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The Nightmare After Christmas

I really hate dream sequences.

I can count on one thumb the amount of dream sequences I’ve seen or read in any story that I’ve truly enjoyed and felt like they added something to the story. They’re usually only there as a cheap attempt to make a clever point or as a lame excuse to make the protagonist do something he otherwise would never do. At their worst extreme, they are the primordial slime of deus ex machina. Yes, I know I always say that it is a matter of personal taste what we like and if dream sequences are your thing then… well, I suppose I just have to accept that. But I hate them.

That is what ruined this year’s New Year Special of the BBC drama, Sherlock for me.

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The Essential Voice of Red

Narrative voice is always important in fiction but especially in Rita Hayworth and Shawshank Redemption…. It is this, the narrative voice in the book, that makes this role so right for Morgan Freeman.

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Learning From Rejection

The reason I have decided to post just one more of my own stories this year is because it’s nearly Christmas and this story does have a bit of a Christmas theme going on in it. However, rather than just giving you the story to read and expecting you to like it, I’m going use this story as an example of how writers can (and should) use their rejected stories to help them develop as writers, by analysing their own work to see how they might improve upon it.

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5 Simple Brain Unblockers

I won’t lie to you; this post is pretty much the result of an afternoon spent swimming in the ocean of writer’s block, clinging on to the driftwood of terrible ideas. There are millions of different websites and books out there offering various suggestions on how to beat writer’s block and I’ve concluded that there is simply no ‘one size fits all’ method of getting back into the groove but here are a few techniques that I find myself employing on a regular basis.

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Auditioning Characters

Characters really matter. No matter what kind of fiction you’re writing, characters really, really matter… so it’s worthwhile spending a bit of time refining your characters. I like to do this by ‘auditioning’ characters…

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Throwback Thursday: The Perfect Antagonist

The antagonist – what we might loosely call ‘the bad guy’ – can make or break an otherwise good story. He is the living and breathing incarnation of the obstacle your protagonist (or ‘hero’, if you insist) needs to overcome.

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Monday Motivation

Do or do not. There is no ‘try.’

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10 Quotes About Writing

‘There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you.’
– Maya Angelou

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Monday Motivation

I went for years not finishing anything. Because, of course, when you finish something you can be judged.

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7 Deadly Writing Sins

There remain some lines we should simply never cross; some crimes we can commit as authors which are just unforgivable. And so, I’ve listed a few of them here for your enjoyment and instruction.

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