Archive for March, 2012

I hear from the wonderful Neile Graham that acceptances have gone out to the Clarion West Class of 2012. This year’s instructor lineup looks amazing: Mary Rosenblum, Hiromi Goto, George R.R. Martin, Connie Willis, Kelly Link and Gavin Grant, and Chuck Palahniuk. This time last year, when I received my Class of 2011 acceptance, my heart was split between maniacal glee […]



I wanted to spread the word about a new philanthropic startup, GoneReading. I’m not sure about the phrase “reading lifestyle” 😀 but the idea is that you buy their literary swag, and they donate the profits. From their FAQ:  To fulfill our philanthropic mission, Gone Reading International donates 100% of its after-tax profit to fund new reading libraries […]

Most of my posts on SpecTechnique have been about stuff you can do in fiction & language. But today I’m going to talk, for a chance, about something to avoid. And after you read this post, I hope you’ll avoid it too. Or at least think about it! In high school, I was asked to read Jane […]

I recently read Dan Brown’s The Da Vinci Code for the lols and I thought I’d share some of its worst passages with you. Sophie looked equally intimidated as her eyes scanned the lobby. Does her face have 2 personalities? Pulling his driver’s cap down further, he effected as rough a facade as his cultured […]

The rules of timekeeping are supposed to be simple in fiction. Choose a tense when you start writing, and stick to that tense throughout — whether it’s past, present, or (god help us) future. Sometimes, though, cutting to the present tense in your past tense story can create some unusual & noteworthy effects.Today at SpecTechnique […]