NANO is coming…

I know. It’s still six weeks out. But the time to prep for National Novel Writing Month is now, while it is six weeks out. Writing a novel is a serious endeavor. It takes effort. For many of us, it takes planning. Even if you’re a “pantser” who’ll start on November 1st with a blankContinue reading “NANO is coming…”

Improving your stories (Part 3)

Well dear reader, as promised this week I’m resenting a revised version of my story Life, Death, and Mr. Boggs. I won’t claim that the new version is perfect (After NANO, when I’ve worked on my world some more, I’ll probably want to change it again). But I think this version is a lot better.Continue reading “Improving your stories (Part 3)”

Into the breach… Or, hoisted by my own petard!

I just had to talk to a new couple I ran into. The husband had traveled in some of the same areas I have, and we shared a few interests. The wife also shared a significant interest of mine. She’s also a writer. And that’s where the trouble started. She asked a question, “are thereContinue reading “Into the breach… Or, hoisted by my own petard!”

A (previously) undiscovered barrier

Work flow development isn’t one of the more commonly discussed barriers to entry. But an efficient workflow is something you need as a writer or publisher. Without a solid work flow and some real commitment to the process. You could end up the way a lot of would-be writers do, piddling around on the same project and never really getting anywhere. (I’ve nearly succumbed to that fate and I’ve been working on my work flow since I was 12…)

Creating and distilling

This week I’m working on multiple projects including a novel, a nonfiction book, at least two how two projects, and helping one of my team edit a story he’s writing for school. Amid all this, I find myself thinking about two of the most important steps in any writing project. This week, in the novel,Continue reading “Creating and distilling”

Racist Orcs?

This week I ran into something weird. People proclaiming that orcs (creatures in fantasy stories and games) are racist. My initial response was “Of course orcs are racist! They’re orcs!” Being racist is a known feature of orc culture in every fantasy game and world I’ve ever encountered. But… It turns out the writers inContinue reading “Racist Orcs?”

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…”

Respect…

With all the shutdowns and kerfuffle around the Covid-19 situation, I’ve been watching the publishing and media news with interest. Some of what we’re seeing has been on the way for a while. Some things were a bit of surprise (I didn’t expect Disney execs to cut their own pay until there were no otherContinue reading “Respect…”

Controlling the uncontrollable

“One of my characters and I have spent years trying to tell thunderstorms when and where to thunderstorm,” with that thought I realized a big piece of why it irritates me when people try to dictate (or even interfere with) when and where I write. I’ve spent years trying to control this, channel it, andContinue reading “Controlling the uncontrollable”

Finding the end and going back to the beginning.

Well, the first 1 ½ pass is finished for last November’s NaNoWriMo project. And, as always, I’ve learned a lot! Starting with the1 ½ pass method has had a distinct benefit. By reading and noting on the whole thing before I started making edits I could make better decisions than I have on the first passContinue reading “Finding the end and going back to the beginning.”