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Posts by Jonathan LaForce

Ford vs Ferrari: On the Money!

If you haven’t seen Ford vs Ferrari yet, you need to correct yourself. Yes, it’s a car movie. No, you don’t need to know a great deal about cars. Hell, go in knowing nothing. Because in the end, this movie isn’t about cars. It’s about men. Being men. Doing manly things. Without being negative! You heard that: Hollywood has delivered a wholesome movie about men! In the prescient words of Tychus Findlay: “Hell, it’s about time!”

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All Hail Mong the Magnificent!

We try, as writers, as purveyors of fictional stories, to make characters who can handle the challenges set before them. How a character responds is entirely up to the writer, and the limits of the world in which their characters are interacting. Read more

Don’t Cross the Streams

When we tell our story, what audience are we seeking to gain?  Who are we aiming for? What demographic do we want to come running towards us with their shekels in hand? Read more

Legends become Stories

I consider David Drake largely responsible for my ambition to write.  As an enthusiast of history, I am impressed by where he finds inspiration for his novels- from the annals of human events.  We need not try to conjure up something incredible purely off our own inspiration and energies. Great men and women have performed such deeds as stand paramount in recorded existence.  

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How to Talk with Veterans

Sit, kneel, bend. Smoke ‘em if you got ‘em. We gonna be here for a minute.

Last month, we talked about telling the stories of combat veterans as they really happened. Without whitewashing or varnish. Without embellishment. Without lies.
In the third-to-last paragraph, I make mention of sitting down and talking with veterans. Over the last month I’ve been looking around and realizing nobody has ever explained how to talk with veterans, as a writer looking for technical (and personal) knowledge about the profession of arms. Today, we’re gonna start down that rode.
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Write our story as we lived it.

This particular moment in the year is hard on me.  I, and many others in my profession whom I consider my closest friends, are drawn up in remembrance of those whom no longer dine with us, save in spirit.  This period of reflection (with its accompanying vigils held), is never easy, but it is our responsibility.

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Making the Most of It

I’m finally at graduation.   It’s an odd place. Lest you think I’m kidding, I’m typing this as I listen to the valedictorian speak.  He’s doing a nice job, quoting Theodore Roosevelt about who matters- the man in the arena and not the critic.  

Being the man in the arena is not unusual for me.  I wrestled (and lettered) all 4 years of high school, I earned my living and my pay as a cannon cocker on a gun line.  In these I am totally used to being the man in the arena. Such ventures prepared me for tackling a new arena- academics. Read more