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Critique Partners enjoying cake

Critique partners are awesome.

August 21, 2013

Basically, you get some other writer you trust, and the two of you swap stories and give each other critique on the work. If you have a good critique partner, you’ll get honest feedback. If you have a shitty critique partner, they’ll just tell you all your stuff is awesome and never give you any recommendations on how to improve or comments on what didn’t “work” for them. (Unless you’re the Holy Grail of writing and every word you put onto paper is as perfect as a baby born via C-section. But you aren’t, so it doesn’t matter.) Ideally, a good critique partner will also be timely. My critique partner is. She’s awesome. In fact, you should go check out her website right now (here it is!). She and I write different genres for different audiences, but that doesn’t really matter since we’re both into reading all different kinds of books. We’re also cousins, so we’re obligated to love one […]

Swill Coffee Shop

And this is why I don’t write at home (if I can avoid it).

August 20, 2013

So I made a terrible discovery today: my favorite coffee shop to sit in and write has closed. Really, though, they just relocated, but they relocated to a place that is inconvenient for me to go because a) it’s far away from where I live, and b) it’s far away from where myself and my Partner in Crime work. Since we carpool to our respective offices and I’m usually the one with the car, if I get off early I’ll swing on by the coffee shop to work on my writing. Today, when I went in to park, I noticed the windows were covered with brown paper. I did what any logical human being in the year 2013 would do: I pulled out my phone and did a quick Google search: DID BIBO’S CLOSE OMFG. No, just kidding. I really just searched the name of the shop and the street it was on. Lo and behold, they closed in June. […]

Outlining in Scrivener

Why outlining is my favorite (and least favorite) part of writing.

August 19, 2013

I’m at the beginning of a new novel, and you know what that means. Yup. I’m outlining. If you read my site before it went down, you’re already familiar with my borderline-violent opinion on how all authors should be outlining (if you didn’t read my site before, don’t worry–I’ll post a bit more on the topic–you can count on that). I outline everything. I outline so thoroughly the outline for my previous books could have been a book itself! (Seriously, it was over 50,000 words long.) I absolutely love outlining, but it’s a pretty tumultuous relationship. There are some pretty wicked awesome things about it, but there are also some sucktastic issues. For one, the single best part about outlining is getting to plan out and conceptualize your story. It’s awesome because you get to run ahead in the story. Instead of waiting to write out a 3,000 word chapter before moving onto the next big exciting plot point, you […]

Red and Hive City

Sneak Peek: Red and Hive City

August 15, 2013

[nivo]When I’m working on a novel, I write short snippets of copy that never actually makes it into the book. These snippets are exercises I do to explore personality, setting, and mood. They help me prepare for actually writing the goddamned book itself, which would be remarkably harder without these exercises than it is with them. Sometimes these exercises are as brief as a few sentences to play with wording, and sometimes they’re pages long. Take a look at this one, and get a sneak peek into my latest WIP. Cheers, –MC * * * The air reeked of potent sterilization–a city too clean to actually be clean. Silver buildings reached high into the starless skyline, reflecting the vibrant oranges and purples of the Empyrean sunset in sharp, geometric forms. He stood back from the rooftop’s edge as he watched rivers of hovering vehicles flow soundlessly around the chrome structures as though they were stones in the water. From where […]

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