Book Review: A Merchant in Oria

Title: A Merchant in Oria Author: David Wiley Genre: Fantasy, Epic Fantasy (Novella) Book Blurb per Goodreads: Firion is a young merchant descended from generations of merchants. His first big break comes along when he sets out to trade with the wealthy dwarven kingdom of Oria. He has always dreamed of visiting this grand kingdom, having … Continue reading Book Review: A Merchant in Oria

The Most Important Rule of Backstory

Every story has backstory--the stuff that happened before the characters were born, or met, before the problem of the story was enough of a problem for you to sit down and write about it. Even ancient stories about creation have backstory about the gods and what they were up to before they decided to make … Continue reading The Most Important Rule of Backstory

How Useful is the Bechdel Test in Writing?

For those who may not be familiar with it, the Bechdel Test is a gauge of whether a work of fiction features independent female characters. The requirements are that there must be two women who have at least one conversation together in which they don't talk about a man. The idea is that women should … Continue reading How Useful is the Bechdel Test in Writing?

Book Review: Poet of the Wrong Generation

Title: Poet of the Wrong Generation Author: Lonnie Ostrow Genre: Literary, General Fiction Book Blurb from Goodreads: “It’s not that I don’t love you, and my tears are yet to dry. But you can’t go back and forth forever and we’ve already said goodbye.” Through these words, a young poet unearths his musical soul while … Continue reading Book Review: Poet of the Wrong Generation

George MacDonald Quotes on World-Building

I found this lovely gem in my reader this morning and wanted to share it with all of you. The whole article (found at the bottom of A Pilgrim in Narnia's post) is worth reading, but here are a few favorite quotes: "To be able to live a moment in an imagined world, we must … Continue reading George MacDonald Quotes on World-Building

How to Write an Ending that Fits Your Story

Personally, I like fitting endings even more than happy ones. Sure, it's nice to know that the characters you've read about succeed. When you've invested time and emotional energy, you enjoy it when they make it out of their troubles and gain the victory they've sought for so long, but I don't like false endings. … Continue reading How to Write an Ending that Fits Your Story

Introducing New Book Coaching Options

Getting published can feel like taking a gamble and rolling dice. Sometimes, your number comes up; sometimes it doesn't. But there are ways to increase your chances. You can rework your story so it makes more sense, so the characters are more relatable, the plot more believable. You can get a better cover design or … Continue reading Introducing New Book Coaching Options

Quote of the Week

I've been collecting quotes from books for years now and figure it's high time I put them to use. So here is the quote of the week:   "Pippin was bruised and torn, his aching head was grated by the filthy jowl and hairy ear of the Orc that held him. Immediately in front were … Continue reading Quote of the Week

How Your Emotional State Can Affect Your Editing

I've been thinking about how we humans clean things up. Sometimes, we do it begrudgingly, sometimes compulsively. How we feel (and how close we are to a deadline) usually determines whether our efforts are frantic or methodical. When rushed or pressured, we can get rid of stuff we really should've kept, and I think this … Continue reading How Your Emotional State Can Affect Your Editing

What Fiction Classifications Can Tell You About Your Readers

You can't always tell who's going to pick up your story and read it. Sometimes, readers are unpredictable. Those who don't read your genre may stumble upon it and read it anyways, and what speaks to one person won't to another. But you can tell some things about your own story based on the fiction … Continue reading What Fiction Classifications Can Tell You About Your Readers