Six impossible things


To fix or not to fix

A while back, Kin asked “What reason (other than simple laziness) would necessitate a mere patch, plug, or ignore of plot holes in a story?” “Necessitate” is the key word here, because in writing, necessity is in the eye of the author and/or reader. There are never […]

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Getting Back Into It

I just spent two weeks “on vacation” in Orlando, FL (which is a long story, full of disasters and near-disasters, but which ended up being fun and relaxing in spite of everything), and now I have to get back into a work rhythm that I’ve been totally […]

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Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone. In case anyone doesn’t have an e-book of SORCERY AND CECELIA and wants one, a bunch of places are doing Black Friday/Cyber Week discounts. Amazon will have it at $1.99 on Friday, 11/25; Kobo will promote it on 11/28, and Apple’s Cyber Week (I’m […]

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Fixing Plot Holes

Plot holes are often one of the first things writers (and editors, and readers) look for in a first draft. That character who got mugged walking home from the bar – why was he walking when you mentioned two chapters back that he arrived on a bicycle? […]

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Rolling revisions

Rolling revision is another one of those controversial writing techniques that many people discourage but a few people swear by. I am a rolling reviser, but I recognize that for a lot of writers, it has serious drawbacks, so I’ll try to talk about it from both […]

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Nanowrimo is here again

Nanowrimo started yesterday. In case you’ve been living under a rock for the last seventeen years, Nanowrimo is short for National Novel Writing Month, a writer’s challenge that started in 1999 with the idea of writing a 50,000 word novel between November 1 and 11:59 on November […]

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Macro Level Reviewing

A quick aside: Sorcery and Cecelia in ebook form is on sale today, Wednesday October 26, for $1.99 through the International BookBub newsletter. So if you were waiting to pick up a copy, now’s your chance. Back to our regularly scheduled post. Regardless of whether an author […]

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What I Didn’t Expect To Get For Free

Different writers get different things “for free” – that is, different techniques and skills come naturally to different writers. I learned this early on, but it took years before I realized that I needed to apply that knowledge to more than my own first draft, and years […]

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What do you do with subplots?

If subplots are “a secondary sequence of action,” what’s the point of having them? Isn’t the primary sequence of action enough? There are quite a lot of points, it turns out, depending on the sort of story one is writing and where one wants it to go. […]

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What’s a subplot?

The Concise Oxford Dictionary of Literary Terms defines a subplot as “a secondary sequence of actions in a dramatic or narrative work,” which is true enough, but not always much help when you’re having difficulty figuring out which parts of your manuscript are subplots and which aren’t. […]

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