Today's guest is dark fantasy author Tracie McBride, renowned for her reality-twisting short stories. What do you enjoy most about writing fantasy fiction? The license to make stuff up! How would you describe the flavour of your fiction in five words? An Amazon reviewer gave me the first three adjectives – disturbing, surreal, otherworldly. I … Continue reading INTERVIEW: DARK FANTASY AUTHOR TRACIE MCBRIDE
In vino veritas, isn't that what they say? From wine comes truth. From the drunk comes enlightenment. Bullshit, in my view. Absolute bullshit. What I said last night wasn't truth, wasn't enlightenment. Nothing more than sludge emerged from the drunk slug I'd been. Not as bad as that idiot, Jon, though. Jon the Judas, the … Continue reading Short Story: Cup of Wine
A short short story: -It’s 2245 on Monday 4 July 2022. My name is Detective Inspector Jan Bricker, and with me is Sergeant Milnet and George Dulmer. Please state your name and address for the record, George. -Why am I here? -Come on, George. You’re not under arrest. We just want to have a chat. … Continue reading A Pitched Effort
Princess Pepsi, farewell, my friend, until we meet again
Salt Lake Blues Pink lakes are down south. There's a red lake on the south-east coast. Here, in the badlands of salty sands and nothing to hold water on the surface, there's only the blue salts. Like a cloud of colour. Insubstantial drifts of colour. Blue, the type of blue that comes with summer skies, … Continue reading It’s a Story this Week
This is a great story, and although I didn’t want to like Dahoud I ended up desperately wanting him to come through as the man he fought to become – and I’ll be doing a short review next week!
This is a guest post by Rayne Hall. You may know Rayne from her successful Writer’s Craft series. And you may remember how we wrote together Copywriting: Get Paid to Write Promotional Texts. Rayne is also the author of Storm Dancer, one of the finest fantasy books I’ve ever read. It features a flawed hero, which is the subject of her post. The book will be on a special 99c offer until April 30, 2022, to celebrate the launch of the new edition.
I like characters with weaknesses, because they’re like real people, and their flaws make the story vivid. What would Charles Dicken’s tale ‘A Christmas Carol’ be without the sour stinginess of Scrooge, or Jane Austen’s ‘Pride and Prejudice’ without Mr. Darcy’s arrogance?
Unlike those dull characters who are already perfect at the novel’s start, flawed heroes need to learn lessons, often difficult and…
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They're going to offer feedback, but if they don't know what you want, it may not be as useful as you'd like. Make it easy on them. Give a list of questions at the end, or at the end of chapters/scenes. Some things are going to be specific about the story, but a lot will … Continue reading How to Make the Most of a Beta Reader
It's an expectation that a story will be filled with conflict and tension, but what does it mean? What is the difference? How to outline it in a plan? Let's start with the big player in the game: Conflict Conflict is the trouble caused by the things that get in the way of a goal. … Continue reading Conflict –> Tension
Rayne has a couple of stories in the Among the Headstones anthology. I'm going to do a review of Behind Him. This interview was provided for me, written by Rayne (I'm sure I've said enough about the problem with RSI, tendonosis, arfuritis, etc. with my thumbs, wrists and stuff) and I'm very pleased to show you her … Continue reading Rayne Hall – Author Interview and Review
A few things brought this to the fore. If you've heard about our dog, Pepsi, you know she's at a stage of her life where quality is lacking and she suffers. It's not at the stage yet where she's ready to give up and she fakes her ability to move and run and jump (she … Continue reading The Melancholy of Reminiscence