Author Archives: dan

Timeline for writing a novel

Here’s what I’m thinking. Spend too much time on writing a novel, and it becomes boring and dies. Spend too little, and it’s half-baked crap. Here’s what seems to be a good timeline for me. Month 0-3: Think about story. … Continue reading

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The Old History

This is a big one. Using future timeline, necrometrics, this handy graph, the BBC timelines of India,and China,a random number generator, and imagination, I put together a timeline for the world of Raj Station. Note that the establishment of stations (for a train … Continue reading

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Let your work rest

Here’s a stupid mistake I made with every damn novel I’ve written up to now. Here’s my old process: brainstorm>outline>first draft (with simultaneous alpha-readers)>second draft (with simultaneous beta-readers)>third draft (sent to agent)>Massive structural edits needed>cry. See what happened there? I like alpha-readers for … Continue reading

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If Linear B was the basis for the Roman Alphabet?

The Roman Syllabary, still often called the Traditional European Syllabary, is ultimately derived from Cretan glyphs, spread by the civilization of MiKeNa across the northern Mediterranean. The TiRiNi-ans simplified the syllabary for their own use, which the people of RoMa imported more or less … Continue reading

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Boredom and Xenophilia

About a month ago, I wrote something different from my usual flights of speculative fancy: a slice-of-life exercise describing my walk from the metro station in Sofia, Bulgaria. People really liked it. Or, rather, lots of people who know me commented … Continue reading

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Don’t love your job

The apparition glows a shade of violet that human eyes were never meant to see. It reaches out a skeletal hand, ice crystals shivering from the air as it glides closer to my face, screaming. Then it hits the tripwire and it … Continue reading

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Stupid stupid me

I accidentally deleted my tumblr account. Here’s the shattered remnants I’ve been able to scrape back together. It’ll be a while before it’s back to form, but it’ll get there. In the mean time, follow me?

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How Dinosaurs can Fix Your Religion

There comes a time in every spec-fic writer’s life when they must take a good long at themselves and think: “is this novel I’ve written nothing but a vehicle for my made-up culture?” You bet it is! I was working … Continue reading

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Giving characters a Mission

It was really easy to write the beginnings of Tyrannosaur Queen and World’s Other Side. Why then, was it so hard to write the beginnings of New Frontiers, Charming Lies, and Junction? Charming Lies’ beginning is STILL giving me hell … Continue reading

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How Dinosaurs can fix the Evolution of Flight

From Coral Moore’s Chaos and Insanity blog When I pitched my “How Dinosaurs can fix your…” series of essays to the good people of the Codex writers’ forum, I expected (and mostly got) requests for writerly advice such as “How … Continue reading

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