The Plan Plan Worksheet

Minor one, this. I’ve reworked old NaNoWriMo worksheet I did of the long version of The Plan Plan, cutting the number of pages down to 9. It’s a little streamlined, but should hopefully be just as useful to those that liked the previous version.

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The Importance of Self-Confidence in your Writing

This was originally written as a guest post for the readful things blog, and was published there in July 2013. I tweeted about it during the week and as the response was positive, it seemed worthy of a re-post. As with all my blog posts, it’s especially relevant to me at the moment – so consider it a pep-talk for you and I.

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Behind the Curtain

A recent post by a friend on her gaming site, SaveGame (yes, same one from the sidebar) really honed in on the sort of malaise I’ve been feeling myself. Losing the passion for the things you once loved, feeling empty in the moments spent in a hobby that used to provide a sense of fulfilment, it can make you feel lost.

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The Dangerous Power of Story

We are all exposed to stories. There’s few lives they haven’t touched, though the most troubling of them are to be shaken off as a mere collection of words. Words aren’t considered with the same weight as actions. Words against us should be shrugged away as unlike sticks or stones, it’s suggested they can’t hurt us.

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The Gamer’s Journey

For the second time around, I’ve written something on storytelling in games. To make things a little different, this time I sought the wisdom and experiences of others. This here post is merely to announce it to the world, and link to the relevant bits. The most important thing to get out of the way, is that I’m really honoured to have had such remarkable people offer me their time and input, so that I could write more about it.

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A Commitment

Is it a surprise to anyone that writing takes time? The quality changes with experience, but few wordsmiths can push out exactly what they want on the first go. Even if they could, it takes time, from the 5-10K of a short story through to ranges between 50-250K for either novellas, novels or tomes. There’s no escaping that.

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Seven Signs Your Characters Will Try To Kill You

Yes, Seven!

I’m not being alarmist. I swear I’m not. At the back of your mind, you, Writer, have always known that there was something off about your characters. You’ve read them over and over, tried to understand what they were doing in your story, but always felt unsettled by their presence. Were you just paranoid? Were you just doubting your characters instead of doubting yourself? Was it all just IN YOUR MIND?

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Our Responsibility as Writers

I wrote Shimmer in the month of November, 2009. In the space of those thirty days, it went from a ten-point-plan, to the longest thing I’d ever written. Fifty-three-thousand words. The most I’d ever done before was around 12K, and that was over the space of a much longer period of time, and resembled an embellished plan rather than a readable novel.

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Don’t Forget To Wipe! How to clean up a Stinker of a Novel

Once you’ve excised the not-so-great parts of your novel, give it a once-over to ensure there’s nothing left dangling.

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My Muse is a Bitch

Somewhere between the real and the fictional, sits an invisible pixie, satyr, yahg or platypus that feeds you ideas. The muse. She (or he, or it) is never around when you want them to be. It’s their fault when we have writer’s block, when we want to abandon the plot we’ve been thrashing through for the sake of the new one about the dancing robot with an elven girlfriend, and when our character decides to jump out of a plane we’re intent on killing them in.

My muse is a bitch.

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The Clockmaker’s Folly (Part 1 of 5)

Last February, I decided to write a short story for my then-girlfriend. I took inspiration from books, games and TV shows that were dear to us, plus little in-jokes. I used Elements Method. It was going to be 3-4 pages long, and be a Valentine’s Day gift.

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Even before the title

One of the things I do when I speak to other writers, is to ask them about what they’re writing, and try to prod them for information so that they can think about their stories more objectively. This happens even more when they’re stuck on details, and I have ways of fleshing out ideas, or strengthening existing ones. None of it really addresses the question of what to write about.

It’s vampires. The answer is always vampires.

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