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No, I'm not dead. Not yet, anyway.

Creating Languages

Writing fantasy can so often leave you caught up in a web of your own making. Most fantasy involves a secondary world, that is a world different from our own. Granted, it doesn’t have to be totally original, but it raises the question: how different should we make it? Should we scrap everything we know and play God and build from scratch? Should we shape and morph things that already exist? Or should we keep what everyone finds familiar? These questions can be asked when it comes to inventing anything for our worlds, but one such area in which it’s particularly prevalent is with language. In this new world of ours, does everyone speak the same language?

‘A Fantasy Writers’ Handbook’ Teaser: Dialogue

As you may or may not be aware, I'm in the process of drafting 'A Fantasy Writer's Handbook', a non-fiction guide to writing fiction, fantasy fiction in particular. The book is split into three parts: fiction writing, fantasy writing, and what to do when the writing is done. Today, as a little midweek treat, I thought I'd share one of the chapters from part one: Dialogue.

One of Them Yearly Reviews

A look back at a 2018 filled with twists and turns, and a glance into the hazy future of 2019

Getting To Grips With Passive Voice

A few weeks ago, I published the results of a bit of research looking at the writing ‘rules’ loathed most by writers. Topping that list was the rule: ‘never use the passive voice.’ This post deconstructs the passive voice in a bid to see why it's so loathed.

Keep on Truckin’

Writing can be like a game of snakes and ladders. You inch your way toward the top, only for a snake to appear and banish you to the pits of misery. That’s how it feels, anyway. What is the magic formula for success?

Plotting: The Crucible

The crucible is one of the simplest and most effective plotting tools. At its core is the relationship between the protagonist and the antagonist. The conflict they share spawns plot. It illustrates wonderfully the interwoven relationship enjoyed between character and plot.

The Essence of Science Fiction and Fantasy

Today I present a guest post by Ed White, writer of fantasy and science fiction. It's these two genres that his article focuses on, discussing their origins, their very essence, and, as Ed puts it, 'the legion' of sub-genres that have developed to make these genres two of the most exciting, inspirational and forward-thinking of all.

Turning to Art for Inspiration

Sometimes the ideas dry up. Trump's Wall blocks out creativity and all you can do is lament. A terrific solution to those droughts, I've found, is art

Online Writing Groups

The writing game can be a lonely one, but it doesn’t have to be that way. In fact, working with others can improve your writing tremendously. It can be quite tricky finding fellow writers nearby to meet up with, but the internet has made that a whole lot easier. Hundreds, if not thousands of writing groups exist online. No longer do writers have to sit alone in their bedroom reading work aloud to their cats. But it still can be quite difficult to find the right writing group for you. So here's a list of all those I’m aware of.