Category: writing articles

How to write a novel: a beginner’s guide to the basics of storytelling.

First off, you have to know these two things: Your first draft of your first book will be terrible. All your favorite authors of all time wrote a terrible first draft of their first book too. Probably a terrible second and third draft, maybe…

Writing Diversity: Can You Force it?

Writing diversity isn’t “forced.” What’s forced in writing is continuously cherry pick the situations in which many groups have been deliberately forced outby the one group who prides themselves as being ‘the norm.’ Let me explain: While the world is very diverse, there are situations and areas where someone…

Why Can’t I Stick to My Outline?

The inability to write what you’ve outlined plagues many of us, and it has many potential causes, some of which have workarounds, while others don’t. Here’s just a couple: 1. You don’t know your characters well enough when you outline, so when you write them,…

Writing: Hobby vs Career. (Spoilers: both are hard!)

If you want to write as a career you’ll have to write on days you don’t want to. You’ll have to write when you aren’t motivated, when you aren’t in the mood, when writing isn’t any fun. Just because writing is something people can have fun doing, doesn’t…

Character Creation

I’ve been running my characters through these questions so I thought I might as well share them. They are meant to be a fun but challenging look at how your characters are going to interact with each other and the plot. The examples and…

Can Stories Truly be Good or Bad?

As I’ve grown as a writer, one unexpected change in the way I view and critique other stories is that I no longer see stories on a scale of good to bad, but from finished to unfinished. There are rarely ‘bad’ stories, only stories that needed…

Speculative Elephants: More About Description.

(A continuation of the feverish analysis in this post.) Let’s now consider a reader who has no idea what an elephant is. We the writer want to present our reader with words aligned in just the right way that we paint a picture of an elephant…

Let’s Talk about Querying!

(And why I stopped querying my novel.) As some of you know, I was querying Iron From Fire on and off from March through May, and I recently decided to quit, despite it being overall a good story written in what one editor described as ‘on…

Descriptions as Elephants: the Happy Medium.

There are a lot of odd rules floating around about descriptions (some of which are useful and others… not so much), but to form writing theories that any writer can apply to their own work without losing their personal style, we often need to…

The Writer VS Criticism

I’ll tell you a secret: I’m deathly afraid that no one actually likes my writing. (Which is a little silly when my debut is receiving a few hundred five star reviews for every one star equivalent, but brains aren’t always very logical). So if you’re…