5 timeless pieces of advice from Beloved author Toni Morrison

nothing in the rulebook

Few writers consistently and exuded as much visionary force as beloved author Toni Morrison, who has died today at the age of 88. The author of 11 novels, she won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1993, having published her first novel, The Bluest Eye, in 1970.

In her stunning Nobel prize acceptance speech (which you can read and listen to in full right here on Nothing in the Rulebook), she said: “We die. That may be the meaning of life. But we do language. That may be the measure of our lives.”

As the tributes to this towering force within literature flow in, we have gathered together some of her finest pieces of advice – for writers, as well as for human beings.

1. The past is not over

In what is perhaps the finest ‘commencement’ address of all time, in her speech at Wellesley College in…

View original post 624 more words

Advertisements

What Matters More? Story Execution or the Idea? – by Janice Hardy…

Chris The Story Reading Ape's Blog

on Fiction University:

The age-old quandary–is a well-written novel novel better than a great idea?

Idea or execution. Two directions many writers struggle with.

Should they write the technically perfect book and not worry about the idea, or find the perfect story and not worry about the writing?

The realty is that each takes precedence at different points of a writer’s career.

Continue reading HERE

View original post

7 Tips to Writing Factions in Fiction

Legends of Windemere

Fairy Tail Guild

Many stories have a ‘faction’ part of their world.  It can be obvious with feuding guilds or opposing armies.  Other times, you can miss it because you’re only introduced to one of the groups and merely hear about the others.  You can even have factions turn up in a more modern setting in the form of cliques and other 21st century lingo.  So, what are some things to consider when creating factions?

  1. They don’t always have to be political or religious.  I know it’s tempting to go for that aspect of humanity, but it isn’t necessary.  In fact, one might say that avoiding such a touchy subject would get you more attention.  Other options are family, friends, school clubs, competing for jobs, or resource seeking.  You would be surprised how much more you can get out of avoiding the two most overused subjects.
  2. There has to be…

View original post 402 more words

Jamaica Is Using Bob Marley’s Legacy to Market Austerity

Repeating Islands

Screen Shot 2019-07-16 at 11.10.05 PM.png

The reggae icon would be embarrassed by his country’s attempts to rebrand a disastrous ideology.
A report by Keston Perry for The Nation.

Our thanks to Liz DeLoughrey for bringing this item to our attention.

The island nation of Jamaica holds a special, almost spiritual significance for many people of color, as well as for anyone concerned about advancing equality and justice in the world. It is the birthplace of the Rastafari movement, reggae, dancehall—and democratic socialism before it became popular in the United States. Bob Marley’s legacy epitomizes the struggle for transforming an economy and society using its natural resources, its culture and industrious people. Marley himself strived to overturn an unfair global economic system that oppressed black Jamaicans and people of color everywhere.

However, since Marley’s death almost four decades ago, Jamaica’s economy has not done much for working people. In Jamaica, one-fifth of the population

View original post 1,457 more words

5 Mistakes Male Authors Make When Writing Female Characters [Guest Post]

You may have watched or heard of the “reality TV show” What Not to Wear. Well, this post is about what not to write when it comes to female characters. Though I’m not a dude, I want to make sure I never fall into these male gaze problems, due to the patriarchal society that I live in. #WriterWednesday #WritingSmarter #That’sWhatHeSaid

Richie Billing

If you enjoyed this post, why not stay in touch to receive more? Subscribers also receive a free ebook on the craft of writing, lists of publishers of short and long fantasy fiction, a list of book reviewers, and a bunch of short stories. All you need to do is complete the form below!


Today I’m delighted to introduce Savannah Cordova, a talented writer with Reedsy. Savannah has tackled a topic I follow both with interest and despair.

Some men still seem to have a problem writing women, and most of the time I think it’s inadvertent. Simply misguided. But that’s no excuse. A common issue that I see crop up is the objectifying descriptions of women. Bizarre similes for describing boobs, over-zealous descriptions of body shape. I’m sure if women wrote in detail about men’s cocks and bollocks there’d be something of a stir. And a complaint would…

View original post 1,507 more words

Review: Magic for Liars

Oooh, I love book reviews! #WriterWednesday

Eboni J. Dunbar

You can find Magic For Liars on sale at Amazon or any fine independent retailer. I listened to the Audiobook and have to say that I love Xe Sands as a narrator.

You may have noticed from my work that I’m a sucker for magic. Magic for Liars by Sarah Gailey is a fantastic debut novel that is pouring with power and prophesy.

Non-Spoiler Description: When a teacher at a prestigious magic school is seemingly murdered, Private Investigator Ivy Gamble, non-magician, is called in to help investigate. She discovers a world of secrets, danger and lies, non-greater than her own. I would describe this novel as Harry Potter & The Magicians meets Cormoran Strike.

I love Ivy as a main character. She’s been stuck in the shadow of her sister, a magician, since the moment her sister’s magic was discovered and though she enjoys her work, she’s still dealing…

View original post 618 more words

[Poll Results] Overused Character Tropes in Fantasy

Thank you, Richie, for this fabulously informational post! I will use this to plan my fantasy WIP. 🙂

Richie Billing

If you enjoy this kind of post, why not stay in touch by joining my writing community? Everyone who joins receives a free ebook on the craft of writing, lists of publishers of short and long fantasy fiction, and a list of 100 book reviewers. Just fill out the form below!


The point ought to be made at the outset that this post is by no means intended to discourage writers from writing their stories in a particular way. Rather, the purpose of this research is to give writers an insight into readers’ minds with the hope of helping them with their craft.

Tried and tested tropes are popular for a reason—they work. People like them. They make for enjoyable, engaging reads. And many of these tropes are synonymous with the fantasy genre, a genre that at the moment seems to be taking a step back and looking at itself…

View original post 1,202 more words