Tag Archives | craft

Your Characters Should Want Things

A couple of months ago, I had the privilege of hearing Naomi Novik, author of UPROOTED and SPINNING SILVER, speak about fantasy and folklore at a local bookstore. She likened fairy tales to desire lines: those eroded paths in grass or woodland that form when many people seek out the same things—a shortcut, a nice view, a way around an obstacle. They can endure for centuries. Fairy tale characters are full of desires: they want […]

4 Comments

Plot, PoV and Agenda. Or: Is This Your Story to Tell?

I think this week was the tipping point. At least for me. Last week, fellow PubCrawl contributor Patrice Caldwell and I were at the amazing Highlights Foundation, teaching (with agent Linda Camacho and author Linda Sue Park) a workshop on representing responsibly. It’s something I talk about frequently — as member of We Need Diverse Books and the co-founder of CAKE Literary, but especially as a brown writer with brown children who still struggle to […]

7 Comments

What Is Good Pacing, and Why Does It Matter?

Good Afternoon, Pubcrawlers! If you’ve ever queried a manuscript or sold a book, then I think it’s safe to assume you’ve likely heard the word “pacing” in feedback for your project. Whether the pacing was too slow, too fast, or missing something, when I’m editing client projects or giving feedback on submissions, it’s one of the notes I give the most. When a novel is well-paced, it carries the reader through the story easily to […]

3 Comments

GUEST POST: The Writer as Tour Guide

The Writer as Tour Guide 6 Tips for Writing Outside Your Own Culture Let’s say that you run a tour company where you serve as bus driver and tour guide for people who want to have an intense, immersive experience of a fascinating city. Ideally, you should know that city intimately. But what if you’ve never been there? You could hire a local bus driver and tour guide—someone who’s familiar with the history, the streets, […]

2 Comments