Creative Writers and Action Sequences: a match made for marriage counseling

Why space battles, fated duels, and cavalry charges never read as well as you picture them in your head

After setting the stage for this heart-pounding action sequence for thousands of words it’s finally time to get it down on the page. By now it has been choreographed down to the side-glance and you can describe it beat for beat, so you do, but when you read back through it’s all wrong.

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Kill Your Darlings and Other Excellent Writing Advice I Hate

After years of tough love from teachers and editors, we all find ways of following all that great advice without it making us crazy.

The line is always about how a writer is their own harshest critic, but we’re usually fans of our own work as well. The same cannot always be said of an audience. That’s why the people who want writers to succeed are often the bearers of hard truths such as, “I know, that line is really cool, but it doesn’t work here,” or, “I get the joke, but I don’t think you noticed that it’s also actually very racist.” Here’s what I’ve learned about taking that tough love in the spirit in which it was intended.

Continue reading Kill Your Darlings and Other Excellent Writing Advice I Hate

“Where Did That Dinosaur Come From?” And Other Bothersome Questions

World-building is a beloved pastime in speculative fiction, and dedicated faux-cial scientists like J.R.R. Tolkien have constructed such complete compendiums that there is always an answer to every question, but despite our hunger for the minutia of our favorite fantasy worlds, it isn’t always as necessary as one might be led to think.

Continue reading “Where Did That Dinosaur Come From?” And Other Bothersome Questions