writerly ramblings

Hey Christians! Stop Ruining Young Writers!

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Recently, in an attempt to advertise a site that I no longer write for, I joined a couple of Christian writers groups on Facebook. After I quit the site, I was too lazy to unsubscribe from them (and managing Facebook notifications makes me want to punch a wall), so I still see the new posts. I also follow a lot of Christian blogs, usually by people who claim to be fiction writers.

And a lot of what I see is deeply disturbing to me, both as a Christian and a writer. (more…)

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How to Critique Creative Writing: A Comprehensive Guide for Readers

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One of the biggest problems I see facing young writers is a lack of constructive criticism. Bad books get self-published because friends and family didn’t want to be mean. People are delusional that they’re good writers because no one has ever told them otherwise.

And it’s hard, giving negative feedback. But it’s necessary. It’s so, so necessary. (more…)

gtfo tumblr: On Accidentally Racist Villains

Tumblr is a cesspit of bad advice and poorly constructed arguments, but thing that really gets my goat is the plethora of bad writing advice on there and, consequently, floating around on Pinterest. Why does this bother me so much, you ask? Well, for one, because I have a hard time passing up correcting people I know are blatantly wrong. But the real reason is this: in the era of self-publishing, there’s a plethora of really, really bad fiction. Like, really bad. Seriously. And do you know where most of it comes from? Dear little tumblr users taking this terrible advice because they know no better. So, in the name of bettering the fiction of the future (and a little for my own gratification), I am starting a column in which I correct some of the terrible advice I see on tumblr. Enjoy. (more…)

Magic, Mischief, and a Little Bit of Chicken Fried

is for magic.

In which I weave together writing advice and my feelings while listening to Zac Brown Band.

M is for mischief.

In which I talk about the major downsides of an INTJ personality, specifically mine. And maybe weave in more writing advice, for any of you trying to write one.

M is for muffins.

Because I made some this morning and they were delicious, and I felt like I needed a third item in this list. (more…)

MBTI and Writing

So I have a theory. Actually, I have two theories that melded into one. Or rather, one theory that branched off two ways? I’m not totally sure, because it all happened at one time in my brain. So maybe it’s a hundred little theories all coming together into this one blog post. Whatever. You don’t care.

My theory is this: Your strengths as a writer can be determined through your Myers-Briggs personality type. I mean, obviously, right? Your personality influences how you see the world. But what if it could be broken down so that each strength was attached to one specific part of your personality? (more…)

A Short Subjunctive Rant

No, I didn’t mean subjective, though this will be that, too.

If you’ve ever learned a foreign language, you know what the subjunctive tense is. It’s the “if” verb tense, the one that accompanies things that might happen. English has a subjunctive tense, though it’s largely ignored. You probably use it without knowing it, and only use it correctly about half the time. If that. (more…)

On Writing and Reading

They say, if you want to be a writer, read. This is, of course, true. You’re not going to get a feel for the language if you’re not experiencing it through the lens of people who are much better at putting it together than you are.

Fitzgerald, Austen, Tolkien, Kerouac. Salinger, Twain, Melville, Wilde. And so many more. There’s a reason that many of the sentences considered the most beautiful in the English language were written by them. (more…)