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How to Use Taste to Make Your Readers Hungry for More

According to Jeff Gerke of Marcher Lord Press, a successful small publisher of speculative fiction, one of the most common problems in both novice and advanced fiction is not enough description. This means that, regardless of what draft you’re working on, you probably have too little description rather than too much. The fix is actually(…)

Do We Need to Be A Little More Old-Fashioned?

If you woke up one day to find that 70 years had passed, would you be excited or would you mourn for lost friends and family and the way of life you’d known? When we meet Steve Rogers again in The Avengers, he’s still struggling with this very thing. Back in 1942, a special serum(…)

What’s the Point of Fairy Tales?

Last weekend I sat down with a long-awaited treat—The Tales of Beedle the Bard. If you’ve read Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows or watched the movie, then you’ll recognize The Tales of Beedle the Bard as the book of wizarding-world fairy tales containing “The Tale of the Three Brothers” (who owned the Deathly Hallows).(…)

Four Little-Known Factors that Could Destroy Your Blog’s Chances of Success

Are you frustrated because your blog has plateaued? Maybe you took part in a class or joined Triberr, saw a jump in stats, but now things have leveled out again, and you can’t figure out why you’re not growing the audience that other bloggers seem to be. Or maybe you know your content is well-written,(…)

How Do We Know If Someone Has Truly Changed?

How can we tell if someone has truly changed? How many chances should we give someone before saying “no more”? The knotty nature of authentic change is a theme Once Upon A Time comes back to again and again. Sydney Glass has the chance to change from being Regina’s spineless, love-sick toy to a man(…)

Battleship – More than Just a Board Game?

Three things entice me to watch a movie in the theater–an amazing plot, connection to a book I loved, or a romance that gives me stomach flutters. Even better if you can put those things together. But I’m going to watch Battleship in theaters. Why? For the same reason I watched Battle: Los Angeles in(…)

How to Make Your Novel Scratch and Sniff

Do you want your reader to feel like they’re part of your world? Do you want your setting to stick with them long after they’ve closed your book? One of the best ways to bring your fictional world to life is to use all five senses. Because each sense comes with its own unique strengths(…)

Do You Ever Feel Like You Don’t Fit In?

If you’ve ever felt like you don’t fit in, you have something in common with a Viking teenager named Hiccup. Hiccup is the scrawny, clumsy, yet creative son of the Viking chieftain in the Dreamworks movie How to Train Your Dragon. No one quite understands Hiccup’s unique ways of doing things. More than anything he(…)

Are You Going to Watch Marvel’s Avengers Assemble?

Next weekend marks the release of another movie I’ve been waiting for–The Avengers! Loki, supervillain brother of Thor, has assembled an army to take over the world. Regular forces can’t stop them, so Nick Fury decides to put together a group of superheroes. My favorite, Tony “Ironman” Stark (played by Robert Downey, Jr.), looks like(…)

Do You Worry You Won’t Succeed As A Writer?

Do you worry you won’t ever succeed as a writer? I do. Despite how far I’ve come, despite the goals I’ve reached, some days I wonder if those people who want me to quit are right. Some days all I can see is how far I still have to go. And lately, I’ve been struggling(…)