"Blackest of the black, darker than night, come to me my bleeding light." -Danzig, "Her Black Wings"

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Failure after Failure

Failure in real life can be bad. Sure, there are sayings like “What doesn’t kill us makes us stronger!” and “People who don’t fail never tried,” but the only thing losing ever taught me was that I didn’t like losing much.

Novels are different though, and one thing I’ve learned this semester is that your […]

The Chase

I spent an hour or two yesterday writing a motorcycle chase. Our hero — Skip — has just been lured into a seedy part of town in hopes of hiring a coyote (or “Coyotaje”) to help sneak him and his cohort Monica back across the border into the United States. The meeting was a […]

Write What You Know?

Last night my family and I spent the night in a cabin in the woods. I wrote a little bit about the cabin on my website. This entry isn’t about the cabin. Not exactly, anyway. It’s about one of the most misunderstood pieces of writing advice: “Write what you know.”

This sage piece of writing […]

50 Yard Line

Over the weekend, I reached my first major goal: 25,000 words. The novel I have to turn in this May must be 50,000 words in length, so at least in regards to my word count, I’m halfway there. I’m not halfway done with the work that must be completed, of course. I spent roughly four […]

Onions, Ogres, and Novels have Layers

Shortly after the two of them first meet, Shrek tries explaining to Donkey that ogres, like onions, have layers.

Novels have layers, too.

As I mentioned the other day, I’ve been writing some of my scenes in almost a short hand style of writing. Something like:

Skip pours a drink. Monica stares at […]

The Worst Part About Writing

One on the (hundreds of) things other kids made fun of me about was how much I enjoyed doing homework, specifically writing assignments. I loved reading books and writing book reports. I looked forward to writing essays almost as much as going out on the playground.

That being said, let me tell you what […]

What’s in a Name?

One of the things we’ve learned in class is that character names matter. Imagine two princesses, one named Priscilla and the other, Ivana. Chances are, you didn’t imagine identical twins.

George Lucas may be the master of obvious names. The lone smuggler’s last name is Solo, and the alien who shows up to collect money […]

The Lone Writer

I never was much for group projects at school. Assign me a project and I would dive into it, working on every aspect until everything was perfect. Stick me on a group project however and watch me curl up into a shell. The problem with most group projects is that everybody in the group feels […]


A couple of years ago, I got assigned to a couple of projects at work where I ended up writing a lot of code and scripts. I didn’t know a lot of the commands I needed off the top of my head, so often I wrote what we called pseudo-code before writing real code. Pseudo-code […]

Backing up your Words

A couple of days ago, my primary desktop computer died. I had some concerns, like long was it going to take me to replace it and how much money was it going to cost me, but one thing I was not concerned about at all was, “is my novel backed up?”