In Which My Toddler Helps Me Think Of “Character” In A New Way

Our son, the one we call “B-Dub,” thinks of the people in his life abstractly. Example: if he sees a magazine ad featuring the car you drive, he’ll point to it and say your name. If he sees a spot on the floor where one of the dogs likes to lie down, he’ll say that dog’s name. But it can be even more abstract, to the point where it takes us time to figure out what the connection is —  like it’s a little bit of a puzzle. He pointed... Read The Rest →

How Chuck Wendig Writes A Novel

This year, I’ve written — *checks psychic spreadsheet* — four novels. Bait Dog, Gods & Monsters: Unclean Spirits, Dinocalypse Now, and (finishing up this week), The Blue Blazes. I also wrote a novella, Bad Blood, which includes the next appearance of everybody’s favorite vampire-in-Zombieland, Coburn. By this year I also have — *consults little man who lives in my mind* — five novels out in the world. Blackbirds, Mockingbird, Double Dead, Dinocalypse Now, and Bait Dog. (I apparently like ‘b’ and ‘d’ words. Eventually I’ll write one giant magnum opus... Read The Rest →

Why Stories Should Never Begin At The Beginning

I was in a car accident. Relax — I wasn’t really. I mean, I’ve had car accidents in my life. None recently. None dramatic. But, let’s just pretend: I was in a car accident. Let’s pretend I’m telling you that, right now. This is me telling you the story. We’re sitting across from each other at a cafe or strip club or on a bench watching squirrels humping. And I say, “I was in a car accident.” And you say — after that look on your face falls away —... Read The Rest →

25 Ways To Unstick A Stuck Story

You’re teats-deep in a story. And it feels like instead of swimming forward, your boots are stuck in the wet mud below. You need something to churn the waters. Loosen the mud. You need to unstick the stuck story. Here, then — a list of 25 ways to help you do that. Most of these are plot- or story-focused — meaning, practical efforts to open that pickle jar. If you’re looking for solutions that lie beyond that focus and, say, land on you as a writer, maybe check out “25... Read The Rest →

In Which I Am Interviewed, And Captured On Film Like The Sasquatch

I am interviewed! On video, no less. Which is always an awkward experiment that I hesitate to punish you with — but there it is, just the same. I assume you’ll forgive me. Just stare into the beard. It makes all things better. Warmer. Fuzzier. Anyway. I talk about all kinds of stuff: traditional publishing versus self-publishing, metaphor, horror, outlining, porn. I round the bases. I cover all the essential elemental elements and essences. Thanks to Joanna Penn of The Creative Penn for having me. If you don’t want to... Read The Rest →

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