Category: Dubious Writing Advice

Write to Revise: My WIP Checklist

This week, I started the second revision of my WIP novel Hell to Play.┬áThis is the big revision/rewrite before I start shopping it around, and it will be driven by the comments and notes from my three excellent critique partners (bless you, you wonderful… Continue Reading “Write to Revise: My WIP Checklist”

Not Good Enough: When to Trunk a Story

Recently, I went through my WIP folder and realized it was overflowing with stories, some of which had been languishing there for decades. I took a good, long look at these derelict shorts and flashes, and, well, I then created a trunk folder, which… Continue Reading “Not Good Enough: When to Trunk a Story”

100 Submissions Per Year: Why I Do It

I’m a goal-oriented person, and I like to set fairly difficult goals for myself. One of those goals is 100 short story submissions per year, which I’ve been aiming at it for the last five years straight. Let me tell you a little about… Continue Reading “100 Submissions Per Year: Why I Do It”

My New & Improved Flash Fiction Formula

I write a lot of flash fiction, and I’ve been lucky enough to publish a good amount of it. In fact, I recently published and entire anthology. The Molotov Cocktail collected 40 of my best flashes in a collection titled Night Walk & Other… Continue Reading “My New & Improved Flash Fiction Formula”

My Ever-Elusive Muse or Writing When I Don’t Want To

A topic I see come up a fair bit in writerly circles is the question of whether you should write only when you’re in the mood, i.e., feeling inspired, creative, and so on. Some writers do only write when their muses are sitting on… Continue Reading “My Ever-Elusive Muse or Writing When I Don’t Want To”

Write What You Know: I Just Work Here

One of my favorite books about the craft is Stephen King’s On Writing. It’s chocked full of interesting anecdotes and useful tidbits about King’s approach to the written word (definitely check it out if you haven’t already). Much of that book has stuck with… Continue Reading “Write What You Know: I Just Work Here”

First Draft vs. Revision: One Plotter’s Preference

Writing a novel is a process of many individual steps, but all those steps generally fall under two very broad stages: drafting and revising. Just about every author I know prefers one or the other, and I thought I’d share a little about my… Continue Reading “First Draft vs. Revision: One Plotter’s Preference”

Withdrawing a Withdrawal: A Submission Saga

I often encounter a general sense among authors that magazine editors are waiting to pounce on them if they make a mistake or need to ask for an appropriate allowance in the submission process. The belief is that an error or request will result… Continue Reading “Withdrawing a Withdrawal: A Submission Saga”

Hook Shot: Still More Fun With First Lines

One of my absolute favorite blog topics is analyzing the first lines of my short stories and trying to divine whether a good one helps you get published. This all stems from a fantastic essay written by Stephen King called “Great Hookers I Have… Continue Reading “Hook Shot: Still More Fun With First Lines”

Good as New: Evaluating Fledgling Publishers

I covered this topic back in 2016, and I think it’s due for an update. In the last four years, I’ve seen a lot of genre markets come and go (one that showed up and disappeared almost overnight), and there are some things I… Continue Reading “Good as New: Evaluating Fledgling Publishers”

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