on writing

I had a thing to say…

But really, it can all be summed up thus: The squalling of “oh, fantasy isn’t about REAL issues or proper use of metaphors” we’re seeing once again from critics and writers who should know better by now ignores the fact that ALL good fiction invokes moral and psychological themes – and emotional themes, too. And […]

Deeply amused and not at all surprised….

My post on using American history in fantasy over at Charlie Stross’ blog seems to have evolved in comments into a “the technical aspects of how you’d write an alternate American history where the Indian tribes don’t lose” alternating with arguments over the definition of Celtic and related UKcentric socioarcheology, and the only-occasional hitting of my […]

Thinky Thoughts

After spending a year creating a new world and new characters for SILVER ON THE ROAD, returning to Sylvan investigations, and the world of the Cosa Nostradamus is kind of… interesting, in a shake-up-the-brain way. Because none of you have met Isobel, Matthew or Farron yet. None of you have encountered the boss, or Calls […]

Words Are as Words Will

Some people can write five or six or ten thousand words in a day, and suffer no ill effects. Some people are pleased if they manage a thousand. There’s no ideal speed (so long as you hit your deadline) and the writer who goes at a slow and steady pace is no better a writer, […]

some people don’t understand me when I talk to my screen….

Today, as those of you who follow me on Twitter may have seen, I wrote my way into a massive conflict between Story & Outline. Decided to give them pistols at 10 paragraphs, and let them sort it out. Much to my surprise, that worked. Or rather, what worked was, I looked at History and […]

Weekend Wisdom (?) from the Wordwar Room….

For newcomers: the wordwar room is an online co-writing session, wherein convivial peer pressure (in 30 and 60 minute ‘wars’) makes the words happen.  Also the griping, whinging, and idea-testing.  The room runs 24/7, with members across the globe. Any serious-about-it writer is welcome to join us. ——————- Ideas are easy.  Execution is where you […]

Finding Your Voice (no, not that voice, the other voice)

Two weeks ago, sitting in Mary Robinette Kowal’s “how to give a reading” seminar at Illogicon*, we discovered that I don’t hum. No, really. She asked us to do a voice exercise that involving humming up and down your range, to expand it, and I… couldn’t. It was such a strange, unfamiliar request, that the […]

In The Beginning: Begin, and then Begin Again.

Every story opens in its own way, with the slow lead-in or the sudden drop into action, the burst of dialogue or a detailed description of the setting.  But when I write that first line, the very first time I open a file, and type “chapter one?”  I always (okay, 98% of the time) start […]

Three Things (and two on credit) make a Monday Post

1. I am interviewed over at Book View Cafe 2. The truth is, sometimes you think you know your theme, you think you know the driving motif, the point you’re trying to make, and then you get to the end and it’s all “holy shit I made that. What the hell is that?” Because the best […]

The semi-illicit thrill of discovery….

We’re working on getting the first two Sylvan Investigation stories ready for their general release (October, for those of you waiting), and part of that is proofing the digital formats (ALL the digital formats.  Dear Universe, all we want for our birthdays is One Universal e-Format, please?).  Which means I’m skimming for obvious typos and […]