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Posts by accordingtohoyt

What Writers Are

It’s four in the morning, or something like that, and having found myself sleepless — no, I actually don’t have any idea why — I’m at my keyboard banging out blog posts, and wanting to work on the current novel, but the mind is foggy from lack of sleep.

And something from a video I watched about strategies for making it indie is running through my mind.  The gentleman, who only writes books about how to make it in indie derided the “write a lot” aka “the brute force” or “shotgunning” strategy as “Sure, it works, but you have to keep writing.” Read more


To begin with, I’m sorry for being so late.  Real life got to me this morning, before I was awake enough to defend myself.

Now let’s talk Sale-ability, that which causes a book to sell well, which is not the same as being a good book, or being a bad book, or really being anything but saleable. Read more

Stop Fondling Evil

To write, you have to — to an extent — understand evil.  You don’t have to fondle, pet it, or call it George.

When I was a very young writer, knee high to a novella, I read the stuff about giving your villains a motive.

This is good advice up to a point.  The point is that at which, instead of giving your villains a motivation, you give them a justification, then you make them into tragic victims, then you feel sorry for them, then you are no longer sure who is the villain and who the good guy.  And then next thing you know, your characters are running around in a grey and uninteresting fog and the reader feels like he’s trudging through soup.  Amoral soup.  (Shut up, it’s my soup, it can totally have morals or lack thereof if I so choose.)

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Serving Three Masters

A Galilean Rabi notoriously said that a man can’t serve two masters, for he’ll neglect one for the other.  Thank heavens I’m not a man, because I’m about to try to serve three.

Yes, I do know “man” is used there in the sense of human.  I’m just justifying my insanity.  The truth is like most writers, I have a time management problem.  No, really, I have several time management problems… I just can sort of roll them all into a gigantic one. Read more

Compensatory Mechanisms

There are times I hate being a writer.  One of the things it does is set me at odds with normal (or really, abnormal but not writers)  human beings, and prevents the enjoyment of simple pleasures that involve story telling.

I used to think I was alone in this, but the last few Liberty cons have quite put paid to that idea, as I hear colleague after colleague say things like “I used to enjoy reading, but now I find myself analyzing it”  or “I loved movies but now I can see the mechanics and the effects.

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Keeping Love in Its Place


Note this is not a marital advice column.

You’ve heard the saying that you should kill your darlings.  Honestly, it depends on who your darlings are and what.  I don’t subscribe to absolutes in terms of writing advice. However I know there is a type of love that will harm your writing, something that falls under “killing your darlings.”

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Independent publishing — indie — is generally a great thing.  When in the course of human events it becomes necessary for a writer to part with their publisher/s there’s no need to let the world know the just causes, you can just leave and start writing indie.

Or you can start out indie, anyway, and not have to suffer the slings and arrows of incompetent office staff and indifferent sales staff. Read more