Writing Craft

Once More With Feeling: Revision Series

My amazing YA author-in-awesomeness Heather Demetrios (with whom I’m hosting the Pneuma 2018 Writing Retreat) has put together and AH-MAZING interview series all about revision called: Once More With Feeling! If you fear revision, psyche yourself out, or feel like you have to write a perfect first draft, then this series is for you. Revision…

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Bring on 2018!

Happy New Year friends! I can’t believe it’s almost 2018! Where did the year go? And where have I been? Holy-you-didn’t-blog-for-months-Batman! It’s true. I’ve been distracted. I took a job teaching 9th and 10th grade English at a local high school and BOY-OH-BOY I have mad respect for teachers. This job is HARD! I want…

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Video: What Is Profluence?

Have you heard of this fancy MFA creative writing term called profluence? Proflu-whaaaaaat? Yep, it’s a complete mouthful! Profluence is a big scholarly MFA word that I’d never heard of until I was in creative writing school. It’s coined by John Gardner and it refers to the overall connective tissue, flow and energy of your novel,…

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Killing Your Darlings

You know those scenes that you LOOOOOOOVE, but you feel like you can’t cut? You know the ones. They’re the scenes that turn you into a frothing angry velociraptor when someone suggests you might cut them. The scenes your beta-readers keep mentioning might not be necessary, and you’ve pretty much lost all faith in your beta readers…

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How The Film MOONLIGHT Breaks The Rules

The film MOONLIGHT claimed top prizes by winning the Academy Awards for best picture and best screenplay last month. This film is brilliant. And in my opinion, much of that brilliance comes from the fact that it broke so MANY conventional writing “rules” that we’ve been told again and again. It broke those rules –…

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How to Master Story Structure

The number one thing I learned from screenwriting is story structure. Robert McKee, author of STORY, explains that there are two kinds of talent: story talent and literary talent. Most writers focus on literary talent … which are the words, the phrases, and how you use them. Often, literary talent is what we’re taught in creative…

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