Last week I retrieved the last of my publishing licenses from Penguin Random House. Yeah, I know. Most authors crawl over broken glass to get a contract with PRH or one of the other big houses. Me? I’ve been asking for my contracts back. I had over thirty of them, all for out-of-print books which, … More Hot titles from my writing past – and they’re baaaaack!
It always intrigues me that ‘writing’, to most people, appears to be ‘writing fiction’. Time and again I’ll see stuff on social media pivoting on that idea – ‘writers – what’s your character arc?’, or ‘what’s your latest plot twist’ or whatever. Whereas non-fiction writing is always seen as a secondary product of expertise in … More Why even non-fiction has to tell a story
One of the hardest things about writing is selling it to readers – especially today, where the old gatekeepers have gone and the web is full of writing that, once upon a time, would have been relegated to a publisher’s slush pile. The challenge for readers is finding the good stuff. And that’s where a … More Getting the right promotion for your story
November is just about over, and all things being equal, NaNoWriMo participants should end up with something like a ‘bad first draft’ at the end of that writing month. Which is very cool, because a bad first draft is better than no first draft. That sounds like an old aphorism, but it’s absolutely true, because … More Ten steps in book writing after the first draft’s done
It’s been interesting to read some of the reader comments (‘reviews’) of my novella ‘Missionary’, which was published in the first volume of the Endless Worlds anthology series last year. I deliberately wrote it as a homage to dieselpunk – specifically, 1950s atomic-age dieselpunk of the kind written by Heinlein and Clarke. The starship had … More An insight into reader reviews of your books
So there you are with the plan you’ve made for your National Novel Writing Month story – all 50,000 words of it. You sit down at the computer. And – Nothing. Sticking on starting is normal. It happens to writers a lot. But that winking cursor and blank page isn’t going to go away by … More Getting NaNoWriMo going with a roar on its first day
I have often railed about the misuse of ‘word count’ as a single measure of result for writers. I see the misconception all the time in word-o-meters on blog sites, on Facebook posts where people ask each other how much they’ve written, and so on. To me it’s like actors going around comparing the number … More What ‘word count’ really means for writers