Some tropes we just love. We've seen them 8 million times and we'll happily see them again...if they're done right. This series explores good and bad tropes in books, film, anime, and video games. What was the very first twist ending? I'm guessing it was the whole Jesus-came-back-to-life moment, but plot twists are some of … Continue reading Trope Teardown: Good Twist, Bad Twist, Cheap Twist, Seuss Joke
Yes, yes, the official term is three-way Venn Diagram, but that's not nearly as catchy. Look across the great villains of art history, in film, in movies, in video games, in anime, in anything at all, you'll find three major themes that the writers exploited. All great villains have one, two, or even all three … Continue reading The Venn-Triagram of Great Villains
I'm a writer and editor. I know the rules. Don't use "felt." Don't use "very." Don't use "-ly" words. Don't use adverbs at all if you can help it. Don't use to-be verbs. Show, don't tell. Don't use flashbacks. Start in scene. Don't use passive voice. These are all good rules. But there's one more … Continue reading Writing Extremes are Always BS.
Ever notice how something can get so bad that it achieves a life of its own and gets exponentially worse the longer it goes? I'm sure it has a fancy, scientific name, but I call it "Compound Suck." The more crap there is in a book, the more that crap starts to link together, each … Continue reading “Compound Suck,” and How to Avoid it In Your Writing
I freaking hate the concept of "branding." It sounds so corporate, so money-hungry, so un-artistic. That and I suck at it. That may have jaded me a little. If you're new to the writing world, or art in general, your "brand" is whatever you're selling. As an artist, you're selling what you create, but also … Continue reading A Creator’s Journey #19–Who Are You?
I've never been shy about being a Christian writer who dips into adult content. The Bible is Rated R, so there's more leeway than you think. And I'm certainly not writing to children, not this time at least. Plus, I self-published this novella. I can make my own rules, right? So...why did I change my tune … Continue reading Why I Cut Some Adult Content out of my Adult Book
Allegory is one of the most famous Christian fiction genres out there, and one in a hundred writers can pull off well. So how do you write your own allegory? What do the greats have in common? I have a few tips on a guest post on Speculativefaith.com. Click here to check that out and … Continue reading How to Write Good Allegory
"Noooo! No! No! Nononono, NYOOOO!!!" I wailed. My toddler son stared in confusion. What had caused his poor father to cry out in utter dismay? I was reading a novel, and two young-adult characters had just met and just started bickering. It was going to be one of those novels. And I was a contest … Continue reading Fighting vs. Bickering in Romance Stories