Think a Fiction Formula is a Bad Idea? Think Again…

Another year. Another NaNoWriMo win. Another story fail. Sound familiar?

I completed another NNWM this year, in spite of working full-time. That’s the good news. I can write enough each day to reach the goal of 50K words in 30 days. The bad news is, the story’s terrible. In fact, it’s not really a […]


Not Everybody Survived NaNoWriMo 2012

An interesting view of the NaNoWriMo experience, from a newbie who also writes other stuff for a living.

Almost all folks new to writing a novel in November suffer this sort of culture shock. Even, or maybe especially, those who write other things and write them well. Alexandra Petri is a fine writer, and her […]


Got Writer’s Block? See If This Helps…

Let’s say you’re a budding young novelist. And let’s say you’ve got writer’s block. But I repeat myself…

One kind of writer’s block is often due to the profound trouble that underlies this lament: “I can’t seem to get any good ideas!” Oh, you have some clue how to begin, but getting a story out […]


SAT Novels: Who’s Writing One?

There’s a special kind of young adult book category out there: the SAT Novel. Ever hear of them? Better yet, are you writing one?

I have lots of questions. Where’s the best source of words found on the SAT tests? How do you get your hands on the list? Are there standards for language level, […]


The 21 Fiction Genres (And Their Cousins)

I was reviewing a section of a book I read some years ago titled Story Structure Architect. Because I’ve recently been sensitized to the need to have one’s fiction properly categorized, I quickly became interested (that’s code for got way off task) in an early chapter called The 21 Genres.  So, according to Victoria Lynn […]


Your Writing Time is Precious; Put a Fence Around It!

Life places lots of demands on us. Everyday chores; cooking and eating; exercise; social events; even a bit of romance, if we’re lucky. Washing clothes, shopping, kids to and from school and their extracurricular events. Even if you’re an empty-nester, there are still demands on your time with the kids.

If you want to be […]


It’s New Year’s Eve; Any Writing Resolutions?

I know you’re probably out partying about now, and not thinking at all about resolutions. But just in case you’re home, why not pause and outline some thoughts on what you’ll commit to for your writing.

I’m planning to run with the NaNoWriMo crowd again in November. However, there’s a lot of 2012 to cover […]