Story Progression

My day started at three in the morning with a dog barking, a moment of unreasonable panic, and then snuggles that led to sleeping in. So this is a late post. I could talk about the human psychology of my own reactions - because they bear on writing fully developed characters - but instead I'm... Continue Reading →

The Author in the Story

No, not the so-called authorial Mary Sue/Marty Stu school of fiction, where the reader realizes that the protagonist is the author, just perfected in every way. I can think of one, maybe two people who got away with that for one book, possibly two. Stan Lee slipping himself into the comics on occasion doesn't count,... Continue Reading →

Everyone Eats

There's a trick to grinding spices in the mortar with a pestle. You don't actually want to use much pressure, at least not with marble, which is what I am using. Just let the weight of the pestle do the work, and rub downward into the bowl. Every so often I tip the mortar a... Continue Reading →


What is the one thing you would change about yourself? For some reason wordpress thought that was the question I ought to address today. The answer, for all of us, is simple. Underwear. If you're going to spend 4 days at a sf Con, T-shirts too, at least, please! As a personal change I would... Continue Reading →


I'd intended to have a quiet time this morning to write. I get up early on Saturdays, with Sundays the only day of the week I can sleep in. Ordinarily, I'm alone for the first few hours of the day on Saturday... but not this morning. No, this morning I was waking up in the... Continue Reading →


There are many easier and certainly many, many more likely to be profitable ways of making a living than being a writer. I'm... not quite as stupid as your average bear, and, um, actually very capable at a surprising number of things. I could have chosen another course, any one of fifty, really. In some... Continue Reading →

Literary constipation

Given the fact that American readers are mostly wrapped up in election issues, I figured no-one there will read this, so I could give vent to the far more scatological sense of humor that the English world outside of US to have. We're pretty immature, really. Honestly when I was a kid and there was... Continue Reading →

The Conundrum of the Workshops

When the flush of a newborn sun fell first on Eden's green and gold,   Our father Adam sat under the Tree and scratched with a stick in the mold;   And the first rude sketch that the world had seen was joy to his mighty heart,   Till the Devil whispered behind the leaves: "It's pretty, but... Continue Reading →

Blind Spots Abound

There are times when you can only sit back and shake your head at the antics of members of the human race. Yesterday was one of those times for me. What really made me want to jump into the fray with both feet was the idiocy began with the promotion of a friend's book about... Continue Reading →

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