What are we looking for?

Arisia 2019 was a veritable feast of writing workshops and reading recommendations. One of the most fun things I got out of it was a list I compiled of things readers (in a variety of panel audiences) were looking for that they don’t see enough of: 1 – protagonists who are moms 2 – female…

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Arisia 2019: January 18-21

The Arisia schedule is bursting with relevant writing and reading panels this year, from “Female Relationships in Fiction” and “Where’s Our Fromance?” about why stories are less likely to show female friendships than male ones (and what we can do about this), to “Writing the Unseen: The Supernatural in Fiction” and “Embracing the Alien: Writing…

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The Comparison Gap

I attended a writing workshop over the weekend led by someone trained in the Amherst Writers & Artists Method, which basically states that anyone can write, everyone is creative and unique, and we can all learn to improve through positive feedback alone. The workshop was a fascinating and respectful experience, with a great group of…

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Symbols have power

I attended a panel at Arisia a couple of years ago about empathy as a form of extrasensory perception (akin to telepathy or other psychic abilities). I remember being surprised when someone dressed in a PsiCorps cosplay from Babylon 5 walked into the room. I had seen this person around the con earlier, and while…

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Leading on paper, following online

I recently attended two local July events strongly associated with a verbally creative community: Readercon in Quincy, MA, and the New England Authors Expo in Danvers, MA.  I was intrigued by the similarities and differences in both subject and tone, especially considering one is named for readers and the other for authors.  It revealed a…

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Blurbs, book covers, and bowling

I’m good at writing. I practice a lot. I don’t feel that I’m great at summarizing my writing, whether with teasers or blurbs or even a face-to-face description. I don’t feel that I’m great at designing covers, either, and although I know there are other people willing to do both those things for me (in…

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Finding the meaning

What’s the point?  In life and in writing, I ask myself this a lot.  One of the ways I challenge myself to get through a story is to focus on how fun the next one will be.  “Okay,” I tell myself, “this story may not seem significant, but I should keep going and finish it…

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Identity in Fiction

There’s such potential in fiction to educate and inform, and sometimes I feel like this gets overlooked in the rush to create things that are new and different.  Some science fiction comes with a message, a parallel drawn in speculation of the future to familiar issues our society is facing today. But stories can be…

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