So I found this old notebook

. . . that reminded me that my novel has come a long freakin’ way from its inception in 1998. Yeah, it’s been that long. But let me hasten to add that, although I had the very basic, very rough idea for it waaaay back then, I didn’t actually start writing it in novel form until 2005. Until then, Anderson and her slowly developing world existed in my head (along with my awesome superhero comic book) and on a few pages in a spiral notebook. Life was happening, you see. I was married, we were seeing America through the windshield … Continue reading So I found this old notebook

The Daily Post: Daily Prompt: Memories for Sale

(Okay, always wanted to do one of these, so here goes.) On a weekend road trip, far away from home, you stumble upon a garage sale in a neighborhood you’re passing through. Astonished, you find an object among the belongings for sale that you recognize. Tell us about it. Photographers, share an image that says MEMORY. I’m lost again. I used to think that maybe my Tom-Tom had it in for me. Now, I’m sure of it. “Take a left at the next intersection” led me here, to a neighborhood with old houses and large, sprawling front yards. Spanish moss … Continue reading The Daily Post: Daily Prompt: Memories for Sale

Writing, page 11: Mistakes were made

Anonymous blog person: The first of which was this post. Me: Okay, ignore that. I haven’t done any writing tips posts in a while, so here we go. Not that I’m an expert, but every writer has his/her own take on the craft, and I like hearing them, so I figure people like hearing mine. If not, too bad. People make mistakes. Huge one, small ones, small ones that become huge. (Somehow, though, the huge mistakes never become small ones.) It stands to reason then, that if you want your fiction to be the best it can be, that your characters must make … Continue reading Writing, page 11: Mistakes were made

Writing, page 10: For every beginning, there is an end

The End. Two very simple words that give a lot of writers a hard time. And by a lot of writers, I mean me and a few I’ve spoken to in online forums. (All right, I didn’t actually speak to them, I tapped some keys in response to their tapped keys.) Maybe I just don’t have the right books, but the ones I do have on writing novels and short stories and etcetera don’t spend a lot of time, if any, on the ending of your story. Mucho info on beginning, middle, and giving your characters quirks (more on this … Continue reading Writing, page 10: For every beginning, there is an end

Writing, page 9: For every end, there is a beginning

Once upon a time, I took a night class on novel-writing. From 6 to 9 every Monday night for two weeks, I sat in a small classroom with seven other aspiring writers while the instructor, an old guy who specialized in Westerns and mysteries, taught us The Ways of the Novel. At that time, I was chewing through the second draft of the manuscript that would eventually become Bulletproof Werewolf. It was complete, in as much as there was a beginning, a middle, and an end. I had more than the others; I was the only one with a finished novel … Continue reading Writing, page 9: For every end, there is a beginning

Moo-haa-haa-h

That is supposed to be an evil laugh. I think I need to practice it more, maybe get a vocal coach like Dr. Horrible. (Just watched NPH in Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog. Funny, touching, musical forty-minute-or-so program. I recommend it.) It’s been a while since I posted anything, so here I am, and I bring you news from the really-real world: I have an agent. And now this means I have work, besides my day job, coming up with marketing and promotion plans (and following through on them) and I guess editing on my much-maligned manuscript. Excuse the alliteration. I’m reading Double Dexter, and there’s a bit of that … Continue reading Moo-haa-haa-h

Writing, page 8: Stuck in the middle with you

The middle of the story. It comes to all us writers. At first, my story is humming right along. I’ve introduced the main character(s) and the supporting cast. I have the Event, the thing that propels my story and gives my hero (female in this example, for the purposes of estrogen domination and because my main character is female) a reason to exist. I even know the ending, or at least a shadow of it. Yup, things are humming right along. Great. But here comes the middle of the story, chapters 11 or 12 or wherever, when things just kind of . … Continue reading Writing, page 8: Stuck in the middle with you

Writing, page 7: Raindrops keep falling on your head

I am a writer, the god of my fictional universe, dangling my characters, both major and minor, from my fingertips like little marionettes made of nouns and adjectives and prepositional phrases. That flat tire that made you late for that crucial job interview, thus causing you to miss out on that job and thereby forcing you to take that shady job from that shadier businessman? My fault. Dangling by your fingertips from the edge of a building, while burly gun-toting bad guys search for you on the rooftop? My fault. Oh, and look, those bricks you’re gripping so tightly are about … Continue reading Writing, page 7: Raindrops keep falling on your head

Writing, page 6: “Dialogue?”

Dialogue’s probably the hardest thing for a writer to do, other than publish a book and kill Man Bear Pig. It’s hard to say why dialogue is so hard; it shouldn’t be harder than plotting an entire book, breathing life into fictional characters, or describing things that exist only in your imagination. Once you have those things down, allowing your characters to chill at the local Starbucks and talk about that hot guy standing by the biscotti rack should be fairly easy. But it’s not. A lot of writers fear and/or hate writing dialogue. H.P. Lovecraft avoided it at all costs. The … Continue reading Writing, page 6: “Dialogue?”

Writing, page 5: Pop culture references that 66 % will understand

Welcome (wherein I introduce the post’s theme) Sixty-six percent is my unofficial, undocumented, off-the-cuff estimation of how many readers understand an author’s pop culture reference at any given time. My numbers are based on Stephen King’s new book, 11/22/63, which is about time travel and JFK’s assassination. Good book so far. And since I already revealed that it is about time travel, I can reveal that the narrator travels back to 1958, a long jump from the book’s default time setting of 2011. In the book, there are references to Moxie, a soda available only in Pennsylvania and the New … Continue reading Writing, page 5: Pop culture references that 66 % will understand