Category Archives: novels

5 Things to Help Kill the Winter Blues and Write Children’s Books

Look at me! I’m writing! It’s been a good, solid, busy year, but I’ve been having pangs….nonblogging pangs.  Luckily, it’s about this time of year people start to resolve to stuff and commit to things. So I’m committing. And when my three-year-old post about the winter blues resurfaced, I figured it was time to get [...]

Why Setting Is Important

When properly handled, setting reveals not just where the characters are, but who they are.  What’s your home town? Where have you lived since? What if you’d never been to any of those places? What would you be and how would you think?  See that? The setting forms the character and the story. And yet, [...]

The Bone Season: Samantha Shannon’s Story

I always think it’s inspiring to hear about an author’s road to publication. Here’s Samantha Shannon talking about her first failed effort and eventual success with The Bone Season.

Dialogue Tags: Just Say “Said”

…or asked. I’ve been thinking a lot about dialogue tags lately and how common it is for new writers to want to “mix it up.” It’s not necessary. If it’s not clear who is speaking and you need a tag, use the most straight-forward one:  ”asked” or “said” as needed. If it feels necessary to [...]


I’m a tad late in bringing this up, but it must be noted that George Orwell’s 1984 was at the top of Amazon’s list this week, with sales rising over 5,000%. Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World is #1 right now. I would love to know how many teachers are using Edward Snowden’s revelations as an [...]