Cars are an amazing invention. With no effort on your part, they can take you all over the country. Shame they cause global warming and all that.
On one level, I enjoy the natural environment. I love unspoiled forests, quaint coastal towns that will need more canoes and taller gumboots when sea levels rise, and being able to breathe.
I know traffic congestion interferes with people’s quality of life and I’m familiar with the pleasure of walking or cycling to one’s destination.
On another level, I realise how freaking awesome cars are.
Continue reading “The wonder of cars”
I decided to write a sequel for my WIP, and in days I went from having no idea what it might be about to having dozens of ideas. Here’s how.
I try to avoid writing “how to” posts because I’m generally of the opinion that I know nothing about anything. This post is more “how I got lots of ideas for a sequel”.
(Sorry I deceived you with the title. I feel awful about it.)
I’ve always considered my work in progress to be a “stand-alone with series potential”. That is, the main story question is answered by the end of the book, and at least one of the main characters survives the climax to potentially appear in a subsequent book.
Rats, now I’ve let a spoiler slip. Well, what did you expect from me? I like happy endings and for people to get what they deserve.
Continue reading “How to explode with ideas for your sequel”
This is not a review of “The Rats” by James Herbert and it contains a lot of spoilers. But if you’re ever in a horror novel these lessons might save your life.
At the behest of my friend and critique partner, Anna Kaling, who is also a talented romance author, I recently read “The Rats” by James Herbert.
It was partly my fault. I did agree to read a book from her favourite genre, horror, and in exchange she read a fantasy novel I chose. Check out how that turned out.
Don’t ask me why a romance author prefers to read horror, but I’ve read some of Anna’s books, and you can barely tell that the author gets her jollies from reading about people being eaten alive by giant rats.
Yes, this post is going to be one huge spoiler for “The Rats”, but it’s really old so if you haven’t read it yet you were probably never going to.
Also, saying that people get eaten alive by giant rats in a horror book called “The Rats” can hardly be classed as a spoiler. Come on.
Continue reading “15 lessons a fantasy author learned from reading horror”
Roget the thesaurus enjoys turning clear English into incomprehensible babble. Watch him mutilate a perfectly readable excerpt from my short story, The Emperor’s Cat.
I’d like you to meet my good friend, Roget. Roget enjoys long walks on the beach and messing with other people’s fiction. He’s also a thesaurus (which I suspect is some kind of dinosaur).
Good uses for Roget include remembering the perfect word that’s on the tip of your tongue and using your own vocabulary more effectively.
Bad uses for Roget include using other people’s vocabulary and looking up big words to insert into your magnum opus in an attempt to make yourself look smart.
Hint: it doesn’t.
Since doing things wrong is more fun than doing things right, that’s what I’m going to do here. Yes, it’s game. Here are the rules:
Continue reading “How not to use a thesaurus”
Having to eat every day is a ridiculous design flaw in humans. Eating is expensive, time-consuming, and often dull. I have a better proposal.
Whoever designed humans so we have to eat every day made a serious mistake.
Perhaps it seemed like a good idea at the time, but if a bit of thought had gone in it would never have made it out of the boardroom.
Continue reading “Eating should be optional”