My latest Storyville column is all about writing dynamic settings. I’m a big believer in grounding your work in reality, whether you write literary stories that focus on an internal monologue, or fantastic stories set in distant galaxies. I hate stories with floating heads that don’t tell me where I am. So, here are some tips on how to deliver the goods by revealing character, using all five senses, and painting with broad brush stokes so that you allow your audience to picture the setting while bringing their own history and experiences onto the stage. Hope it helps!
New Storyville column is now up, all about writing narrative hooks. I focus on some of the work of southern gothic author Ron Rash. How do get your audience’s attention with one line? Icebergs and red herrings, what are those? In medias res, have you heard that said before? It’s Latin. And which of these are not narrative hooks: descriptions, settings, action, dialogue, back story? One hint: all of them. Hope it helps!
My second column is now up at Litreactor.com, and it talks about how to write a cover letter, your bio, and the ways that you can stand out when you submit your stories to editors at magazines and journals around the world. Hope it helps you out a little bit. More columns and review to come.
Litreactor.com has launched, and man is this site taking off. It’s an offshoot of The Cult, taking all of the publishing, craft, and literature conversations as well as workshops, classes, lectures, reviews and columns away from what was essentially the Chuck Palahniuk fan club, and moving it all to a new base.
I’m thrilled that I will be writing a column, called Storyville, and my first column is now up, about Finding Your Voice. I’ll have a column every month, maybe more often. I’ll also do book reviews now and then, and maybe some interviews sporadically as well.
The people in charge of this, Kirk Clawes, Dennis Widmyer, Joshua Chaplinsky, Mark Vanderpool and Phil Jourdan, they’re amazing people, very hard working, and so smart. I’m honored to be a part of it. And the writers? Wow, where to even start, so much talent joining me, Brandon Tietz, Erin Reel, Keith Rawson, Kasey Carpenter, Rob W. Hart, really you just need to head over and check it all out. So much to absorb.