New Year reading resolutions

Russia’s in the news, the bogeyman (bogeycountry?) from my childhood, only then it was “Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall” from a president staunchly opposed to Russian policies and interference (not that he was a peach, either). So here at the beginning of 2019, and after thoroughly enjoying Katherine Arden’s Russian-set The Bear and the Nightingale, I […]

Book review: 3 grown-up fairytales

Just right for long, dark nights before the fire (real or electric), these three fairytales for adults kept me reading past my bedtime. Beautiful language, strange and mysterious happenings, and a sense of magic link The Bear and the Nightingale by Katherine Arden, Melmoth by Sarah Perry, and Damsel by Elana K. Arnold. But be […]

Book review: 3 sci-fi books for kids

Recently, Alban Lake Publishing sent me a trio of middle-grade sci-fi books to review. If your kids are looking for fun, quick reads–and you’re interested in supporting an independent press–check out Debby Yeo’s Meet the Mercusons and Tyree Campbell’s series, Pyra and the Tektites. Meet the Mercusons is a collection of short fiction, poems, and […]

Revising a revision strategy, part 2: Characters

This week, I’m interrogating my characters.   I finished examining my novel’s scenes last week. It was both dispiriting and energizing to find SO MANY areas for opportunity, but the exercise allowed me to sort where my novel as a whole is strong and where it needs more work–and how exactly I might improve it. […]

Revising a revision strategy, part 1: Scenes

I’m finally diving into revisions of the book I finished in May with a whole new revision strategy. That is, with a strategy at all. Usually I just start reworking everything all at once, from structure to punctuation, becoming pretty overwhelmed by my big mess. Well, early drafts are always a mess, but I’m feeling more in […]