writing advice


Writing Fear and Suspense with Jenna Moreci

Ah, writing. The act itself can be one wrought with fear and suspense. As much as perfection and the validation that comes with knowing it all would be comforting, no one will ever be done improving. I wouldn't have it any other way, even on the days where I'm staring at a blank cursor wondering if I even know what words are anymore. There is so much to love in that struggle. I love the challenge of pushing myself to think about story in a new way. I love staring off into space, wondering how to tell the story. I love the challenge of knowing it will never be exac[...]


Plot Your Novel – Nightmare, or Thrill Ride?

Should you plot your novel, or dive in and pants it? What is the right way to outline? What is a plot, even? “Plot is people. Human emotions and desires founded on the realities of life, working at cross purposes, getting hotter and fiercer as they strike against each other until finally there’s an explosion—that’s Plot.” —Leigh Brackett There are as many ways to write a book as there are books. Notice I said "books", and not writers. Because it is likely that every book you write will be a little different. Sometimes your method for getting it done[...]


Bad Writing as Inspiration: Happy Birthday to Me!

It’s my birthday today! So, because I love you all very much, I sat down and watched the seriously terrible 1981 slasher film Happy Birthday To Me. It’s bad. Really bad. And not even in that “so bad it’s good way”. Nope, just bad. But the film did leave me thinking about what we can learn from bad writing. By studying the places the script for Happy Birthday to Me went so horribly off the rails, what lessons can we apply to our own stories, particularly within gory tales of suspense and murder? (This review/analysis is going to be full of spoilers, but[...]