You know what’s fun? WRITING! Writing is fun. And that, more than anything else, is why we do it.
Or at least it’s why we decided to do it. Making sure that it is still fun is kind of tricky. Also tricky? Writing for nothing more than the fun of it. And this episode is about that.
Missing from this episode: Mary. For contractual reasons we found ourselves in need of 54 episodes during Season 9, and that meant an emergency recording session while Mary was on the road. It also meant you got 54 weekly episodes this year!
Podcast: Play in new window | Download (Duration: 15:47 — 10.8MB)
What’s a reluctant character? Well, it’s somebody who needs to be dragged along into the adventure, somebody who isn’t the sort of self-motivated, go-getter that we so often populate our books with. These characters feel a lot like real people — our world is full of folks like this. The trick lies in making these characters interesting to read.
We offer some examples from things we’ve read, some general structural tricks, and some of the tools we’ve used in our own work, including examples from Glamour in Glass, The Way of Kings, and The Hollow City.
Podcast: Play in new window | Download (Duration: 17:00 — 11.7MB)
Create a character who is either weak or reluctant, determine why they are weak or reluctant, and then write the decision point.
Celebromancy, by Michael R. Underwood, narrated by Mary Robinette Kowal, who gets to make a light-saber noise as part of the narration…
It’s time for our fourth “Project in Depth” episode, and now Dan Wells is on the spot. The Hollow City is Dan’s latest book, and while it’s not a new John Cleaver book, it’s still a supernatural thriller with a tight psychological focus.
Spoilers galore, of course. If you haven’t read The Hollow City yet, go read it before listening to this episode.
Dan’s New Twitter Handle: Per Howard’s suggestion, @JohnCleaver has been retired in favor of @TheDanWells.
Podcast: Play in new window | Download (Duration: 21:35 — 14.8MB)
Go find an interesting mental illness (quick, before Dan takes all the good ones.) Now write from the sufferer’s POV, but don’t tell us what’s actually wrong.