The Writing Life: Managing Priorities

Life has recently gotten a lot busier for me. I’ve started a new job. I’ve set a final editorial schedule for my next book. I’ve got a panel to moderate at Denver Comic Con. Each of these three things takes up time, and mental energy. I have a lot to learn, a lot to do, …

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The Writing Life: Finding Yourself Involved in a Comic Con

So a while ago you will recall I chatted on Jesper Schmidt’s YouTube channel about Morality in World building. See it here, if you missed it! My blog series on morality in fantasy starts here. Well, he mentioned that it was not a topic he’d ever come across when discussing fantasy fiction before, so I …

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Why I Write Fantasy: The Recurring Ideas That Won’t Let Go

I write fantasy stories because ideas for them keep popping into my head, almost always when I am in no position to write them down or record them. Life’s ironic like that. When I’m half-awake is a classic, that’s when ideas for dramatic situations come to me, cliffhangers without the set up that my still …

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The Writing Life: Doubts Part 5: How I Made My Peace with Doubt (Or: How I Reduced Doubt to the Guerilla War Option Only. Or: Be The Shark)

That’s a lengthly title. But for me an accurate one. I have not defeated doubt, I have not cast it into the outer darkness to lie impotent and weeping. I have, like the demon in my book, cut it down to a manageable size, and reduced it to fighting me at the page by page …

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The Writing Life: Hey, Aren’t You Writing a Book?

Why yes, yes I am. Except I had this deadline for a first draft that expired in January, unmet. I think the gods are mocking me for answering a goodreads question about writer’s block and saying “I don’t really suffer from it, but here’s what I do when it kind of strikes…” Bazinga! It struck, …

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The Writing Life: Doubts Part 4: Procrastination, The Thief of Time

I’m going to try to keep this one brief. You know, because I’ve got things to do. In this fourth installment of the doubt series, (Here are one, two and three) I’d like to say that procrastination can be a profound expression of doubt, of fear holding us back. I held myself back for 25+ …

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Why I Write Fantasy: To Appear on YouTube talking about Morality in Fantasy World Building, Obviously

Brace yourselves lads and ladesses, we're going in! If something is missing from your life, it might be me in glorious technicolour! You can view me waffl- er, talking about issues around morality in fantasy, and how it can influence world building, character development and conflict. With random dubious digressions into world history. Extemporising is …

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Why I Write Fantasy: A Question of Morality, Part 3: Upon What Authority?

Over the last couple of weeks I’ve looked at morality in fantasy writing and world building. This week I’m going to look at what kinds of things a moral framework or viewpoint could be based upon, what people may experience as the root of their morality. In fantasy, as in the real world, there can …

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Why I Write Fantasy: A Question of Morality, Part 2: Beyond Good and Evil

Last week I chatted about the idea that morality in fantasy fiction is often either taken for granted, (painted in simple terms of big evil versus plucky underdog good) or oddly out of step. (Why would 20th and 21st century Western morals be the norm in a variety of quasi-medieval settings?) I also mentioned that …

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Why I Write Fantasy: A Question of Morality, Part 1

Today I had the pleasure of talking with Jesper Schmidt about morality in fantasy world building, one part in an extended series of  discussions on this topic that are well worth watching. He has a great YouTube channel dedicated to all things fantasy writing related – check it out here! He also helps to run …

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