Archive for Writing

On character obstacles

In fiction, it’s common for characters to face obstacles, which they often overcome with great difficulty. One of the problems that I often run into when I’m writing fiction is coming up with obstacles that are both (a) difficult to overcome, and (b) not impossible to overcome. So I’m wondering if any of y’all have […]

Repeated lines

From a 1997 novel: She puts away her notebook. [10 sentences elided here—about half a page. No mention of her notebook anywhere in here.] [Character name] puts away her notebook. [Yes, I understand that it would be possible to construct a rationale for why this made sense or was a clever hint toward something or […]

Dream response

Dreamed that I received a response, via USPS, to a story I had submitted to a magazine. The response took the form of an International Reply Coupon stapled to a small plastic bag. Inside the bag were two small wooden tokens, butterflies I think, and a brief note from Charlie Jane Anders (who hadn’t, I […]