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Tag Archives: online workshop
When I first advertised that I’d be teaching an online writing class devoted to writing fantasy and science fiction stories, Todd Vandermark, the tireless editor of the SFWA blog, mailed me asking if I’d write a blog post about it. Sure, I said — only let me do it first so I have something to write about. I’m two thirds of the way through, and now I’ve got something to say… Continue reading
Landscape and long descriptions are often a feature of fantasy and science fiction. Often the purpose is to look gee-whiz pretty, but it can inform the story in many ways. Here, for example, is the beginning of Gormenghast:
Gormenghast, that is, the main massing of the original stone, taken by itself would have displayed a certain ponderous architectural quality were it possible to have ignored the circumfusion of those mean dwellings that swarmed like an epidemic around its outer walls. They sprawled over the sloping earth, each one half way over its neighbor until, held back by the castle ramparts, the innermost of these hovels laid hold on the great walls, clamping themselves thereto like limpets to a rock. These dwellings, by ancient law, were granted this chill intimacy with the stronghold that loomed above them. Over their irregular roofs would fall throughout the season, the shadows of time-eaten buttresses, of broken and lofty turrets, and, most enormous of all, the shadow of the Tower of Flints. This tower, patched unevenly with black ivy, arose like a mutilated finger from among the fists of knuckled masonry and pointed blasphemously at heaven. At night the owls made of it an echoing throat; by day it stood voiceless and cast its long shadow.
NOTE: These classes are past. You can find the current listing of classes here. Given what a success the first round of classes has been and how much darn FUN they are to teach, I’m going to try to make … Continue reading
If I did an editing class, what sorts of things would people want to know? Here's some things that occur to me, but I'd like to know what else would be useful. – How magazines work and what an editor … Continue reading
We talked last week about story shapes and arcs as well as what gets set up in the beginning of a story. This week we talked about characters and dialogue, and how the first shapes the story. One of the … Continue reading
I’ll be posting notes after each Wednesday session, which all three classes can use to ask questions about or comment on what we covered. I encourage the students to hop into the discussion here, but it’s also open to the public.