Category Archives: Writers on Writing

The Things People Say—3: Enthymemes
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Cake or death

Most people know what a ’meme’ is. The dictionary definition ’meme’ is: “an element of a culture or system of behavior that may be considered to be passed from one individual to another by nongenetic means, especially imitation.” The dictionary … Continue reading

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Science vs. Magic

(Picture from here.) I was at Readercon last weekend. (My panel was on the Future of Government but I’ll talk about that at a later time. Anyway, I went to one panel moderated by the eminent Gillian Daniels entitled “If … Continue reading

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Posted in fantasy, Magic, Science, science fiction, Writers on Writing | Tagged | 5 Comments

The Things People Say—2
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A Dallas police officer, who did not want to be identified, takes a moment as she guards an intersection in the early morning after a shooting in downtown Dallas, Friday, July 8, 2016. At least two snipers opened fire on police officers during protests in Dallas on Thursday night; some of the officers were killed, police said. (AP Photo/LM Otero)

As regular readers of my articles know, I have a bit of an issue with the way that people—especially highly public and influential people—use and abuse language. Some do this intentionally to manipulate their audience; others do it unintentionally out … Continue reading

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Posted in Community, Culture, Writers on Writing | Tagged , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Parallax Views

There’s a lovely moment in The Avengers (the movie, not the TV series of blessed memory) where Black Widow and Hawkeye are on Park Avenue just below Grand Central Station, fighting off hordes of scary aliens on flying Jet-Skis. They’re … Continue reading

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Posted in family, Memory, Writers on Writing | 5 Comments

Alma’s Bookshelf: Letters from the Fire

  I tell people that I was born in a country that no longer exists – and it doesn’t, not on the maps, not in atlases, not on globes. It has vanished into history, now. But the land that the … Continue reading

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Posted in contemporary, Genres, Memory, Politics, Writers on Writing | Tagged , , , , | 3 Comments

Confessions of a Ghostwriter: Scene-Craft
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My favorite clients are the ones that ask questions, because it means they’re curious enough about the process of writing that they want to understand it. Those questions may be specific: ”On page 50 of my manuscript, why did you … Continue reading

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In Praise of Fanny Price

I have been doing one of my semi-regular Jane Austen re-reads. Every time I find new things: This time I was chagrinned to realize the extent to which certain film versions had overwritten Miss Austen’s original text in my mind–not … Continue reading

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Posted in Books and Reading, Characters, regency, Writers on Writing | Tagged , | 25 Comments

Writing Nowadays–Everyone and Back Story

I was at the grocery store a few days ago and the checkout clerk turned out to be a Handsome Young Man with a shock of red-brown hair, foxy features, and a short beard.  His arms sported several tattoos, including … Continue reading

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Posted in Writers on Writing | Tagged | 2 Comments

Madness and the Age of Innocence

Back when I was nineteen years old and steeped up to my innocent ingenue ears in the Matter of Britain, I dreamed up a story – technically a novel, I guess, seeing as it was over 40,000 words, but not … Continue reading

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Posted in feminism, Genres, Historical fantasy, Memory, Publishing, Writers on Writing | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Writing Nowadays–Differentiating Dialogue

When you’re writing dialogue, every character should speak differently from every other character.  No two characters should have the same speech patterns or word choices. This creates extra work for the author, but it’s well worth it.  The characters come … Continue reading

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Posted in Writers on Writing | Tagged | 3 Comments