How to write fast(er)

I read three books on writing faster and cherry picked techniques from them to try to increase my drafting output. Here’s how it’s going so far.

Public service announcement: I don’t write writing advice blog posts. If anything sounds like a writing advice blog post, it isn’t. It’s just me mulling over something that worked for me or something I’m trying. This may be such a post.

Six days ago, when I felt like I was going in circles trying to plan my new novel, I decided to throw in the towel and just start writing it. It’s been some time since I drafted, so I expected to be a little rusty. It could have been worse, except I seem to have forgotten how to write in conflict even when I have it all lined up and ready to go, and I’ve forgotten that description even exists.

But those are problems for a revision to fix.

Right now I want to get the bones of my story down so I have something to edit. And as quickly as possible because, you know, I’m impatient. My last first draft, which I believe came in at about 140k words, took me three months. That was fine, but wouldn’t it be fun if I could write this one faster? Then I could get more quickly to the real work of bringing the story to life.

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2024 debut books to support, thanks Cait Corrain

Cait Corrain tanked their writing career by review-bombing debut books by authors of colour whom they considered competition. See their victims’ exciting books here.

If you’ve been on Twitter recently–or read the normal human news–you will have heard about the Cait Corrain review bombing scandal. If you live in a cottage in the woods without internet (in which case how are you reading this?), the short version is that Cait, who was to be a 2024 debut author, created a bunch of fake Goodreads accounts to give 1-star ratings and nasty reviews to a bunch of 2024 debuts written by authors of colour, while giving 5-star reviews to their own book.

If you want the long version, which reads like an inept villain story, withcindy gives a much more detailed explanation in this video.

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How logical does a fantasy system of magic have to be?

In worldbuilding for a new fantasy world that is thick with magic, I ask myself how much sense a fantasy system of magic has to make. And contemplate the nature of the human soul.

I’m worldbuilding for my new fantasy novel, and an important part of that is figuring out the universe’s system of magic. I’m trying something a bit different in this story, with a universe that’s less earth-like and more magical.

We’re talking isolated settlements floating over a void through which people must travel to move between them, venomous tree octopuses, and magical orbs exuded by a leviathan of the deep void. You want magic? It drips from every tree.

The problem is, it’s really hard to come up with a unified concept of magic that explains all the weird magic stuff in this universe. I know magic is allowed to be mysterious and, well, magical, but I’ve always preferred magic systems that have a certain logic to them, even if the logic includes a few leaps of possibility.

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The definitive* list of fantasy novels with older female protagonists

I asked on Twitter for recommendations of fantasy novels with older female protagonists, and here’s what everyone came up with. (Note I was joking about “definitive”.)

* I lied. This list is most certainly not definitive, sorry.

Some time ago I wrote a post lamenting the dearth of older women who are fantasy protagonists. (At least, I think that’s what the post was about. It’s been a while.)

Recently someone reached out to me referencing the post, and because my TBR list isn’t long enough** I decided to seek out a list of such books.

I posted this tweet asking for recommendations. (I’m not embedding the post because that comes with malicious code.) As you can see, it garnered a lot of interest.

A tweet by A.S. Akkalon that reads:

I'm looking for fantasy books with protagonists who are older women. How much older? Anything older than your standard teen or twenty-something. Any suggestions?

#books #AmReading #WritingCommunity
A hot question, as it turns out.

In this blog post I pull out an (unfortunately not entirely) comprehensive list of the suggestions I received for your reading pleasure. Also to help me plump up my TBR pile.

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