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December 2011

Dreaming the map: the efficiency of magic

You can't assume that someone who takes a day to write six words must be a finer artist and greater writer than someone who writes sixteen thousand: after all, would you say that Yeats is a greater writer than Dickens? And, indeed, you'll know how valuable I think the NaNoWriMo approach to first drafts "building up without tearing down" can be. And then novelist Sally Hinchcliffe pointed me to this post. Rachel Aaron explains how, with a new baby, and some very tight deadlines for a new novel, she had to re-think radically how she worked. I approached it rather... Read more →


The Prig's Writ, and Other Writers' Stories

In the comments on my post How Don't You Do It?, Glen says that he's been in writers' groups where: they regard any form of deliberate intentionality in the first draft stage (as opposed to the later reworking stages) to be completely noxious to any eventual artistic merit. Now, this is all fine, but then these authors seem to imply that EVERYONE has to do it this way, or else you're being a fool to yourself and a burden to others (so to speak.) I know exactly the kind of conversation Glen means - and I speak as one who's... Read more →