Pixar’s Rules of Storytelling

Stones by water

I found this on Reddit. I’m not sure if the story about Pixar is true, but it’s good storytelling advice, for the most part. Of course, if you need an entire book about good writing advice, I recommend Chuck Wendig’s Damn Fine Story:

Writing in Place of Therapy

Stones by water

A former student (Thing 2) is taking an advanced creative writing course at his community college. When I asked him how it was going, he said it was challenging because he was not accustomed to doing creative writing. (How he ended up in advanced creative writing is another story.) But he then went on to complain …read more…

Tips for Writing Good Dialogue

Writing good dialogue is not art. It’s craft, which means that you can get better at it. Here are some tips. Listen to how people talk in real life. Hang out in a coffee shop or a bar and listen to how people talk. (As a writer, you get to call this research.) Often, we think …read more…

About the Lit Project

As anyone knows, the cost of college textbooks is sky-high. One of the advantages of being an English major, however, is that you are studying novels and plays that are available relatively inexpensively in paperback. Quite often you can get them used in the college bookstore for slightly under the price of new, or you can …read more…

Currently Reading (2016.06.08)


So much of what she says about gender is also true of race. A very accessible introduction to modern feminism.

Published on 8 June 2016 at 08:19

Currently Reading (2016.06.04)

Kindred by Octavia Butler.

This book is beautiful and powerful almost beyond my ability to describe it. Definitely one of those “where has this been all my life?” books.

Published on 4 June 2016 at 09:06

Harper Lee’s Sense of Place

With all the excitement about the release of Go Set a Watchman I started thinking about To Kill a Mockingbird and what a magical experience it is. I first read the book when I was 11 or 12 years old; it’s one of those books I tend to pick up and reread every now and …read more…

The Tripods Trilogy by John Christopher

In the not too distant future, Earth has been taken over by aliens (later identified as “Masters”) who travel about in large metal tripods. To control the populace, all humans are “capped” on their fourteenth birthday: their head is shaved and a metallic cap is applied to their head. The cap suppresses curiosity and creativity, …read more…

Book Lists…

I’m not a fan of the “1,000 things you’ve got to see/eat/do/make before you die” books (1,000 seems a tad ambitious), but I do like lists. I make lists all the time, so when someone else makes a list, I pay attention, especially when that list is about books. Amazon has a list of “100 …read more…

The Sword of Shannara by Terry Brooks

Throughout middle and high school my friends and I paid a lot of attention to what the others were reading. We didn’t spend much time talking about books, but we noticed what the others were reading and asked for recommendations, something that we, as boys, never asked a teacher. This was before the internet and …read more…

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