SF & F Troubleshooting: On Having a Day Job

This month’s guest author is Dale Bailey, a novelist, Clarion instructor, and English professor.  He is the author of House of Bones and The Fallen and innumerable short stories, and today he has a few words about why “quitting your day job” need not always be a professional writer’s goal. ——— When I was at…… Continue reading SF & F Troubleshooting: On Having a Day Job

Writing Prompt #16: Fake Conversations

Many books of writing advice suggest that authors visit public places – Starbucks, a park, outdoor cafes, etc., and write down people’s conversations.  The purpose of this activity is to familiarize writers with the indirect nature of speech.  People don’t talk in a straight line, and conversations don’t proceed back-and-forth like a tennis match. Famously,…… Continue reading Writing Prompt #16: Fake Conversations

Spec Tech: Learning Magic

It is not always obvious in the world created by the literature of magic that the young magician needs training. Hogwarts, of course. Lev Grossman, true. But Earthsea and Middle-earth: those magicians needed seasoning, not schooling. I am here to tell you that training is important, at least if you live on dull earth where…… Continue reading Spec Tech: Learning Magic