Why We Tell Stories

From SCIENTIFIC AMERICAN It is in our nature to need stories. They are our earliest sciences, a kind of people-physics. Their logic is how we naturally think. They configure our biology, and how we feel, in ways long essential for our survival. Like our language instinct, a story drive—an inborn hunger for story hearing and […]

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In Defense of Happily Ever Afters

In a continuation of my defense of the Disney Princess, and along the lines of why classic fantasy (along with the classic sidekick), I thought I would address the importance of the “Happy Ending.” Many of you are well aware that classic fairy tales do not have a happy ending.  Grimm’s Fairy Tales come from […]

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Getting Ready for NANOWRIMO

I’ve written two complete novels (neither one published, btw) with NANOWRIMO.  I think it’s about the best idea to happen to writers since the invention of ebooks. Everyone has a story in them.  Some of them are a little more interesting than others, but the great thing about NANOWRIMO turning thousands of amateurs into dedicated […]

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Evolution of a Sidekick

Yesterday I found out an article I had written more than ten years ago (when I was still wet behind the ears trying to be a writer) had been used as source material for the Wikipedia entry on Sidekicks.  I got a good giggle out of being right next to a well known LA Times […]

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The Lost Art of Letter Writing

I love getting mail.  Well… I love getting letters and packages.  With the advent of personal communication technology like text messages and email, getting a letter or card is becoming more and more rare an event (making me even more excited when I get an actual letter).  But I still keep up the tradition of […]

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We Are All Sinners

Writers have definite rules.  We have Commandments, as I illustrated a few posts ago.  Unfortunately, we also have heretics, sinners, apostates (not to be confused with apostrophe’s) and zealots.  It is easy to become one of the aforementioned because not only are the commandments constantly changing–what edition are we on the Chicago Style?–they also contradict […]

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Why Sculptors are not Writers

After my long, tongue-in-cheek post on the Commandments of Writing, an event comes along that perfectly illustrates the importance of correctly using punctuation, or at the very least, using correct quotes (in context).  The case in point was the monument to Martin Luther King Jr. at the National Mall.  The plans had a quote from […]

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