Story craft

Make Your Book Reader-Worthy


Thank goodness Shelly Thacker walks her own path, otherwise she might be a forest ranger instead of a national bestselling author giving us all sorts of fabulous books to read!  Not sure what I’m talking about? Check out her bio! As NaNoWriMo wraps up, I’m thrilled to have Shelly guest-blogging today with wonderful insight into… Read more »

The "Supreme" Key to Creating Characters

This post continues where Monday’s post (From Supreme Ruler of the Universe to Girl Next Door: How to Write Believable Characters) left off. You, as the supreme ruler of your story, have given your character a goal. Excellent. And your goal as a writer is to create a well-paced story that has compelling characters and… Read more »

From Supreme Ruler of the Universe to Girl Next Door: How to Write Believable Characters

First things first: There is no right or wrong way to create a character. Where your book is concerned, you’re God.  So that’s my caveat. If you like what I have to say, great. Use it. If not, then just toss it. You’re the boss here. You’re in charge. (Feels nice, doesn’t it?) All characters… Read more »

Shane Black knows action


Okay, that’s a duh headline if ever there was one, but it’s true. And while I aspire to include just geegobs of original content on this blog, at the moment, I’m reading, revising and (yes! thank you!) fixing a story problem per an epiphany in an upcoming book. Which translates to: Original content? Not so… Read more »



In some ways, getting slapped in the face is actually worse than getting punched. The physical pain is almost the same. But there’s an added dose of humiliation and shame on top. An overlay of mortification. As if someone dumped a pail of loser juice over your head. Plus, your cheeks get all flushed. And… Read more »

Indiana Jones and the status quo


I’ve been listening to some tapes on story craft, and something in one of them recently struck me. In a nutshell, the instructor was talking about the first act, and how in the set-up, we see the hero in their ordinary life–the status quo. Then, per the Hero’s Journey, Joseph Campbell, Vogler, and basic story… Read more »