Category Archives: Books and writing

Dashing through the snow

Thousand Islands Life online magazine has just published an article I wrote telling the story of a little known prisoner of war escape attempt across the ice of the frozen St Lawrence River in 1942. I corresponded with the escapee, … Continue reading

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How Amazon makes it unnecessary to eat a rotten egg

Fashions change in writing as do readers’ tastes. Some of this is just popular culture preferences and some is the result of technology. One technology driven change is the increasing importance of a book’s beginning. Of course, savvy writers already … Continue reading

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The Undiscovered Country

When fiction is set in a specific time and place, getting the details right can be enriching; getting them wrong can be distracting, like a constant reminder that it’s just make-believe. (See my post about the Pizza Theory of Historical … Continue reading

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The Pizza Theory of historical exposition

Too many historical novels, or stories that are set in some other time and place run afoul of what I call the Pizza Theory of Historical Exposition, or simply the Pizza Theory for short. (BTW, please feel free to use … Continue reading

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“What the Hell…” endings

Many readers will say that the purpose of reading a book is the experience of reading, not the ending. Otherwise, why not just skip to the last few pages? It would be like skipping to the last few minutes of … Continue reading

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What makes a character memorable?

If you have ever written fiction, or simply wanted to write fiction, you’ve come up against one of the most important questions in writing; how do you make memorable characters? There is no simple answer to this, but I’ll try … Continue reading

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How to ruin a Facebook presence

I went to a writing conference yesterday and there was a lot of talk about a “Facebook presence” as a means for authors to keep in touch with readers. Of course, this is a good idea, but I’ve noticed there … Continue reading

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