Posted in writing, process.

If you find you are getting too many blog-post emails and you really don’t want them, you can subscribe to the news only mailing list which I promise not to inun­date. So: before I talk about revi­sions, and what that meant at the time, I want to talk a little bit about a couple of other things. A writer has to learn to handle critiques, because you are going to get them. If from no one else, then from your editor. There are things that are not clear, and things that make no sense (because you’ve left some of the sensible parts on the inside of your head. “But – I explained all that!” “No, you didn’t.” “But I did.” Michelle thinks about this because she is certain … Continue reading 

Posted in writing, process.

I’m honestly not certain who is inter­ested in these posts – except me. I am clearly inter­ested in them. Bits and pieces of what becomes a post have been floating in the back brain, and I’ve returned to them time and again. Prac­ti­cally speaking, leaving the entire musing and contem­pla­tion aside, “Just write” is the only correct advice. But… writing can be isolating in many ways. Finding explicit How To, taking courses that teach explicit How To, finding authors who have written distinct How To (and to be fair to them, they are trying to be useful and they are cutting down the musing to get to what seems the skeleton, the bones, of process) are often meant as advice, as dictum. I am, … Continue reading 

Posted in writing, process.

ETA: So many typos T_T I want to take a small detour to talk about outlines – the thing I don’t write. I want to close the gap between outlines and pantsing a bit. And I want to make clear that nothing about either is cut and dried. When I finished the Books of the Sundered, I real­ized the thing that had really, really slowed me down was lack of concrete details in my world­building. I had a story I wanted to tell — and this story became the two book Sacred Hunt, the Hunter duology. (For the record, I thought it was one book when I started it.) The scene that came to me was the end of Stephen’s arc, and to me it was really strong. But I had to, once again, build … Continue reading 

Posted in writing, process.

In univer­sity, I had some poems published in the UC Review. I felt that I under­stood poetry (all free-verse style; I find that actual meter is diffi­cult to write because I get over­whelmed by the “sound” of the beats the form dictates; I almost can’t catch the words and their meaning, they get so drowned out. If I read them out loud, I can, because one doesn’t read out loud with that heavy, heavy rhythm, but writing isn’t about out loud, initially, at least not to me). Poetry was the art of creating metaphors to circum­scribe emotions. Reading poetry is reading a language of expe­ri­ence; you see, in the metaphors that you would not have written because they wouldn’t have occurred to you, a new way of looking at … Continue reading 

Posted in writing, process.

I’ve been thinking about how to write about my writing process. I want to make clear that this is not really meant to be advice, or to be prac­tical advice, because writing process is very indi­vidual. Yes, those of us who write in English are composing sentences of (mostly) English words, and the tech­nical aspect — writing sentences — is what even­tu­ally results in a book. But our approach to those sentences and the even­tual story those sentences present is highly idio­syn­cratic. What I do is not what other writers do because all writers work differ­ently. I know writers whose process are similar to mine, at least super­fi­cially, but no two writers approach writing the same way. I am a bit of a process geek, and I find process discus­sions endlessly … Continue reading