In Praise of Boring Stories: Our Desensitization to Conflict

I return today to a question that has arisen frequently on this blog, that nagging issue in fiction I've not yet been satisfied with my own answers to, that I feel like this week I've stumbled haphazard into a new idea about--today, let's circle back to that question of conflict. When I taught high school... Continue Reading →

Perfect Contradiction: a few gems from Alan Hollinghurst’s “The Line of Beauty”

Last week, I began reading Alan Hollinghurst's The Line of Beauty, a brilliant tour of Thatcher-era upperclass London, narrated in close third-person focus on unabashed gay hedonist Nick Guest. Although the window into Nick's world is undoubtedly fascinating, it is Hollinghurst's writing that I have been most entranced by. And that's what I'd like to... Continue Reading →

A Plotter Pantsing: what I’ve learned, and what I’m still trying to figure out

In Twitter's #WritingCommunity, the discussion of plotting and pantsing our stories is a common thread. Plotting, the careful outlining of a story before writing, and pantsing, the seat-of-our-pants, unplanned, accepting-what-comes creation of a story, each draws a crowd of strong adherents. Out foraging for mushrooms this week, we came across this beautiful chanterelle, late for... Continue Reading →

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