Genres
Genres

Sexuality in Science Fiction

I’m going to approach this topic from two directions, so bear with me. The US and a bunch of other places have inherited British legal systems that dates back a Very Long Time™. A lot of places inherited Christianity as a “State Religion.” Both have a strong emphasis on heterosexual marriage (One Man, One Woman) as the basis for a lot of other things, including most of your rights as a person. In the old days, people had more freedom to be non-cissexual. Scientific research these days suggests that roughly ten percent of the population is definitively homosexual (a 6...

This content is for members only.
Login Join Now

Writing to Teach

My writing career started by teaching people how to play poker. I’ve talked about that in my article on establishing yourself as an expert, but I didn’t really cover HOW to write this type of nonfiction. The reason I was successful as a poker writer, according to my readers, was that I found ways to explain complicated subjects in simple ways. There were two reasons I was able to do this.  1. My competition weren’t good teachers Most poker theory experts are not great writers. They are very intelligent, but they don’t relate to people as well as they relate...

This content is for members only.
Login Join Now

Establishing Yourself As An Expert

For many genres of nonfiction, especially self-help or instructional books, readers want to hear from an expert. Are you an expert in your field? Would you like to be? Establishing yourself as an expert is easy in most areas of expertise.  The first question is, what qualifications are necessary in your field? When I was establishing myself as an expert in the poker world, all that I needed to do was provide good information, backed by solid math, present myself confidently as an expert, and be a winning player.  If your area of expertise is related to the law, medicine,...

This content is for members only.
Login Join Now

Crafting a Magic System

If you ask a thousand fantasy authors what makes a good magic system, you’ll get a thousand different answers. I am not going to give you answer one thousand and one. I’m not going to do that simply because the details of your magic system don’t matter. It doesn’t even matter if your system has details. Or if there’s a system at all. Some authors—and their characters—treat magic like a science. If magic is common enough, it seems human nature that it would be studied, codified, even standardized to some extent. Spells are like recipes or language, things to be...

This content is for members only.
Login Join Now

Genres for the Independent Author

Genres are a fascinating part of the writing profession. They mean nothing and everything; they are both limiting and freeing; they are arbiters and arbitrary in near equal measures. I began my career as a traditional author. As such, genres were the purview of publishers and booksellers. I wrote the book and then they told me what genre it was in. That didn’t mean I didn’t know what genre my books were in; it just meant I didn’t care if they decided it was something different. It was their job to sell those books, and if they thought it would...

This content is for members only.
Login Join Now

Books to Read for Writing Fantasy

Nobody springs fully formed from the head of Zeus, and none less so than the writer. To attain any skill in writing, we devour thousands of books, write millions of words, and talk endlessly with each other about the act of turning our private thoughts into stories for strangers’ consumption. This list isn’t anywhere near exhaustive, and some of the selections may seem downright strange, but I’m hoping to showcase some books that maybe you haven’t heard of before. Note: I am a big early/middle medieval guy, so a lot of the history books on this list are centered around that time...

This content is for members only.
Login Join Now
CHAT