Writing Craft

Ten Mistakes in World Building

I recently watched a YouTube video entitled “Ten Mistakes in World Building,” created by Ellen Brock. I myself have made a list of ten mistakes. Do you have anything to add? Leave a comment or let me know on my Facebook page. Ten Mistakes in World Building 1. Religion – Usually only Christian tradition. Only…

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Help Review Shelter of Leaves!

Hello friends, Honest book reviews are important. They help readers decide what to buy, and they help authors reach more readers. If you’ve read Shelter of Leaves, I’d appreciate your posting a review to my Amazon Author Page, Goodreads page, or both. Once on my respective author pages, you’ll see where others have posted their…

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Triggering a Map of the Imagination

“I’ll draw another mental map and build a city entirely with ice-covered pink stones…” On February 3, I wrote a blog post for the San Diego Book Review, entitled “Triggering a Map of the Imagination.” Check out the excerpt below and let me know what you think! I ride in the cozy car world of dashboard…

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Life in Other Worlds

“My first attempt at novel writing began in a ridiculous way…” On December 20, I wrote a blog post for the San Diego Book Review, entitled “Life in Other Worlds.” Check out the excerpt below and let me know what you think! A fiction writer joins the world they create. Occasionally a friend has suggested…

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Writing: Early On

“…stories were always with me, floating through my mind, collecting.” On October 28, I wrote a blog post for the San Diego Book Review, entitled “Writing: Early On.” Check out the excerpt below and let me know what you think! My father, a jovial, patient man, made paintings, mostly watercolors and pen and ink drawings. He…

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Names: Clues to Character

Names are important. In my novel, Shelter of Leaves, names carry meaning. The first paragraph below is an excerpt from the deleted prologue. Beside her swimming pool, Elaine closed her eyes against the sun. She imagined a drifting boat flanked by trees; crimson, marigold and burnt sienna leaves spun to the ground. Brilliant leaves signaled…

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Survival: Dreams

Annie Dillard, the Pulitzer Prize winning essayist, in answer to a question from the audience about what is needed to become a writer, gave an answer, obvious, yet profound. It surprised me. She replied that the writer has to do more than live out in the world. In a firm voice she declared, “Our minds…

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Writer’s Block

I’ve been thinking about writer’s block. Grateful I don’t have it now, yet in the early writing days I was plagued by my harsh critic. My own expectations were sky high, the need to sound writerly came out sounding stilted. A too tight pair of designer jeans. When our clothes are too tight we don’t…

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How My Book Began

My father painted watercolors, wrote poetry and carved large sculptures from logs. Often I watched him work in his studio. When I was five he started taking me to museums and art galleries. We discussed the work. His answer to my incessant questions was: Use your imagination. While riding in the car I turned the…

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