What screams “I’m generic’ when it comes to writing?

I don’t believe that the term ‘generic’ had much meaning when you are discussing authors and writing. Some of the best writing ever can be described as generic, cliche, and any other term you can think of that describes themes and characters that have been used so much that they can seem overused. Consider Shakespeare. …

Continue reading What screams “I’m generic’ when it comes to writing?

How can I use my life’s experiences to write short stories?

For many years I paid part of my family’s bills by writing confession stories. They are true stories and the author’s name is never given. I wondered how it would work using my own life experiences for stories. If I would be criticized. The funny thing is, the few times that family was there when …

Continue reading How can I use my life’s experiences to write short stories?

What should the first chapter of my fantasy novel contain?

It should contain what the first chapter of what every novel should contain: the seeds of the conclusion. It’s sometimes called the ‘author’s promise’ to the reader that they are about to read a book that will conclude with the solution to the problem that the beginning posited. That brings the beginning of the story …

Continue reading What should the first chapter of my fantasy novel contain?

How long can a fantasy novel go before introducing a villain? Does a story need a villain?

No story requires an actual villain but stories are normally about overcoming something and a villain fills the bill nicely. That said, introduce the villain as soon as possible. Characters introduced late in the story tend to be ignored by readers because they are used to having all important characters introduced early on so as …

Continue reading How long can a fantasy novel go before introducing a villain? Does a story need a villain?

So, I wrote a fiction novella draft. What now?

Now you turn that draft into a finished product, which can be done if you follow the steps that are outlined in lots of classes, books, videos, etc. They all go something like this (with individual variations, of course) : Make sure your story follows the steps of ‘The Hero’s Journey.’ That’s a book outlining …

Continue reading So, I wrote a fiction novella draft. What now?

How much time did it take to write your first novel (from start to finish)?

This question makes me chuckle because there’s no real answer. I suspect that most authors will say the same thing. It’s relatively easy to say how long your second novel took to write. Or your third. Or fourth. And so on. But your first? It took forever! Absolutely forever!, Because your first novel is a …

Continue reading How much time did it take to write your first novel (from start to finish)?