The Purple Star

This semester, along with two other classes, I began work on my senior project — a fiction novel. Each week, I write a new chapter for my novel and present it to the head of my committee. During our weekly sessions, my professor reads the chapter and provides me with immediate feedback.

Project is the […]

The Magic of Writing

The first stage magic show I remember seeing was at Oklahoma’s Frontier City. Although almost every part of the theme park has a western motif, the magic show is just a magic show. I saw the magic show multiple times over the years, each year with a new magician, and the theater was always […]


I’ve spent the past couple of weeks diving into several of the “how to write” books, podcasts, and tutorials I’ve picked up and/or bookmarked over the past year. I read Scene and Structure by Jack Bickham, and Plot and Structure by James Scott Bell, and referenced Deborah Chester’s The Fantasy Fiction Formula for a novel […]

The Fantasy Fiction Formula (Book and Podcast)

When I tell my friends that my writing professor (Deborah Chester) wrote the book on writing genre fiction, I’m being quite literal. Okay, so maybe she didn’t write the book on writing genre fiction, but she wrote a book on the subject, and a darned good one too. It’s called The Fantasy Fiction Formula, and […]

Wrapping Up Another Semester

Back in January at the beginning of last semester, I created a side blog ( to track the creation of my novel. The semester’s over and my work on the novel is done, so yesterday afternoon I exported all the posts, deleted the blog, and imported them over here into the Writing category if you […]

Feels Good, Man

Earlier this week I turned in my novel.

Not just an electronic copy, but a printed one as well. 261 pages. It felt weird to print something that large and think, “I wrote all of those words.” I don’t think I ever printed out either of my first two books. Even though 52,500 words puts […]

The Finish Line!

On Sunday, thousands of people gathered in the streets of Oklahoma City to run in the annual Oklahoma City Memorial Marathon, marking the twenty-first anniversary of the bombing of the Murrah Building in Oklahoma City. The marathon has multiple categories including a 5k, half-marathon, and full marathon.

The marathon is televised locally, and […]

When Characters Take Off On Their Own

Many fiction writers comment that one or more of their characters “have a mind of their own.” Some go as far as to say that they don’t know what their characters will do or how their books will end until they get there. I never truly understood this phenomenon… until it happened to me.


A Place for Everything and Everything in its Place

Those of you who know me outside this blog may know that I’ve had a long-standing battle with “stuff.” I’m not a hoarder, or at least not the bad kind that collects garbage and jars of pee pee. No, I’m just a guy who likes collecting things (to the extreme at times). My wife once […]

A Crushing Blow for the Protagonist (Me)

Approximately two weeks ago, I, along with my classmates, turned in the first 25,000 words of our novels. Thursday, we received grades and critiques. Convinced I had written an almost perfect blend of action, romance, and comedy, I excitedly began to read my professor’s comments. I did find it odd that her comments consisted […]