Excellence v. Mediocrity

“Good enough” shouldn’t be good enough. For writing, or for anything we do in our lives. And I’ll end there and not turn it into a lecture or sermon!

Adventures In Fiction

From an article by novelist Athol Dickson on his site, discussing excellence v. mediocrity in writing:

It’s true many novels by Christians are poorly written. That’s also true of many other kinds of novels. In fact it’s true of most novels of every kind, but it’s not a particular indictment of mediocre writers or the readers who enable them. Most people don’t really care about excellence in architecture, sculpture, painting, or dance . . . or government, commerce, marriage, or anything else in life that ought to matter.

What interests me, is why. In our discussion about the “Worst Books” list, some of my author friends speculated that so many people dislike those novels because they were forced to read them in school and disliked them then. But these books truly are works of genius—most of them are, anyway—so why didn’t we love them in the first place?


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Emotional Connection

I’ve been mulling over these thoughts, so I decided I’d repost this blog, with the hope that I have accomplished this in my stories.


Writer's Cramps

I just read something Marc Martel (of the band Downhere) wrote about his songwriting: “…if the song doesn’t connect with people emotionally first, then there’s not much point to it.”

This isn’t true just of songwriters. I’ve known writers hung up on the mechanics – and don’t get me wrong, that’s important. Writing is a craft that must be honed. But you can have a manuscript that is technically perfect: proper grammar, punctuation, fantastic hook, showing not telling, great plot arc, wickedly tight writing – everything today’s publisher is looking for, and still have something that is void.

I’ve seen this many times in slush piles and in crit groups. Yes, get all those things I listed above correct, but that’s not enough. You must get your readers to connect with your characters, care about them. You want your readers to connect, be emotionally involved.

This last year…

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Faster Than Light (well almost) Feedback

I received a message on Facebook from someone who bought one of my books at the Dover Comic Con yesterday (Deuces Wild: Beginners’ Luck). He had gone home, immediately read the whole thing, and liked it so much he contacted me the same night to tell me so.

That’s the sort of thing that keeps a writer writing! Thank you, Gene!


Dover Comic Con 2015 – way too much fun!

So – is it legal to have so much fun? I had a blast – and it was great to share it with family and friends. Selling books was nice too, although I did sigh a few times that I had to be at my table and not just wandering about the whole day. I also went on a guilt trip because I actually had fans who came up and asked when the next books in the series were going to be out!

And I had a costume this year – it was an attempt to show off  bit of each genre in which I have books published, which might have made for a bit of confusion but I think I looked all right, and that’s all that counts!

A few highlights: Mario and Luigi were there, and several Doctors – and the TARDIS. Light and L made an appearance, as well as some stormtroopers and Boba Fett (I challenged him with my ray gun and he ducked outside – that shows what he’s made of!), Ghostbusters and steampunk Ghostbusters, a weeping angel, Harry Potter, tons of superheroes, and too many more to mention.

I have a few photos, but instead of posting them here (because WordPress and I argue too much about wrapping text), I’m putting them on my Facebook author’s page.