Writing

Three Experiments You Shouldn’t Try

It’s in the nature of writers to push boundaries. Innovators of the past are widely celebrated, and as our cultural mindset changes, our stories must too. However, a successful experimenter needs a solid understanding of what conventions they are breaking, and why those conventions were … read more »

Balancing Character Agency

It’s pointless to debate whether plot or characters are more important. They are both essential, and they work together to create the story. Unfortunately, they don’t always work well together. More than a few storytellers have planned their plot to the end, only realizing once … read more »

Three Ways to Plot With Index Cards

It can be tough to pull together the plot for a novel. There’s a lot that goes into it, and it’s hard to make sure that you have it all straight in your head before you start writing. Sometimes the only way to be sure … read more »

Tying Your Plot Together

You’ve finally finished the draft of your magnum opus. You’ve developed engaging characters and placed them in a vibrant setting. You’ve filled each scene with conflict, tension, and chocolate. But something’s wrong. The friends who’ve read it tell you that while each scene is entertaining, the … read more »

Life After NaNoWriMo

You’ve turned in your 50,000 words, watched the congratulatory video, and taken a great sigh of relief. You may now rest on your laurels, content that you have defeated the blank page. Haha. NaNoWriMo may be over, but your work is not. Read more »

The Keys to a Great Opening Scene

The beginning of your story can do many things, but one is more important than any other: capturing the reader’s interest. If they don’t keep reading, any other purpose – setting the tone, hinting at central themes, or whatever else – becomes pointless. As a … read more »

Writing for Roleplaying Games

Worldwound Incursion Cover

One of the panels I was fortunate enough to attend at Geek Girl Con this year was “Writing for Roleplaying Games” led by Amber E. Scott. Ms. Scott is a freelance writer who has written numerous books for Paizo Publishing’s Pathfinder series, as well as … read more »

Clichés Are Bad, Mkay?

A cliché is usually defined as “an overused phrase or expression.” How much use is overuse? 42. While this is wonderfully objective, it neither clarifies which phrases people are referring to, nor explains what’s wrong with using them often. Read more »

The Problem With Multiple Viewpoints

Many storytellers enjoy looking through the lens of more than one character. In speculative fiction, multiple viewpoint characters are often used to show different places in the world, or illustrate a conflict that is epic in scale. Unless the story involves a device that is … read more »