Laws of Magic: Less is More

It’s counterintuitive, isn’t it, that magic—this concept that makes possibilities endless—can actually be better when you give it boundaries? Part of the lure of magic is that it’s mysterious, right? Not necessarily. The draw of fantasy for many is not only passively experiencing, but learning a new world: understanding it well enough to work out […]

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The Science of Magic

One of the biggest protests to reading fantasy is, “Well, magic means anything can happen and it doesn’t have to make sense.” I’ve read books like that–I call one of them out below–and I agree. They’re problematic. People want to read books with plots that, you know, work. Magic can’t just come in and clean out […]

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William Faulkner Teaches Fantasy

In my last post, I argued that reading classic literature can help inspire our writing of speculative fiction. To demonstrate this principle, I’ll (over time) write several posts describing how my own reading and teaching of classic English literature has enriched and enlarged my views of what spec-fic can do. For the sake of argument, […]

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The Best YA Hero

“Do you want Wendy’s or Arby’s?” he asked me. I pursed my lips, thinking. “Arby’s it is,” he said, turning the car. That’s right: he apparently knew that I wanted a beef and cheddar sandwich from the way my lips were scrunched. It’s interactions like these that make my husband Cap  feel like a mind-reader. […]

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Living In-Between

Did you know that natural childbirth enthusiasts don’t tend to like hospitals? If you’re a mom, you probably just barked a laugh. Tell us something we don’t know. Also, why are you talking about this on a writing blog? I’ll get to that second question later. For now, more about childbirth! If you’re a mom, […]

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Growing Up Geeky

These days, geeks have it made. Whether you’re DC or Marvel, Star Wars or Star Trek, you’re getting love from mainstream media: ALL THE REBOOTS! With, like, famous and good-looking actors! Millions of dollars to update your chosen franchise! And the once-impossible-to-find-paraphernalia of your chosen fandom? Stores at the mall! ThinkGeek! Barnes & Noble, for […]

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