Q&A

How Do I Show That a Character Is Trans?

questions and answer talk bubbles

In a book I am currently writing, the fictional society has moved beyond any kind of transphobia, so being transgender is not treated as being anything out of the ordinary. Given this, I am wondering how to show that a character is transgender if it … read more »

Analysis

Five Ridiculous Organizations From Popular Stories

Newt emerging from his case in the Wizard Congress chamber.

Organizations play a critical role in speculative fiction. They allow for bigger plots and higher stakes than are feasible with individual characters. However, they are also uniquely challenging. When crafting fictional organizations, storytellers must consider what the organization does, how it operates, where its resources … read more »

Worldbuilding

How to Make Time Travel Logical

It’s often assumed that time travel would break the laws of logic. However, according to some philosophers, most famously the late David Lewis, this need not be the case. Scifi is full of time-travel stories that are fun, exciting, and gripping while breaking the laws … read more »

Story

Chaser of Shadows

A black cat looks on as small shadow creatures circle a teapot

We came alive when the clock rang one. Submerged in night, we were safe from the scorching rays of sun and burning beams of lanterns. We emerged from the cracks in the cupboards and swam through the crannies between the floor planks. Famished from our day of fasting, we slid up the table to taste the dying heat of the evening’s tea and gorge on warmth from the oven. Bolstered, we condensed into shadows of the night air. After that we played, but we heard well the chimes on every hour, and once we heard five, we shrank back into our crevices and slept. So it was before the beast came. Read more »

Storytelling

Seven Tips for a Satisfying Mystery

A set of watch gears shown through a magnifying glass.

Everyone loves a good mystery. But mystery stories have a common problem: no satisfaction at the end. That’s because everything in the story leads to a big reveal about whodunit. Reveals are always tricky to pull off, so if the story’s not firing on all cylinders, … read more »