Category Archives: Uncategorized

Habits as Characterization

We all have habits–and those habits, good or bad, define us in the eyes of others. The girl who is always late for work, the boy who never says “thank you”, the couple who drop in on their friends–and stay … Continue reading

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Animal Sidekicks

Think how much would be lost if all the wonderful animals that populated the Harry Potter series suddenly went missing. If Harry’s fateful letter were delivered by an ordinary postman, half the magic (quite literally) would disappear from that first … Continue reading

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Writing…Without Purpose

Every piece of writing–long or short–should have a clear purpose. Know yours–before you put the pen to the page, the finger to the key. You can discover that by asking yourself a simple question, before you begin–what do I want … Continue reading

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Writing…without Passion

Have you ever had a job so mind-numbingly boring you wonder why you don’t die of ennui? Writing should never be one of those jobs, because if it bores you, it’ll bore your readers. Find a way to fire every … Continue reading

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Writing…Without a Plan

Pantsers abound the world over. They like surprise endings too. But is that the best way to handle a writing project? In an earlier post, I said the quickest route from point A to point B is a straight line. … Continue reading

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Gas and Brake

I recently took a course on Udemy, taught by Elizabeth Bezant. http://www.writing-information-and-tips.com/elizabeth-bezant.html. One of the most important things I learned from her was how to use “gas” and “brake” pedals in my writing. Action and dialogue are the gas pedal. … Continue reading

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Teenage Angst Bullshit

Every serious story has a certain level of drama. Unwed mother leaves her baby in a basket on the church doorstep. Boy steps aside so the girl of his dreams can marry his rich rival, who can give her the … Continue reading

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Modern Matrimony

Yesterday’s blog post on sanction patterns came to mind, while I was reading this poem, published in Motley Measures, Bert Leston Taylor, 1913. Modern Matrimony He Dear one, when we exchange our vows We’ll knot the loosest sort of tie; … Continue reading

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Less Sex is Sometimes More

Recently, I purchased a box of Harlequin romance novels from a flea market. One in particular, a book called The Sacrifice by Mary Hollins, written in 1969, comes to mind as a perfect example of what a writer could do … Continue reading

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Description Checklist

To properly set a scene for your readers, you’ll need three key ingredients: 1. Unity 2. Emphasis 3. Coherence To demonstrate, I will borrow a scene from a random novel from my bookshelf: “Yonder, bluely spread with the splendor of … Continue reading

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