Characters Who Fit

I should get back to writing book reviews...unfortunately I haven't been reading much lately, between my recent wedding, the immense number of follow on chores and errands that came from that, finishing an old profitless and pseudonymous project, my new project, and the fact that I work on Eastern time but live in not merely…

Life is Research

I'm working on a new project, which was not the project I meant to work on but it wouldn't leave me alone after I did some thinking about the Kindle Vella (which will arrive...eventually). I had to reach out to a gun nut friend (far gun nuttier than I, alas) to get clarification on something…

Villains

One of the truths of genre fiction is that any story is only really as good as its villain. Historical fiction doesn’t have to do this, crime fiction plays at it mattering, literary fiction is a beast I have no interest in understanding ...but fantasy and sci-fi? Villains matter. Not that a good villain is…

Envy and Wrath as Virtues

As I all too slowly wrap up the work on the Doomwalker sequel (I have a name, but announcing that and commissioning a cover Are thing I want to hold off from until I put the last period into pixels), I get ideas. The present moment lends itself to it, as it’s weirdly stressful and…

Infodumps and How to Use Them

The sequel to Doomwalker has been mostly written for awhile now, but it needs heavy edits. I hit the first big info dump last night, having prepped myself with one of these. Infodumps have a bad rep. "Show don't tell" is a good rule, but it's got limits. Use it for characterization or- and this…

Writing Dialogue

We all know how people speak. It's messy, more rapid-fire than you realize at the time, and conversations seem to flow in one long string. This is not how you write dialogue. There is a lot of flexibility in English, but certain formatting things are very real rules because they make it easy to read.…