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Defense Against the Dark Arts – Writer’s Block Edition

Help! I’m Stuck at 10K Words! First of all, don’t panic. Ten thousand words is nothing to sneeze at and you’re well on your way towards a complete novel. In fact, congratulations are in order. Normally when my brain stops sending typing instructions to my fingertips it’s because there is something it’s still working on. Some piece of information is missing like what comes next or what should the main character do now that she’s…

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Blog Fictorians On Writing

The Author’s Law of Momentum

Have you ever had someone toss you a watermelon? The big ones are tough to catch because they can slip out of your hands due to momentum. Similarly, finishing a writing project and holding a copy in your hand is always a good feeling that’s tough to hang on to when you have to figure out what to write next, but what about the momentum of that event? Newton’s Second Law loosely says that the…

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Blog On Writing Tech Talk for Authors

Author Tools and Limitless Funds

I recently had someone ask me about Scrivener and other writing tools. They were interested in my opinion of their usefulness as an established author and whether they should purchase some of the tools folks are discussing on sites like Facebook. Scrivener is a great tool but it has a bit of a learning curve. It allows you to organize complex novels or trilogies and have important character and worldbuilding information at your fingertips. If…

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Fictorians On Writing

It Takes a Village (Full of Weirdos)

I’ve been writing off and on since 1977. More off than on, just like my normal mental state. The first few stories I horrifically assembled were based on some dreams with the antics of some of my friends mixed in. I was still in high school and I hung out with the freaks, geeks, and weirdos. I also spent time with some of the stoner and drug using folks, even though I never partook. (No,…

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Fictorians On Writing

Adding Sexual Tension

Sexual tension can always be expected in any romance or erotica story, but it can always work as a major or subordinate plot point for your speculative fiction work. While the ideas I point out here are not specific to any genre, they can be used in any work to spice things up. So what exactly is sexual tension? It’s not people and/or aliens going at it like Captain Kirk and the green-skinned Orion woman.…

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Blog Conventions Fictorians On Writing

To Con or Not to Con: The Write Question

For years, I’ve gone to conventions all over the continental United States. Some were genre conventions such as MileHiCon, Radcon, and Archon. Others were more media-centric, such as Denver Comic Con and Salt Lake Comic Con. Toss in a World Horror and a few writing conventions such as Superstars Writing Seminars and you’re looking at most of my traveling expenses over the years. I’ve decided to pull back on the conventions this year. I’m only…

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Fictorians On Writing

Using Autocrit.com for Initial Editing

I’ve mentioned Autocrit.com on panels at conventions. It’s a very useful tool that can assist any author when they’re polishing up their manuscript. Even when I’m about to send something off to an editor or getting ready to upload a submission, I usually run it through Autocrit first. It finds many common problems and does a decent first-pass analysis of my work. For example, it flagged the fact that I used “first” too many times…

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author website tips & tricks Blog Marketing

Fake Twitter Accounts

One of the things authors do is to blindly accept every Twitter follower that falls within their gravitational well. After all, it does look like you have a huge following when someone visits your Twitter profile. Unfortunately, people can see what percentage of your followers and folks you follow are made up of bogus accounts. This is not an accurate count, since most of the services that dig through your lists count things like no…

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