Category Archives: Historical writing

Character Emotions — Part Two

In the last session, the discussion focused on suggestions for improving emotional expression. The list included ditching clichés, being specific, avoiding ambiguity, using a range of emotions, and relying on personal experience. Let’s see if we can figure out how to pull this off. … Continue reading

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Character Emotions — Part One

In the writer’s workshop I conducted this past spring, we spent some time discussing ways to portray the emotions of our characters. It seemed evident, to me anyway, that too many of the participating writers were satisfied with static statements … Continue reading

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Is Your Sex Scene Worthwhile?

When working with beginning novelists and reviewing their work, I’m often tasked with reading their very first sex scenes. One might be tempted to say, “You lucky dawg! You get to jump straight to the good stuff.” But, one would … Continue reading

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Change Your Story’s Clothing

Every writer I know has come up with a story idea at one time or another which they like, but which just doesn’t seem strong enough to warrant the effort needed to write it. Still, chucking the idea into the … Continue reading

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Dude! That doesn’t mean what you think it means. Part Two

Writers of historical fiction occasionally find themselves at the mercy of an evolving language. Many words which once had common, non-controversial meanings, have changed over the years and now carry linguistic baggage our ancestors would have never imagined. Two words … Continue reading

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Dude! That doesn’t mean what you think it means. Part One

One of the many stories floating around social media these days details the content of a text message exchange between a mother and her adult son: Mom: WTF, Bobby. The store’s open! Bobby: Uh, Mom? You do know what that … Continue reading

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Where Newbies Go Wrong

Here’s the thing: anyone can write a book. The only limitation I can think of is a complete inability to communicate. Stephen Hawking, by the way, produced at least a half-dozen books after losing the ability to speak due to … Continue reading

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