Writing Process – (Don’t) Just Dive In

Writing Process – (Don’t) Just Dive In

Just diving in doesn’t work. How do I know? Because it’s my default approach to writing, and I have boxes (and hard drives) full of unfinished stories. But allow me to clarify: By “diving in” I mean writing before your premise has fully percolated. When I have a...
Writing Process – Stingy

Writing Process – Stingy

I have a tendency to write lean — as in close-to-the-bone. In my college days, I was compared to Hemingway from time time, not because I was as good as him, but because I was similarly stingy with detail. I haven’t dissected why it is I’m so terse, but I have three...
Writing Process – It Takes Two 2

Writing Process – It Takes Two 2

I don’t know George R. R. Martin, and I would not presume to speak for him. I am, however, willing to speculate about his motives and processes. It seems to me — and I could be wrong — that Martin is a fan of the father of the High Fantasy genre, J.R.R. Tolkien. That...
Writing Process – It Takes Two

Writing Process – It Takes Two

One idea isn’t enough. If you’re writing fiction, you need two or more concepts in order to have a viable premise. But they can’t be just any old concepts. Preferably, they should be ideas in opposition to one another or which interact in such a way to generate plot...
Writing Process – For Want of a Want

Writing Process – For Want of a Want

Too much is made in writing how-to literature of the main character’s Want, the motivator which propels him through his story. In describing this force in terms of a desire, would-be writing gurus are doing their readers a disservice. Most heroes, I would argue, are...