Kathy Carlton Willis

For Readers

Why I’m Thankful for Books

This Thanksgiving season I issued a challenge to list reasons to be thankful for books. In fact, I think books top the list for non-breathing objects of my gratitude—it even seems as if books do breath. When I learned to read, new worlds opened up to me. Even though I grew up in a town of 4,000 people, I felt like the entire world was as close as the nearest book.

Read more

Eddie Jones

Genre Happenings

Plotting, Not Plodding

We remember characters, but we pitch plot.

Imagine a story without problems: The journey begins; the journey ends. Nice scenery, a few postcard moments, and one big yawn. Without trouble, conflict, and a crisis, there’s no story and nothing to recall. How can you laugh about the bad times later if there aren’t any? Struggle is the substance of life, and a story filled with character angst and torment pulls us in.

Read more
Colleen Coble

For Writers

The Joy of Revisions

Yeah, yeah, yeah. I heard you complaining about having to change your novel. I’m here to change your mind. I felt the way you do once upon a time. But that was before I realized what a blessing it is to have such focus on my work. That was before I realized we authors are too close to our work to see it clearly.

Here’s my process.

Read more
Brandilyn Collins

Making A Scene

Subtexting In Dialogue
Part 2

Last month we looked at subtexted dialogue—when the meaning is hidden beneath the words—and how to use the TIME elements of Thought, Inflection, Movement, and Expression to show real meaning.

Now, here is the scene I promised you from Getting into Character, using only five words of dialogue to introduce us to...

Read more
Graham Garrison

Author By Night

Embracing The Red

The manuscript for my first novel, Hero’s Tribute, was returned to me stained in red. I’d just received the first round of edits from the publisher, and as I thumbed through the pages, I noticed that the chapter I’d enjoyed writing the most had a note posted at the top. The chapter contained a few thousand words, basically a description of the small town of Talking Creek: its high school football team...

Read more

Can you think of a column?