The Writing Life: Everything Requires Research

The title pretty much says it all, folks. When I’m writing, I’m constantly needing to research things: medieval clothing, swords of various eras, ships, rigging, rope names, sewer system management, tidal estuaries, mercantile societies and the role of guilds within said societies, pre-industrial food staples in different parts of the world, the burial rites of …

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The Writing Life: Doubts Part 1: Am I Good Enough?

Last week I talked about dissatisfaction, and in the process mentioned its big brother, doubt. Doubt manifests for writers in quite a few subtle guises, so I’m going to dedicate a column a week for a while (with potential interruptions to allow folk to recover!) looking at how doubt can sneak into a writer’s life. …

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The Writing Life: Commodity Versus Art, the Eternal Challenge.

Ursula K. Le Guin died this week. I read The Earthsea Trilogy (as was) a few times in my youth, and loved it. I really should get around to reading the complete Earthsea fictions, and of course many of her other works often referenced in this week of obituaries and commentaries mourning her passing. In …

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The Writing Life: Letting Go of Your First Love

The first love you wrote, I mean. Of course, many authors successfully publish their first loves, and do astoundingly well. For others there is another story, of a first, or first and second and more novels written and discarded, before a book is released to the reading world. I’m guessing that one of those discarded …

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The Writing Life: Being True to Your Instincts

As I’ve said in other articles, I’ve known forever that I would be a writer, and that I would write fantasy stories. Apart from one cathartic journey into writing nursing fiction, which still had elements of the fantastical (how many nurses find themselves talking to the devil and questioning their own sanity?), all of my …

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