Jess Redman Interview!

I was able to get an ARC of Quintessence through NetGalley a month or so ago. I read this book and it is one of my new favorite books! I reviewed it a couple weeks ago here. Are you more of an outliner, discovery writer, or in between the two? I’m an in-betweener. I used to be more of a discovery writer, but now that I’m often writing on a deadline, I can’t be quite as footloose and fancy free. Usually, I think for a long time before I write anything. I just turn over ideas and grow the plot and get to know characters in my head. Then I do some experimental writing to search for the tone of the story, which is very important to me. I usually write third-person, but each story has its own voice and feel. After that, I’m ready to outline. I leave lots of room for the characters and plot to breathe, and I’m not afraid to change the trajectory of the story. My outline helps me see where I’m heading, but I like to blaze the trails as I go. How long ago did you start writing seriously to get published?

The Book of Dragons Book Review & 5 Qualities of a Good Short Story?

I saw this anthology on Netgalley and hello…dragons…so I was all in! The release date on this book is July 7th 2020. As I read this book, I thought a lot about what I like and don’t like about short stories. This book contained a few that I didn’t care for and several that I loved. All were well written of course, but some stood out above the others. So I analyzed them and came up with 5 things I believe make a good short story. I’m sure these are not all the qualities of a good story though. You might like short stories for another reason. If so, let me know!

6 Ways You Can Begin a Story

How do you begin a story? Not in the sense of create, but where do you start? I was always told to start in Media Res. Latin for in the middle of things. There are countless ways to start a story. I'm going to talk about a few ways to start, but this is by all means not exhaustive. When I'm wanting to strengthen a skill, I look to mentor texts. So let us take a look at some excellent stories and see how they begin.

Quintessence Book Review

I have however read several REALLY amazing books lately! Quintessence is one of them! I gave it a 5 star review on Good reads, which I rarely do. Alma moved 3 months ago and has had trouble adjusting. She's been having anxiety attacks and doesn't really feel like herself. She finds a telescope and through it sees a star fall. This is not a normal star though; it looks like a girl. Alma joins an astronomy club to learn more about this. She and her new friends begin a journey of self discovery and healing like none I've ever read.

25 Books to Read by Authors of Color

“Empathy is seeing with the eyes of another, listening with the ears of another and feeling with the heart of another.” – Alfred Adler This is a good time for reflection. I've done a lot of that lately. I have taught ESL (English as a Second Language) for the last 18 years. Yet, I am … Continue reading 25 Books to Read by Authors of Color

Deep Dive into Description: Fairytale-Style Narrative

Fairytale has such a childish connotation, but bear with me on this. You don’t have to be an author of children’s books to get something from this post. I find that the best way to get better at something is to learn from the masters. I would love to sit down with any of these authors and learn all their secrets, but I doubt they would agree to meet with me. Even if they did, they cannot impart their years of toil upon me in a quick interview. That is best done by study.