Trauma as Backstory

Or, how do you put a character through the wringer without forcing them to wallow in tragedy for an entire novel? Turn it into a short story. No, don’t laugh at that; it was really terrible. There’s a reason my husband is responsible for all the humor in this relationship. But it’s a legitimate question,... Continue Reading →

Bad Bad Books

How bad are your books? I mean, the ones you wrote? I couldn't tell you that about mine. Not if you tortured me. Because I don't know. I was once very shocked when a friend whom I admire as a writer asked me how long I intended to write very bad books. I was shocked,... Continue Reading →

Food as a marker

Writing about a culture or place or people you know very little about is full of tricks and traps. Often, it's little things which even those who live there just don't get. My son -- who moved from South Africa to the UK was pointing the different attitude to different foods in the various countries.... Continue Reading →

Gone Reading

Yesterday, instead of the massive mountain of household chores and writing MGC (to say nothing of staring at a blank page and kicking myself for being out of words, fiction or fact), I took the day off. I started the day by not getting out of bed, and finishing a book. (Alma Boykin's finale to... Continue Reading →

How to Anthology: Part 2

Much has changed since last I sat at my keyboard to write the first part of this mini-series on editing and publishing anthologies as an Indie. The convention weekend was fantastic, for many reasons. One? I leveled up as a publisher. I now have someone I'm working with to administer the anthologies. So unlike my... Continue Reading →

I Should be Writing

“Everybody walks past a thousand story ideas every day. The good writers are the ones who see five or six of them. Most people don’t see any.” — Orson Scott “When I sit down to write a book, I do not say to myself, ‘I am going to produce a work of art.’ I write... Continue Reading →

Words Are Our Profession

Look, I know not everyone is as goofy about words as I am. I can become struck by a sentence, and have it repeat in my head for days as I become half-drunk on it. Most of those sentences are poetry, but sometimes it's just a bit of prose where each word strikes a deeper... Continue Reading →

AI Writing Apps

Earlier, I was asked about AI writing apps and had to admit I didn't know much about them. I filed the request and made a mental note to get back to it. I hadn't expected it to happen so quickly. Then I saw a very short post about one such program over on The Passive... Continue Reading →

Travail

We seem to exist in a sort of circularity. Once travel was hard and to be dreaded. Then things got easier and better... and then they got to cattle-car-class and crotch fondlers and be there 2 hours before a 40 minute flight. Ok, so I am kidding, flying still means covering distances at speeds and... Continue Reading →

Out of Communications

It’s been an interesting weekend, and it’s not over yet. Which is why you won’t get part 2 of committing anthology until next week. I’m at FenCon in Irving, TX. About two hours away from home, so not a bad drive at all for me. I’ve been joking without much irony at all that it... Continue Reading →

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