“Humor is the great thing, the saving thing. The minute it crops up, all our irritations and resentments slip away and a sunny spirit takes their place.” – Mark Twain “Humor is an almost physiological response to fear.” – Kurt Vonnegut “You can’t deny laughter, the sound of which has always seemed to me the […]
“What we want is a story that starts with an earthquake and builds to a climax.” – Samuel Goldwyn Fuck the weather! In recent months, I’ve come across more than a few books beginning with descriptions about the weather. Bad descriptions about the weather, at that; just shy of, “It was still dark and chilly […]
I recently finished Haruki Murakami’s memoir about running and writing, What I Talk About When I Talk About Running. While it’s much more about running than writing — even if you don’t like running — it’s worth reading if you write. The parallels between distance running and writing a novel are obvious even if you […]
“Writing is an exploration. You start from nothing and learn as you go.” – E.L. Doctorow * * * Writing well takes time to learn. One doesn’t sit down for a couple weeks and suddenly produce a bestseller. The time needed to produce 85,000 words of even bad writing takes longer than it takes most […]
“It is impossible to discourage the real writers — they don’t give a damn what you say, they’re going to write.” – Sinclair Lewis I’ve heard many working writers tell would-be writers that they should give up before ever really trying. There are many reasons for this: Some writers feel the industry is already too […]
“How vain it is to sit down to write when you have not stood up to live.” – Henry David Thoreau While a writer doesn’t have to pack it all up and move to a cabin in the middle of nowhere or travel to the far ends of the planet, it helps to have some […]
NaNoWriMo begins at 12:00 a.m. on November 1st. For the uninitiated, NaNoWriMo stands for National Novel Writing Month. Each November, over 100,000 people take a vow to write 50,000 words in 30 days. Less than 20% succeed. Fifty thousand words in one month is a challenge for even fulltime writers, let alone writers who are […]
“There are three rules for writing a novel. Unfortunately no one knows what they are.” – W. Somerset Maugham I know what they are: Put your ass in a chair. Write. Repeat often!