Category Archives: Writing

Recent Reading: Wolves, Wives, Knives, Curses, A Hospital, and a Henchgirl

The works read but yet to be reviewed are piling up, so here’s a new roundup to clear away part of the deluge. The Mere Wife by Maria Dahvana Headley is a retelling of Beowulf from the monster’s point of … Continue reading

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Tim Cooper’s The Reader: War For The Oaks

This is my first review for The Green Man Review, but I cannot help but feel I have somehow come full circle from the moment in a 2005 World Fantasy Convention bar when someone kept telling me how much they … Continue reading

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Catherynne M. Valente’s Space Opera

It is difficult to describe how Catherynne M. Valente’s new book Space Opera manages to be so wonderfully resonant of Douglas Adams’ The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy yet so insistently, inimitably her own. And yet, that’s the challenge. Valente’s … Continue reading

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Recent New Processes and the Results: How I’m Managing 5k Words a Day

I came back from PNWA this year inspired by talking to Chris Fox, author of 5,000 Words an Hour, and adopted a new writing process, which has several parts. I want to emphasize that I’m pretty sure this is not … Continue reading

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An Armload of Fur and Leaves

In the last year or so, I found a genre that hadn’t previously been on my radar, but which I really enjoy: furry fiction. Kyell Gold had put up his novel Black Angel on the SFWA member forums, where members … Continue reading

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On Writing: Chekhov’s Gun Store

One of playwright Anton Chekhov’s most quoted maxims is this: If in Act I you have a pistol hanging on the wall, then it must fire in the last act. If you establish an expectation in the reader, particularly a … Continue reading

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Guest Post: Dan Koboldt on Magic Versus Technology in SF/F

It’s always bothered me that fantasy and science fiction get lumped together into a single category. The two genres seem very different, at least on the surface. Fantasy usually features some kind of magic as a core speculative element. It often takes place in a secondary world at a pre-industrial state of technology. Science fiction, in contrast, usually takes us to the future in which some as-yet-nonexistent technology underlies the plot. Granted, there’s a huge overlap between fantasy and science fiction fandoms. Maybe that means we live for escapism, whether to a fantasy world or outer space.
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Stay the Course

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Interview with Sherwood Smith on Omniscient Point of View in the Inda Series

Recently the question of omniscient POV has come up in several classes, so I started reading some examples of it. One of the best I hit was Sherwood Smith’s Inda series. I figured, why not go to Sherwood and ask some questions about how she pulled that off.
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Playing at Being Motivated: Habitica for Writers

One thing that was fascinating about this year’s Nebulas was the chance to meet so many people in the publishing industry, including a couple of the founders of Habitica.

Habitica is a motivational game. It lets you gamify your daily tasks and to-do list, turning them into challenges you face in the game. As you complete tasks, you gain levels and items in the game, giving you an extra push to get things done. You can also set it up so you lose points for doing things, if there’s habits you want to avoid. There’s a social aspect; you can join parties and guilds in order to share your progress with friends.

I am always on a quest for a method that will help me stay organized. Various systems have come and gone, some more successful than others, and I’ve learned a few things about how to make such systems more effective. As I share how I am using Habitica, I’ll include some insight into how that knowledge shapes that use. I’ve been logging into it consistently for two weeks now, and I believe it’s going to stick, because I’m finding it very effective for a) nudging me to do things, b) helping me remember stuff, and c) motivating me to use free time and options (like snacks) better.
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