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Are You A Jerk Without Realizing It?

By Marcy Kennedy (@MarcyKennedy) How do you react to someone who’s not as good at something as you are? As I’ve mentioned in a previous posts on “My Dark Secret” and “Why Every Couple Should Play Video Games Together” my husband and I play World of Warcraft, a massively multi-player online role playing game. I(…)

Sneak Peek at The Amazon Heir

Back in August, Debra Kristi tagged me in The Next Big Thing, where authors are supposed to answer a series of interview questions on the book they’re currently working on. I made a strategic choice to hold off until now to share because I wanted to tell you about the book that Lisa Hall-Wilson and(…)

Three Common Dialogue Challenges and How to Beat Them

By Marcy Kennedy (@MarcyKennedy) What do we do about a character who speaks in a dialect? In historical fiction, how do we manage to keep our dialogue true to the time period without allowing it to sound stilted? Should we use contractions in science fiction, fantasy, and historical fiction? Even if you’re normally confident when(…)

Source Code: Does What You Do Matter?

By Marcy Kennedy (@MarcyKennedy) Do you ever wonder how many people could have made a difference in the world, could have changed things for the better, but didn’t…because they stopped believing they could? In Source Code, Army helicopter pilot Colter Stevens (Jake Gyllenhaal) wakes up as Sean, a history teacher on a commuter train. Eight(…)

How to Write Dialogue Unique to Your Characters

By Marcy Kennedy (@MarcyKennedy) Do all your characters sound like you? Or an idealized version of you? Do they all sound like each other? Would you recognize if they did? Try this – Could you delete a character and give their lines to someone else without a problem? Could you swap the dialogue of two(…)

Do You Like to Have the Last Word? The Story of Echo

By Marcy Kennedy (@MarcyKennedy) Do you always have to have the last word in an argument? Do you know someone who does? Echo, a mountain nymph in Greek mythology, had to have the last word in everything, and it was her undoing. Echo was beautiful with a musical voice. People enjoyed hearing her talk. Eventually,(…)

Is Genre Dying?

By Marcy Kennedy (@MarcyKennedy) At the Writer’s Digest conference in New York last January, superstar literary agent Donald Maass proclaimed the death of genre. After the conference, my co-writer Lisa Hall-Wilson even wrote about her impressions of his talk on our now defunct Girls With Pens blog. Maass devotes an entire chapter to the same(…)

What Lord of the Rings Character Are You?

By Marcy Kennedy (@MarcyKennedy) A few months ago, I shared how an argument between my husband and I turned into a quiz on What Star Trek Race Are You? Since not everyone is a Star Trek fan, I thought I’d create another one on The Lord of the Rings this time. Read the descriptions below(…)

Does Your Dialogue Deserve to Exist?

By Marcy Kennedy (@MarcyKennedy) The biggest mistake writers make when it comes to dialogue isn’t what you might expect. The biggest mistake we make is forgetting that dialogue—like everything else in fiction—needs a reason to exist. If dialogue comes easily to you, then this is going to be something you need to watch. Because dialogue(…)

How Much Responsibility Should We Take for Others’ Actions?

By Marcy Kennedy (@MarcyKennedy) How would you feel if you were being held legally responsible for someone else’s actions? In the Star Trek: Voyager episode “Random Thoughts,” the crew of the starship Voyager is visiting the Mari homeworld. The Mari are a telepathic people who’ve virtually eradicated crime by outlawing violent thoughts. A man bumps(…)