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Quote of the day
In mountaineering, if you’re stuck in a bad situation and you don’t know the right way out, you just have to pick a direction and go. It doesn’t have to be the best direction; there may not even be a best direction. You certainly don’t have enough information to know for sure. So if you start down a path and end up at a cliff, you’ll just have to pick another direction from there. Because guess what? In a dire situation, you can’t be certain of the right path; what you do know is that if you sit there and do nothing, you’re screwed.
~ALEX KORB, author of The Upward Spiral: Using Neuroscience to Reverse the Course of Depression, One Small Change at a Time
- Voice: The Soul of your Story, Writers Helping Writers | Tweet
Soul. It’s a word applied to many different media. For just a moment, let’s consider it from a musical standpoint. Stevie Wonder. Aretha Franklin. Marvin Gaye. Not just anyone can sing and play this kind of music successfully; a certain je ne sais quoi is required in bringing down the house and moving people to their very souls. Is it really any different when it comes to books?
Finding Your Voice: How to Put Personality in Your Writing
Science Fiction and Fantasy Worldbuilding: Timeline Adds Crucial Details, Fiction Notes | Tweet
One of the first tasks in revising my current WIP has been to nail down a firm time line for my story. When does all this stuff happen? I had it vaguely placed in the 21st century, but I didn’t want to nail it down specifically.
How to Write Science Fiction & Fantasy
- What I Learned From My 5 Favourite Jackie Collins Novels, Writers Write | Tweet
I think millions of fans were shocked by the sudden passing of Hollywood novelist, Jackie Collins, a writer hailed as both a ‘raunchy moralist’ and ‘the Marcel Proust of Hollywood’. While I was devastated, the first thing I did was start re-reading some of my favourite titles by this bestselling author. I realised I’d learned so much about page-turning storytelling secrets from her over the last 20 years that I thought I’d share them in this blog post.
Series List – Jackie Collins – In Order: Novels and Books
How to Defeat Your Perfectionism in Writing, The Write Practice | Tweet
I struggle with perfectionism in my writing, but I’ve learned to beat it back with a few large sticks—and it’s my pleasure to teach you my tools of the trade.
Quit Talking, Start Writing! The Procrastinator’s Guide for Beginner Writers: 14 Simple Steps to Overcome Perfectionism and Procrastination: Writing Blueprint for Beginner Authors and Writers
- CRAFT: Reveal Your Character In Just One Second!, Script Mag | Tweet
It’s a visual medium. Use it. And we’ve been conditioned for the last 20 years (thank you MTV and Raiders of the Lost Ark) to take in visual data very fast. So dream up something in your script that just takes one second to see but reveals TONS of information about your character.
How to Write Great Characters: The Key to Your Hero’s Growth and Transformation
- Script Analysis: “Dallas Buyers Club” – Part 3: Sequences, Go Into The Story | Tweet
A sequence is simply a collection of scenes in a screenplay that have their own narrative arc and they have been around since the earliest days of cinema. Arising from this is something known as the sequence approach.
Truth-Telling and Platform-Building, Jane Friedman | Tweet
When I finally came around to learning something about the business of platform-building, I soon discovered that there is a mountain of advice out there. But one point, above all, seemed clear: If you want to attract an audience to your site, you need to offer something people want.
Create Your Writer Platform: The Key to Building an Audience, Selling More Books, and Finding Success as an Author
7 Rules to be Successful as an Author, The Book Designer | Tweet
What does success look like to you? As an author? For your book? Is it huge book sales? Recognition of your expertise? Being featured in the media? What about accolades from audiences who have heard you speak? Getting a call from a NY publisher that it wants your book? Being on the New York Times Bestseller list? What?
- It’s time to end the tyranny of olive oil, The Washington Post | Tweet
On a weekend morning not long ago, I found myself in the kitchen, near the burner, whisking eggs while a pan absorbed the heat from a light flame. I was making breakfast for a few friends. The mood was light. The coffee was dark. Music played in the background, and everyone sat silently, anticipating the meal. That is, until I reached for the butter.
Extra Virginity: The Sublime and Scandalous World of Olive Oil
- New Neuroscience Reveals 4 Rituals That Will Make You Happy, Barking Up the Wrong Tree | Tweet
You get all kinds of happiness advice on the internet from people who don’t know what they’re talking about. Don’t trust them. Actually, don’t trust me either. Trust neuroscientists. They study that gray blob in your head all day and have learned a lot about what truly will make you happy.
The Upward Spiral: Using Neuroscience to Reverse the Course of Depression, One Small Change at a Time
The elite don’t hand out resources like the rest of us, Ars Technica | Tweet
Economic inequality in the US has drawn attention to the attitudes and behaviors of the elite, as those who are educated in the top universities are both likely to start out wealthy and disproportionately likely to have an impact on the future of this country.
For many Americans, life has become all competition all the time.
Opting Out?: Why Women Really Quit Careers and Head Home
I highly recommend you stop reading this and just go read his actual essays, but if you’re short on time, I’ve cropped the most important pieces from my favorite essays below.
Zero to One: Notes on Startups, or How to Build the Future