Writing Articles

Writing Op-Eds

September 22, 2017 1:13 pm Published by Leave your thoughts

The op-ed gets its name for being an opinion piece that originally appeared opposite the editorial page. An editorial page editorial is signed by the board, while an opinion piece is signed by an individual. The term is also sometimes thought to be an abbreviation of opinion-editorial.  Athletes before taking... read more

how stories define narrative medicine

Narrative Medicine

September 19, 2017 11:20 am Published by Leave your thoughts

Title image: MK Czerwiec, aka the Comic Nurse We fiction writers sometimes underestimate the value of our own work – or, at least, I do. I sometimes have to remind myself that we humans understand our world through narratives and that if you can tell a good enough story, you... read more

Advice for beginning authors

Va, petit livre

August 8, 2017 6:08 am Published by Leave your thoughts

“Go, little book” This exhortation from an author to his newly published book has been rattling around in my brain for some decades. I had thought it originated with one of the 19th-century French symbolist poets like Rimbaud or Mallarmé. I had also thought it meant that once the book... read more

Sense of Smell

May 9, 2017 9:00 am Published by Leave your thoughts

It is a truism that beginning writers stick fairly closely to the senses of sight and sound and tend to ignore the sense of smell. I, therefore, challenge beginning writers to try their hand at a werewolf romance. The minute werewolves come into the picture the sense of smell steps... read more

Metaphors and Similes

May 2, 2017 12:55 pm Published by Leave your thoughts

From Shakespeare: Metaphor It is the east, and Juliet is the sun. Simile O, she doth teach the torches to burn bright! Her beauty hangs upon the cheek of night, Like a rich jewel in an Ethiop’s ear.

Word Count

April 7, 2017 9:00 am Published by Leave your thoughts

Note: This blog is a follow up to Size Matters and How Big Is Your Canvas? where I discuss in general terms imagining one’s story in terms of a painting. I can tell a writer is new to novel writing when I encounter a mismatch between the size of the story... read more

On First-Person Narration

March 3, 2017 7:28 pm Published by Leave your thoughts

I originally published this article on my Goodreads page (come follow me!), but I realized I have not talked about all the misconceptions surrounding the romance genre here, so I’m reposting this blog for you all to read today. It is a truism that many first novels are written in the first... read more

A Writer’s Buried Treasure

January 31, 2017 9:00 am Published by Leave your thoughts

We writers regularly give ourselves gifts – whether we’re initially conscious of them or not – in the form of buried treasure. As we write, we leave ourselves breadcrumbs, just like in the fairy tale. But unlike in the fairy tale, there are no birds to eat them. And our... read more

English Settings III: Americanisms/Anachronisms

December 27, 2016 9:00 am Published by Leave your thoughts

This is the sequel to English Settings I: Britishisms and English Settings II: British Slang. I’ll start where I started twice before: So you’re an American novelist and you’ve chosen to set your story in England. That’s great. But now here’s your problem: English. Namely, American English. It’s one thing... read more