the time I’m writing this I have (at least) four big projects going, including: getting the finish work done on a book, getting a new chainmail project set out, putting together a story for a national completion, and gearing up for writing the third novel in a trilogy. I also have my wife atContinue reading “Chaos, panic, other people, and getting it done!”

Team Oxford Comma?

I know… It would sound weird to my younger self too, but the deeper I go into writing and editing I’m gaining an appreciation for the Oxford comma. Once, as a youngster, I learned that that comma before an ‘and’ in lists really wasn’t necessary. It was optional and something the old guys did, soContinue reading “Team Oxford Comma?”