Making Maps: Part II

We’re continuing on with our geographical quest by looking at forests, mountains, hills, volcanoes, wetlands, and ice and snow. By the end of this two-part article, you should have all of the basic tools to help you chisel out the maps of your secondary worlds with the confidence of a cartographer. … Read More >Making Maps: Part II

Making Monsters

I’m delighted to share with you a guest blog post I wrote for http://www.writingbad.org. This is part of my Fantasy Friday series (though please forgive it going live on Monday!). Fantasy is a genre rich with imagined creatures and beasts. Creations which haunt our dreams and make us walk that little bit faster after dark. This article first looks at a few of the more common monsters and then explores some methods to assist you in becoming the next Dr. Frankenstein. … Read More >Making Monsters

Prose: The Controversial Flashback

Why the hostility toward flashbacks? If done well, they work. But done badly, they break the reader’s experience, preventing them from discovering what happens next in the story. To quote editor, Sol Stein, “If we are enthralled, we don’t want to be interrupted.” The trick, therefore, if you feel compelled to use one, is to use the flashback in as little a disruptive way as possible. Here are a few techniques to help you do that. … Read More >Prose: The Controversial Flashback

Stopping the Reader’s Heart: Creating Tension

Can you think of a moment in a novel or story when you lost all awareness of your surroundings? The only thing that mattered was happening on the page, and then at the end, you come up for air and utter a “fuck.” … Read More >Stopping the Reader’s Heart: Creating Tension

The end of another year…

In June I began this blog with a post on the writing process. I was always a bit apprehensive about starting a blog. What have I got of worth to give to the world? I managed to shake that niggling thought. … Read More >The end of another year…

Prose: “Tell me, and I’ll forget.” Showing Instead of Telling

In his book, On Writing, Sol Stein provides a very helpful guide on something writers so often hear about: showing the story instead of telling it. Do you remember asking someone, a family member perhaps, to tell you a story? It’s almost as if we’ve been conditioned to tell rather than show. … Read More >Prose: “Tell me, and I’ll forget.” Showing Instead of Telling

The Writer’s Shop Window

If a reader wants to learn more about you and your writing the first thing they’re going to look for is your website. Like looking through a shop window, if they see something which intrigues them, they may step inside and buy something.

In not having a website you’re missing out on precious opportunities to connect with potential followers.

This article first looks at how to make a site, what it ought to feature, before finishing with a discussion about blogging … Read More >The Writer’s Shop Window

The Many Sub-Genres of Fantasy

In identifying your sub-genre you can better target your readers as well as the types of publishers that look for that type of tale. Not only that, it’ll help to make useful comparisons to other, well-known books in that sub-genre which may, with luck, help you sell more! … Read More >The Many Sub-Genres of Fantasy

A Fantasy Writer’s Guide to Castles and Keeps: Part II

The medieval setting has become almost synonymous with the fantasy genre (to the dismay of … Continue ReadingA Fantasy Writer’s Guide to Castles and Keeps: Part II

Real Writing Stories #3: My Writing Day – Caroline Barden

Real Writing Stories returns with a fresh instalment. Continuing with the series My Writing Day, … Continue ReadingReal Writing Stories #3: My Writing Day – Caroline Barden