When I conceived of Valya, the heroine of The Dreaming Land, I knew I wanted her to be…bad. You know, like a bad girl. And really bad, not just fake bad. But I also wanted her to be sympathetic, which created a challenge. You see, while there are plenty of literary tropes and lots of good […]Read more "Bad Girls: Writing a Sympathetic Anti-Heroine"
“Hands off Baghdad,” Dino MC 47 raps in his 2009 single “They Tell Us.” “Hands off Gaza.” In a song that was relevant then and even more relevant today, the Russian rapper–his stage name is a combination of his nickname “Dynamite” and AK-47–decries the current state of Russian-US and Russian-Ukrainian relations, exhorts Russia’s youth to […]Read more "“Hands off Baghdad”: Dino MC 47, Russia, Regime Change, and America’s Chickens Coming Home to Roost"
Dragon Born Aaron Hodges Enala doesn’t know why, but five years earlier her parents took her away from the city of Chole and have been raising her in Dragon Country ever since, her only friend a Golden dragon named Nerissa. But when an unauthorized adventure goes wrong, Enala decides to make a break for it […]Read more "“Dragon Born” by Aaron Hodges"
Last time we talked about various authors who got inspiration from dreams and visions. This time we’ll talk about practical suggestions for keeping a dream/vision diary and transforming them into something you can actually use. Keep a dream diary. Every morning (or whenever you have a dream), jot down a 1-2 sentence description, or even […]Read more "Invoking the Muse: How to Get Inspiration You Can Use III: Keeping a Dream Diary"
The Flame of Battle Pauline Creeden and Melinda R. Cordell Dyrfinna loves battle, commanding, and dragons. But her dreams of becoming a dragonrider or getting her own command may be in jeopardy because she can’t control her magic–or her temper. After a tragic accident, will her friends and family ever forgive her? This is a […]Read more "“The Flame of Battle” by Melinda R. Cordell and Pauline Creeden"
The Semester of Our Discontent Cynthia Kuhn Lila Maclean, brand-new assistant professor straight out of grad school (Oh, as if! What a delightful fantasy!) has arrived at Stonedale University to start her first job. She knows she’s going to have to watch out for department politics and the intrigues and backstabbing surrounding the tenure process. […]Read more "“The Semester of Our Discontent” by Cynthia Kuhn"
Skip Perrin Briar Jera just wants to see the world. Sometimes you should be careful what you wish for. Soon she’s on the run and skipping around not just in space, but in time. And she may be called upon to save the fabric of the universe itself… “Skip” is a sort of mashup of […]Read more "“Skip” by Perrin Briar"