Jake Bible: When Worlds Collide

Hey folks, today we’re welcoming our friend and special guest, Jake Bible, who has a brand new book coming out! Sit back and relax with a cup of coffee while Jake tells you all about Stone Cold Bastards.

An idea hit me one evening. That’s not unusual. I get most of my ideas in the evening right before switching the light off and going to sleep. This is why the Notes feature on my iPhone is invaluable. The idea started as a title: Stone Cold Bastards. I just absolutely loved that title. The trick was, I needed a premise to go with it. While titles sell books, it helps to have an actual story inside the book. Readers like that. What possible story could I write that worked for a title like Stone Cold Bastards? By the morning, my brain had worked it out. Wasn’t hard. It’s in the […]

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What I Learned About Writing From Watching TV

By Gail Z. Martin

I stopped following new shows on TV back in grad school because my crazy schedule meant I could never keep up with the latest episodes (yes, that was before DVR and Netflix). I spent the 90s watching a lot of TV but it was PBS Kids and Magic School Bus, with a few exceptions like Babylon 5 and a little bit of ST:NG (I missed Firefly the first time around).

So it’s only been relatively recently that I’ve gone back to catching up on shows on Netflix and video, and following some that are still running. (For a while, I was afraid to get hooked on a show still in production because as soon as I fell for it, it got cancelled. Lookin’ at you, Beauty and the Beast with Linda Hamilton!)

I can’t completely take off my author hat as I watch shows. I’m always […]

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The Dream

Today is Martin Luther King Day, our annual observance of the birthday of the amazing civil rights leader who led a wave of social change for our country. Then, the change was for the better. Today we’re facing a new wave of change, one that terrifies many of us. There has been talk of interning people over their religious beliefs, and of taking away access to healthcare. It’s frightening, and it’s the kind of talk that might convince many to put their heads, down, keep quiet and hope to not be noticed. But the thing about us here at MW…we’re writers. We’re the people who don’t keep quiet, who share the words and tell the truth. We’re the trees by the river who refuse to move. It’s up to us to stand with our neighbors, no matter the color of their skin, the accent of their voice or the clothing […]

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Slide On The Ice

When Magical Words asked me to write up a post for January, to go with the release of THE COLD EYE (Book 2 of The Devil’s West, ready for you to buy TODAY!), I suggested “writing the second book in an open-ended series and how to keep your sanity while doing it” as a topic.

There’s just one problem with that topic. I have no idea how to do it. I’m not even sure if it’s possible, honestly.

Seriously, I’ve done this “open-ended, multi-book series” thing three times now (four, if you count the novellas). And each time, I hit the same second-book Oh Fuck moment, that coal-squishing pressure of not only keeping everything straight and connected and clear from book one to book two, but also setting up threads to be used in books three, four, and five (and maybe six and seven too, if you’re keeping options open). […]

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Quick-Tip Tuesday: Shaking Up Our Creative Routines

As those of you who follow me on Facebook [giving the hairy eyeball to those who don’t follow me on Facebook] might have noticed, I finished the first draft of my work-in-progress this past week. It’s the first book in a new project — a time-travel, epic fantasy series about which I’m incredibly excited. The series will be called The Islevale Cycle, and the book’s title (for now at least) is Time’s Children. It came in at 140,000 words or so — 570 pages.

I’ve written here about this book a couple of times this year. I have struggled with it for a while. I couldn’t outline it and so wrote it kind of on the fly. I wrote myself into a narrative dead end at one point, and had to put it away for literally three-quarters of a year before I figured out what I’d done to foul things […]

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Quick-Tip Tuesday: Deadlines!

As the year winds down, and I start considering all the work I need to get done in the next few weeks, my mind naturally turns to the topic of deadlines. Deadlines are one of the harsh realities of life as a professional writer. We are always working under one deadline or another; often we face several at once, some of them external, some of them self-imposed. I am looking at four looming deadlines right now, one that I established myself, one that is contractual, one for a short story that I promised to a friend [waves at Misty], and another for an anthology to which I’d like to submit another story.

Writing to deadline is something pros do. Ask any writer what he or she feels is a defining characteristic of a professional writer and s/he is bound to mention hitting deadlines. If we can’t hand in work on […]

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Quick-Tip Tuesday: Taking Stock and Soldiering On

It’s been a hard fall, at the end of a tough year. At times like these, when we mourn lost friends, or deal with fears and unexpected disappointments of any sort, it seems that even sitting down to write a page or two is more than we can manage.

On occasion, we here at MW urge you to take a day or two away from writing to enjoy life, to immerse yourself in the pleasures of family and friends, of beloved hobbies, of the simple joys of taking a walk, or reading a book. But at other times, writing can actually be our escape. The world isn’t always a friendly place; real life just sucks now and then. So write. Dive into your worlds, your characters, your storylines. Draw upon the emotions evoked by the real world, but live in those places you’ve created. It helps. Or rather, it helps […]

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