Flowers of Fate

The boy ran up the lane, his thoughts filled with a sweet tension. What would she say? How did she feel about him? Did she know he loved her? His heart beat faster, and his hands were hot. The wind whipped around him, trees sighing like his heart as the leaves moved against each […]

La Pâtisserie

The scent of cinnamon and honey rolled in the breeze, and I followed the trail down the cobbled road. The pastry shop was small and old, but was well-kept and clean. As I entered, a small bell on the door chimed.

An old woman was rolling dough out on a stone slab, and I […]

Gone Before

The sun glinted off a small object, tumbling slowly end over end. Maxwell breathed slowly, smoothly, and pushed away from the airlock with his legs. He saw in his rear view video feed the ship receding quickly. A moment watching this, and Maxwell whispered, “Select Ranged Target 122798, cross-hair image superimpose, forward feed.” Now […]

On Alien Biology and 'Hard Sci-Fi'

Monster credit Piolinfax – Image on Wikimedia Commons

I’m making up stuff again. The squishy sort of stuff, things an autopsy, a scanning electron microscope, centrifuges and spectrometers might be involved with if these were real-world organisms.

Building a monster requires some science. It’s best done if you’ve studied a soupçon of biology, a […]

Welcome to Often Inspired!

“If the public likes you, you’re good.” — Mickey Spillane

 

Our signature motto is “Be true to your reader and the rest will follow.”

 

Have faith in your reader, but earn their trust first. Write something they would enjoy.

We hope you have a lot of fun here. Read. Critique. Create. Make […]

Blood and Guts and Brains

Photo: https://www.militarynewsnetwork.com/military-news/news1101.htm

Writing about those who stand in defense of their country is a challenge. If you’re close to your subject, if you’ve lived it, then you may have trouble stepping back to gain perspective. If you have never served, then you have to gain currency with terminology, basic tactical concepts, and may never […]

Camaraderie at the San Diego Writers Conference, alas.

Picture Credit: Wikimedia Commons User:Onomatomedia

This last January I had the privilege of attending the San Diego Writers Conference, held at the newly upgraded Doubletree Hotel in Mission Valley. The venue was beautiful, the machine of the Writers Conference hummed along flawlessly, and the very best parts were the people.

The camaraderie of writers […]

Lessons Learned: San Diego Writers Conference

Just one month ago I attended the 2012 San Diego Writers Conference. My objectives were to polish the pitch for my novel, and to learn what I had to do to get it published. What did I learn?

How to create a great query letter Build a synopsis of your novel Jumping over the […]

The Point

It was another pointless day at my community college. The usual agitators in my English 204 class had started a discussion which ranged far off its original course, and finally degenerated into an argument about that old cliche: If you knew a nuclear weapon was about to explode in a city in a few hours, […]

Watch Us Sweat

Remember these?

National Novel Writing Month (hereafter NaNoWriMo) is a yearly contest to write an entire novel in just 30 days – November – from scratch – you start writing on November 1st, and stop no later than midnight November 30th.

Yes, it’s insane. But it’s a way to stop procrastinating, and actually sit […]