I don’t blog about the craft of writing all that often anymore. There are a few reasons for that. The first is that most days, actually practicing the craft of writing is just about all I can manage. Barely.
The second is that, the more books I’ve written, the less I feel I truly know. Paradoxically, it also seems like any advice I give should be actually useful advice–which kind of scares me, because I am not a teacher. Some people have a true gift for crystallizing points of craft and imparting them as useful nuggets to other writers. Sadly, I’m not one of them. Plotting systems, storyboards, character worksheets, articles that tout “The Four (or Five or Nine or Eighteen) Essential Elements to Story” just make me break out in hives. And when I say that, I don’t mean to disparage them. For writers whose brains are wired that way, I’m sure they are lovely, useful things. To me, it’s kind of like childbirth. I would not dare criticize a writer’s process, any more than I would criticize a woman’s decision to give birth in a swimming pool–whatever feels right for you and gets the baby (or book) out, it’s all good.
When discussing my reaction to storyboards, I have often joked that I am allergic to squares. It’s more like, I just don’t think about stories spatially. Doesn’t work for me. By the same token, I am very reluctant to put forth the way I write books as … Read More »