I’ve heard it said that in this post-print day and age of dwindling attention spans, books should be kept short. Why slug away writing an 80,000 word tome when it’ll sell online for the exact same price as a book half that length? In a way, none of this is really new. Even in the… More Are we returning to the age of short books?
I got to see the movie Battleship (2012) on TV the other week. I’d eschewed it on first release because it looked dumb on so many levels. And I wasn’t disappointed. The dumbness was monolithic. I suppose any story that’s been squeezed out of a game is going to have problems. Add the inevitable studio requirements… More Stories of aliens versus us are really commenting on our own dark side
One of the many pitfalls novice novellists fall into is the up-front info dump. That’s where the character arc gets interrupted by a blast of back-story, world-description, character biographies and so forth. It brings the story to a screeching halt, and it was death to pace even in the old days of print. These days,… More Avoiding the writers’ up-front info dump
My new phone’s censoring my favourite Anglo Saxon. And I think that’s ducking stupid. I mean, it’s literally ducking stupid – not the thing you thought I was euphemising. Let me explain. I have quite a vocabulary of Anglo Saxon, which I use a lot in the real world. I like some of those words so much I… More My ducking phone censors me, damon it
When it comes to writing fiction, the ‘point of view’ an author chooses counts for a great deal. Differing points of view have differing strengths for differing purposes. Today I’m looking at the locked third person. This is almost the same as first person singular, in that the entire story is told from the narrative… More Points of view for writers – third person locked
One of the first things an author has to do when setting up a story or novel is figure out the point of view. There are all sorts – first person singular, third person locked (which is essentially the same thing, sort of), third person multi, and ‘eye of god’. Selection needs a good deal… More Points of view for writers – first person singular
English is an amazing language. It has a vocabulary of over a million words, and counting. It got there by leeching many of them off other languages – Latin, Anglo Saxon (which produced some of my favourite words, except I don’t use them a lot on this blog), French, German, Scandinavian and so on. Basically,… More Cutesy neologisms needle me, sometimes