Archive for October, 2011

The Skill List Project: Plot Flow

This is another post in The Skill List Project: an attempt to list all the skills involved in writing and selling fiction, particularly science fiction and fantasy. Last time around, I talked about overall plot structure, and how to develop a starting seed into a plot…but I was working on the “big picture” level: the […]

The Secrets of Good Blogging

Last week, I wrote a post asking whether writers should blog, and why. I wanted to write a follow-up for the hypothetical writer whose thought things over and decided to go for it. Having made that choice, what next? Here’s the thing. Blogging is basically self-publishing, with all of the advantages and disadvantages that come with it. […]

Works In Progress

I’ll be teaching this weekend at the South Carolina Writer’s Workshop Annual Conference.  It’s an event I’ve done before and one I love at attend.  Great people, talented writers, and a welcoming community. One of the topics I’ll be covering in the course of several panels and workshops I’ll be running is self-editing and revisions, […]

Research for writers, #3: LCSH and friends

Sometimes, the things you need to research are the sort where you need more than Wikipedia. You need not just facts, but context or analysis: not the bare bones of what happened in Valley Forge, but a sense of what it was like to live through that winter. Not a three-paragraph account of what started […]

What Is YA?

My post last month, Is Harry Potter YA?, turned into a more general discussion of the definition of YA in the comments, so I decided I might as well continue the discussion this month. I first heard the term Young Adult applied to books in the early ‘70s. It described fiction written for adolescents, who weren’t […]

Author Information

James Alan Gardner

James Alan Gardner got his M.Math from the University of Waterloo with a thesis on black holes...and then he immediately started writing science fiction instead. He's been a finalist for the Hugo and Nebula awards, and has won the Theodore Sturgeon Memorial Award as well as the Aurora award (twice). He's published seven novels (beginning with "Expendable"), plus a short story collection and (for street cred) a Lara Croft book. He cares deeply about words and sentences, and is working his way up to paragraphs. Visit site.

Jim C. Hines

Jim C. Hines' latest book is THE SNOW QUEEN'S SHADOW, the fourth of his fantasy adventures that retell the old fairy tales with a Charlie's Angels twist. He's also the author of the humorous GOBLIN QUEST trilogy. Jim's short fiction has appeared in more than 40 magazines and anthologies, including Realms of Fantasy, Turn the Other Chick, and Sword & Sorceress XXI. Jim lives in Michigan with his wife and two children. He's currently hard at work on LIBRIOMANCER, the first book in a new fantasy series. Visit site.

David B. Coe

David B. Coe ( is the Crawford award-winning author of the LonTobyn Chronicle, the Winds of the Forelands quintet, the Blood of the Southlands trilogy, and a number of short stories. Writing as D.B. Jackson (, he is the author of the Thieftaker Chronicles, a blend of urban fantasy, mystery, and historical fiction. David is also part of the Magical Words group blog (, and co-author of How To Write Magical Words: A Writer’s Companion. In 2010 he wrote the novelization of director Ridley Scott’s movie, Robin Hood. His books have been translated into more than a dozen languages. Visit site.

Marie Brennan

Marie Brennan is the author of more than forty short stories and seven novels, the most recent of which is the urban fantasy Lies and Prophecy. Visit site.

S.C. Butler

Butler is the author of The Stoneways Trilogy from Tor Books: Reiffen's Choice, Queen Ferris, and The Magician's Daughter. Find out what Reiffen does with magic, and what magic does with him... Visit site.



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