May 30, 2018


Take all your characters and force them into a theoretical dance club. Make them stand so they form a circle in the middle of them. Now play this song:

As the author, stand back and watch. Who among your characters seizes this opportunity and busts out a few move...

April 9, 2018

There are only 2 forces in this world: what we make happen by our own two hands (we drive the car) and the random acts we react to (we get hit by a car).

REACTIVE PLOT LINE: Bob must walk one block to Grandma’s house. Two steps out his front door, a dog bites his leg. H...

February 19, 2018

Us writers love to introduce beautiful characters. It’s poetic and tugs at our heartstrings when a dashing cowboy struts into the scene, and get all melty when the heroine winks while biting her lip. Both are beautiful.

But the secretary is beautiful too, and the side c...

January 6, 2018

Have a looooooooooong chapter and want to cut it but don’t know where?

Cut the chapter right when you blast the reader with surprise, suspense, or strain for maximum effect.


     Herten woke.

     And he knew.

    Panic lanced th...

December 27, 2017

The age-old debate…to wear pants, or not to wear pants? Oh, that’s not the debate…? Maybe it’s…to outline or not to outline (but that just sounds SO much less curious.)

What is a pantster? A writer who scripts stories by the seat of their pants without any clear thought...

December 21, 2017

I didn’t think this was an issue, but after reading so many books, both by published authors and author-hopefuls, I realize it’s not only an issue, it has become an ACCEPTABLE NORM, which I think is very, very sad.

This is so important to me that I actually stopped in t...

December 21, 2017

What is a story rule? It is that rule which you create in your character and/or plot that is never to be broken. Example: RULE - a man wears a mask because no one is allowed to see his face. SO WHAT DOES THAT MEAN? – it means he always wears a mask. Because no one is a...

December 11, 2017

I’m editing an old favorite story of mine – THE LOST GODS (16 years in the making. It’s gone through about 3 massive overhauls already.) I’m just about ready to send it off to beta readers after this last edit. A quick backstory before I continue: I have a character, M...

November 30, 2017

I am a Christian, as I stated before in my sister blog post: Christianity and Literary Sex Scenes. I was raised to believe in doing what is right, and to distinguish that which is right from wrong. I do not condone the torture of any living persons or animals of any ki...

July 28, 2017

I shared a blog post to my Facebook writer’s group. In this blog I said, “And in all things, writing must be realistic.”

A fellow writer commented, “No, it mustn't! Real life is boring and mostly doesn't happen as we want it to. The hero saving the day at the last secon...

July 25, 2017

As a Christian there is a negative connotation when it comes to sex. It is often portrayed as being, “Inappropriate to talk about,” or “bad” to a certain extent. I have been Christian all my life and I was taught to wait until marriage to have sex, and I did just that....

July 22, 2017

I’m Christian. I’ll even go so far as to say I’m LDS so I abstain from smoking, alcohol, premarital sex, and swearing. I also have a super guilty conscience, which helps drives my day-to-day while staying in line with my beliefs.

I’m an author. I write characters who sm...

July 20, 2017

I’m an avid reader of fantasy books. I’m also an avid writer of fantasy books. And, what the heck, I’m also an avid enthusiast about maps in fantasy books. I own a lot of the Dragonlance books. I even have a map of Skyrim hanging in my hallway and a map of Maui right a...

June 2, 2017

This review a beta reader gave me changed my writing life forever: “I am not a major fan of the words "had' and "that" and eliminate them when possible."

He was reading my novel, The War Queen (before publication, still in its editing stage) and offered that suggestion....

June 2, 2017

I was beta reading for someone, and I asked them, “Is this your first draft? If not, what draft number are you on?” And his reply, “I don’t keep my first drafts. This is probably around the 3rd or so.”

WHAT! You don’t keep your first draft? WHY?

...............Well, why...

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