Literary Alchemy... one podcast at a time

GUEST HOST UPDATES

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  • Gail Carriger - Sumage Solution ~ All Your Questions Answered, Print Editions & Events!
    Hello my darling Gentle Reader, Here (for my linking ease and your general education) are answers to some of the most frequently asked questions I’ve been getting about my new book, The Sumage Solution: San Andreas Shifters #1. Will there be a print edition? Yes. But if one is independently publishing a book (which I am with this novel) it is really difficult to get a print edition up for preorder. The best I can do ... read more
    Published on Wednesday, June 28th, 2017
  • Cavan Scott - Sherlock Holmes Cry of the Innocents Full Cover
    Just been sent the lovely full cover for Sherlock Holmes Cry of the Innocents, out this September from Titan Books. Isn’t it gorgeous? ... read more
    Published on Wednesday, June 28th, 2017
  • Mercedes Yardley - Miss Murder’s Creepy New Doll
    I was out thrifting and I fell in love with this beautiful mermaid doll. Dolls don’t call to me. In fact, they make me nervous. I don’t like dolls, marionettes, and mannequins, really. They’re not people, but they try so hard to be. It’s deceptive. But this lady? She was meant to be mine. I was joking with My Angry Ginger that this is how home possessions start. She was joking back until the ... read more
    Published on Wednesday, June 28th, 2017
  • Mercedes Yardley - Miss Murder’s Rainbow Hair
    Published on Wednesday, June 28th, 2017
  • E. C. Myers - Anthology Kickstarters
    I have two stories coming out next year in anthologies which are currently on Kickstarter: “Grimoire Girls” for Schoolbooks & Sorcery, “an anthology of queer-inclusive YA urban fantasy short stories intended to increase representation and diversity in teen fiction,” edited by Michael M. Jones, and a currently untitled (and mostly written) story for Mother of Invention, “a speculative fiction anthology of diverse, challenging stories about gender and artificial intelligence,” edited by Tansy Rayner Roberts and Rivqa ... read more
    Published on Wednesday, June 28th, 2017
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FOR THE WRITER…

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  • Dean Wesley Smith - Meetings and a Day Off
    Did Both Meetings for WMG and a Day Off… Tough to have a day working and yet off, but Kris and I managed today. We headed into the valley after the WMG meeting and Kris spent time just sitting in a coffee shop reading while I went picking. Ended up getting 30 or so children’s books for a quarter each for the store, twenty hardbacks for the store at $2 each, some fun toys and ... read more
    Published on Thursday, June 29th, 2017
  • WriterUnboxed - The Weight of the Undone
    I keep waiting. For a moment when work isn’t so demanding. For an hour when the tween stops putting up full resistance to simple requests for help. For a day when negotiating the family schedule doesn’t take high-tech gadgets, extensive three-way discussion, and caving on core values as to what, exactly, constitutes a good meal. For a week when the to do list actually grows shorter. Then, I think, when one of those miracles happens, ... read more
    Published on Thursday, June 29th, 2017
  • The Write Life - Home is Where the Heart Is. Why Not Earn Money Writing About It?
    “They” always say to write about what you know. And what could you know better than your own hometown? Where you live can become the source of endless inspiration for your writing, from the quirky characters you see every day to the restaurants you frequent. You don’t have to live in a massive metropolis to find topics to write about. If you live in San Francisco, New York,or Atlanta, you’ll no doubt have ... read more
    Published on Thursday, June 29th, 2017
  • Positive Writer - 17 Writing Lessons to Remember
    Post by Positive Writer contributor The Magic Violinist With all the information we have at our fingertips, it can be overwhelming to figure out where to start and what to do and how to remember it all when it comes to writing. You might read eight different articles in a morning, all with various advice, and struggle ... read more
    Published on Thursday, June 29th, 2017
  • Live Write Thrive - 8 Steps to a Perfect Scene
    I’m sharing a guest post I wrote some months back for Jerry Jenkins (Here’s the link to the original post, if you’d like to check it out and read some of the comments). Few fiction writers consider the actual process of writing a scene, and I’ve never found anything written on this topic that breaks down the process into steps. So I hope you benefit from this! If you’ve attempted writing a novel, you know ... read more
    Published on Thursday, June 29th, 2017
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Thoughts and Inspirations - RTP Blog Posts

Ideas and Inspiration
3

So, there I was: writing the first scene of the first draft of Hapax. I was bright-eyed and innocent, the scene zipping along beneath my fingers. My monks were preparing to hold vigil to see if the Apocalypse was nigh (spoiler: it was). I had a plot outline, I had character notes, I had worldbuilding…

And then, I realized.

I had forgotten to figure out the monks’ hierarchy. I had no idea who or what their leader was.

Oops.

Don’t Panic

Ideas and Inspiration
3

I want to take a moment to address an issue many writers, including myself, are plagued with:

So many ideas, so little time.

I’m struck with a least two new story ideas a week. Sometimes I can satisfy my fickle muses with a short story or two. Other times, the ideas demand novel-length exorcising. I can’t control it, and I’m somewhat scared of what might happen if I tried. As a result of said caution, I’ve devised a means to placate the voices in my head while maintaining my sanity. I…

Story Development
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“Descriptive” is a common compliment for books. Perhaps too common – one of the usual downfalls of newer writers is the tendency to over-describe every aspect of their stories, from the characters to the setting to the teapot in the cupboard.

Characters should be described. So should setting. That teapot, though, probably doesn’t require the readers’ attention, and you should not be wasting your authorly breath on it. Too much description, even of vital elements of the story, bogs down your narration and leads the reader to start skipping entire sections of your story – assuming, that is, they don’t simply quit reading.

How much is too much? At what point do you go from “very descriptive” to “bloated and boring?” With writing, there are never any rules – only guidelines. The following are a couple of mine.

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Workshop Episode 111 (Guest Host: Myke Cole)

Myke Cole – author of The Shadow Ops Series (including “Gemini Cell”, “Javelin Rain” and the forthcoming “Seige Line” – returns to the Big Chair in the RTP virtual studios to lend his brainstorming-fu to a tale of future warfare, powered armor, and artificial intelligence.

The tale is offered up by creageous Guest Writer Jonathan Zerrusen, a tale of two heroes, the daughter of a nation honored to wear the first powered armor into battle, and a newly transcended (and illegal) AI on opposite sides of a global conflict. The brainstorm froth is frothy indeed as we explore the nuances of cyber characters, deepening the conflict within and around the protagonists, and generally dig up a mountain of Literary Gold (as you do). Hit that PLAY button and get yours!

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Another 20 Minutes with Myke Cole

Myke Cole – author of The Shadow Ops Series (including “Gemini Cell”, “Javelin Rain” and the forthcoming “Seige Line” – has achieved some astonishing things since his last appearance in 2013.…

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One Question: What Makes a Good Fight Scene?

From intimate duels to the death to epic battles, the fight scene is a cornerstone of speculative fiction. For the writer, however, crafting a good fight scene can be an epic struggle to find…

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Workshop Episode 111 (Guest Host: Myke Cole)

Myke Cole – author of The Shadow Ops Series (including “Gemini Cell”, “Javelin Rain” and the forthcoming “Seige Line” – returns to the Big Chair in the RTP virtual studios to lend his brainstorming-fu to a tale of future warfare, powered armor, and artificial intelligence.

The tale is offered up by creageous Guest Writer Jonathan Zerrusen, a tale of two heroes, the daughter of a nation honored to wear the first powered armor into battle, and a newly transcended (and illegal) AI on opposite sides of a global conflict. The brainstorm froth is frothy indeed as we explore the nuances of cyber characters, deepening the conflict within and around the protagonists, and generally dig up a mountain of Literary Gold (as you do). Hit that PLAY button and get yours!