Permission to Write Something That Sucks

It’s been one month since I’ve looked at my novel draft. Despite setting myself a lofty goal of completing a first draft by the end of the year, I stalled out. As much as I would like (and have tried) to blame my characters or my word count goals or the ergonomics of my keyboard,Continue reading “Permission to Write Something That Sucks”

Lies, Damn Lies and Fiction

Two years ago, I read a short story I had written called “The Cannibals of Kitsap.” The story follows a boy who develops an eating disorder after his father loses his job. After the reading, a woman walked up to ask me how the story ended. “Did your father find another job after that,” sheContinue reading “Lies, Damn Lies and Fiction”

So You Think You Want to Freelance…

So, you think you want to take up freelance writing. I’ve been in your shoes. It’s exciting, but a little nerve wracking. It feels like you’re stepping free from the shackles of 9-to-5 work and into the warm sunlight of creative freedom. But before you embark on this journey, I’d like to offer my perspective.Continue reading “So You Think You Want to Freelance…”

The Secret of the Masters

For regular readers of this blog, what I’m about to write is going to seem strange. Last week, I wrote about not feeling qualified to give writing advice. Today, I’m going to give some writing advice. Let’s roll with it. How do you get to be really good at something? Not just average; more thanContinue reading “The Secret of the Masters”

Let Your Characters Speak for Themselves

Some writers are afraid of dialogue. I used to be one of them. I would write page after page of brilliant narrative — crisp details and settings so real you could smell the ponderosa pine sap on the thin mountain air — without a single line of dialogue. I was terrified to let my charactersContinue reading “Let Your Characters Speak for Themselves”

Torn Sleeves: 5 Things I Learned About Writing in 2012

This was a big year for me. I graduated from college, moved into an apartment by myself and tried to sell my fiction. This was a year of major successes and humbling failures. I hope you will learn from my mistakes (and I hope I do, too). So, without further ado, here are the topContinue reading “Torn Sleeves: 5 Things I Learned About Writing in 2012”