Author Archive | Caleb

Filling the Blank Page

And then what? It’s a question I seem to be asking myself almost constantly, under my breath, in the strangest of situations—chopping vegetables, brushing my teeth, washing the dishes—and then what? In the back of my mind, I’m always trying to figure out how to fill the next blank page of my work in progress, always trying to figure out what comes next. The question is reflexive at this point, almost a verbal cliché, and […]

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Kill Your Darlings

I finished my very first full-length manuscript in college, and it took me years to complete, writing five hundred words at a stretch in between classes, coursework, and hanging out with friends. It started as a short story, but I sensed more lurking beyond the point I’d originally envisioned as The End; and so I kept going…and going and going, until what I had on my hands was a YA horror epic of 160,000 words. […]

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To Be (Continued) or Not to Be…

The first full-length manuscript I sent around to agents I described as a “standalone novel with series potential.” The story was a self-contained arc, but I’d fallen in love with the characters, and I was excited about the possibility of taking them on more escapades. With that in mind, I deliberately wrote an ending that would allow me a reason to pick things up and carry on, if and when a publisher made me an […]

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Writing Yourself

June is Pride month, a time for the queer community to celebrate its history and commemorate the anniversary of the Stonewall riots—the 1969 uprisings in Greenwich Village that marked the turning point for LGBTQ+ rights in this country. For a number of reasons, this year’s Pride holds special significance for me, and one of the big ones is that it is my first year as the published author of an OwnVoices novel about a gay […]

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Choosing the Right Narrative Tense/POV

The minute I finished Draft Zero of my upcoming novel, White Rabbit, I was seized with doubt. I had written the entire novel—all 92,000 words—in first-person past tense…but had that been a mistake? The issues I grappled with as I considered this question led me to an even broader one: How do you determine the proper combination of tense and POV for a story, anyway? I wrote my debut novel, Last Seen Leaving, in first-person […]

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