choreographing the Aleutian cackling goose

Exposition is risky - and necessary. At it's best exposition provides critical back story, or foreshadowing, it can enhance character development and help to convey place, time, and atmospheric subtleties that are not appropriate for dialogue. Used with patience, pacing and economy, exposition feels 'invisible' to the reader, it enhances story without intruding. A good way … Continue reading choreographing the Aleutian cackling goose

cry wolf

“Literature was not born the day when a boy crying "wolf, wolf" came running out of the Neanderthal valley with a big gray wolf at his heels; literature was born on the day when a boy came crying "wolf, wolf" and there was no wolf behind him.”  Vladimir Nabokov, Lectures on Literature Take us to the moment … Continue reading cry wolf

Frankenstein and redemption

Think of your stories as your Frankensteins –made from the lost limbs stitched together, and animated by the cell memories, of people you’ve known. What shape will they take, grafted together in a plot that requires they move in synchrony. Built into this unnatural union is the tragedy and yearning it takes to invent redemption.  photo:Rosendahl

jumpstart love

Writing a compelling, visceral love scene can be the most daunting of challenges - how many times have you tried, without success, to evoke the eroticism, tension, suspense and thrill of first contact?   The temptation is to make it too obvious, too easy. Or to fall into the trap of 'happily ever after'. We might … Continue reading jumpstart love