My Achilles Heels

There’s a reason they say write drunk, edit sober. Your inhibitions should be down while you’re writing and doubled while you’re editing.

Psh.

That Book Ouch Moment

Diversity in race, sexuality, socioeconomic background and more in YA books plays a fundamental role in providing young people with a sense of identity, belonging and validity.

Most of the time.

Conflict, Inside and Out

External conflict on its own rarely stands up as being big enough, emotional enough or important enough. Yes, external factors are important in keeping a story moving, but internal factors are the driving force behind character arc and development, and our pathways to making two-dimensional, imaginary characters human. Real. 

Don’t Start at the Beginning

As wonderful as my character’s tragic backstory or hushed conversation might be, none of that matters an iota if I don’t get the beginning right.

What I Meant to Say Was…

Listening to the world around you – yes, perhaps more than is polite – is a surefire way to realistically represent the world around you, no matter the setting, time period or characters. 

What’s the Point (of View)?

Let’s delve a little into point of view choice between first, second and third, and see what influencers, challenges and story elements will help us make our decisions about which to use. 

Beware the Mary-Sue

Before we can avoid writing her, or accidentally scare ourselves into a corner and avoid writing women altogether, it’s important to ask: What exactly is a Mary Sue, and why don’t we want one?