Category Archives: Writers on Writing

A Personal Take on Go Set a Watchman

Ursula K. Le Guin, photo by Marian Wood Kolisch

A Personal Take on Go Set a Watchman by Ursula K. Le Guin Harper Lee’s “new” book starts out wonderfully. Its young author had a sure touch and a light hand. It is entertaining, vivid, funny, dry. It begins to … Continue reading

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Posted in Books and Reading, Writers on Writing | Tagged , , , | 8 Comments

The Writer/Reader Contract

      Someone once said that the writer-reader contract is more intimate than marriage: one is willing, even eager, to take into their head someone else’s thoughts. How much more intimate can you get?* Is contract another word for … Continue reading

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Posted in Books and Reading, Exactly What I Wanted, Writers on Writing | Tagged , , | 31 Comments

Navigation Q1: How do you make something good?

Ursula K. Le Guin

“How do you make something good?” —Nancy Jane Moore Well, you could start with butter and fresh farm eggs, it’s hard to go wrong from there, unless you’re a vegan. All right, I’ll try to be serious — it’s a … Continue reading

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Navigating the Ocean of Story

Ursula K. Le Guin, photo by Marian Wood Kolisch

Navigating the Ocean of Story Ursula K. Le Guin An Experiment I have enough vigor and stamina these days to write poems, for which I am very thankful. It takes quite a lot of vigor and stamina to write a … Continue reading

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Write Hacks 3 : Worldbuilding Hack

by Sherwood Smith Okay, you’ve got this grand idea for an epic fantasy, and you’ve outlined your story, listed your cast of thousands, and you’ve got all these cool maps of your kingdoms, empires, territories, free cities, and so on. … Continue reading

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Posted in Uncategorized, Worldbuilding, Writers on Writing | Tagged , , | 21 Comments

Practical Magic

flyinghorse_200

I’m always fascinated by the different ways in which people and animals make their way in the world: they learn differently, think differently, and if they’re human, write differently. And it’s all good. For me, though I earn my living … Continue reading

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Write Hacks 2

croppedQuill

I have lists of tips for using social media for promotion; for cleaning up Word docs before formatting them as ebooks; for finding free images to make into book covers; for navigating the maze of twisty little passages that is the iTunes book publishing interface. Okay, I broke down and paid someone to do that last one for me. But I had her name and URL on a list somewhere. Boom, done. Continue reading

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Posted in creativity, Publishing, Research, Writers on Writing, Writing life, Writing Nowadays | Tagged | 3 Comments

Sarah Jones Does Science Fiction

Sarah Jones

I had the good fortune to see the incredible Sarah Jones give a workshop reading of her new one-woman show Sell/Buy/Date at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in San Francisco last month. I had wanted to see her … Continue reading

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Reverence

I have just finished reading Emma Thompson’s screenplay of Sense and Sensibility (which is to say, the final shooting script–Thompson wrote dozens of versions of the screenplay before it was acquired and put into production) and her diary from the shoot*.  She … Continue reading

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“Adders. Why did it have to be adders?” [or] Because Max Said So

This is the post I was going to write for Max Adams’ blog, but she wouldn’t let me because she said she doesn’t do snakes. There is irony, here, people. Irony. You see, a few years back before the turn … Continue reading

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