I have a colleague here in the English department at the university where I teach, and early on in my efforts at writing novels I passed several of my books in front of him. No more. One time, I passed the first chapter in front of him and then asked him what he thought of … More Does Your Story Have a Soul?
I was watching The Late Show with Stephen Colbert the other night when the actor Paul Dano was being interviewed. Stephen Colbert talked about how “intimate” his acting roles tend to be, and it got me thinking about writing (of course). Intimacy. Privacy. Vulnerability. It’s what we all resist sharing, and yet it’s what we … More The Yin and Yang of Storytelling
“By faith Abraham, when called to go to a place he would later receive as his inheritance, obeyed and went, even though he did not know where he was going.” –Hebrews 11: 8 (NIV) For those of you who have read my Great Adventure Manifesto elsewhere on this site, you know that I am venturing … More Promised Land
Two weeks ago, our University Communication Department took its students on their annual Communication Field Trip in the Dallas-Fort Worth area. This year, just for a change, we included two historical sites: the Sixth Floor Museum that commemorates the assassination of John F. Kennedy and his tenure as president, and the Holocaust Museum, which talks … More Who Do We Need More: Leaders or Heroes?
My father was a “jack of all trades and master of none.” He was really good at fixing things with his hands, but wasn’t really fantastic at anything. I guess that’s where I inherit my short attention span. Once again, time to be transparent. My latest book, Chosen, has tanked for all intents and purposes. … More Platform vs. Inspiration
You know how it goes with brilliant ideas. Sometimes there are…complications. I still think my concept of putting a low-cost e-book on the psychology of writing is a good idea. I think that the fact that I have been writing along those lines for five years in my blog is great. It’s even wonderful that … More A Complication with a Compilation
I am determined to be a part of NaNoWriMo this year. For those of you who don’t know, that’s National Novel Writing Month, where each November crazy people like me attempt to write a 50,000-word novel in 30 days. I’ve done it three times, and have three books to share because of it. But there … More Tom Horn Rides Again
When people ask what my doctoral dissertation was on, I hesitate to tell them. The problem is that most dissertations are so obscure and so complex that by the time you have explained it, the listener’s eyes have glazed over and you realize that they have heard little of what you have said and understood … More Demons and Vampires and Zombies…oh my!
I can’t help it. I’m a blabbermouth. When I am working on a writing project, I can’t hardly wait to finish a chapter before I print it off and start to share it. I corner my wife, harangue my students, bother my daughter, even pester you faithful blog readers just to know that someone, somewhere … More Feedback or Solitude? Another Dilemma for Writers
I am presently reading the book “Story” by Robert McKee. I’m reading it in preparation for a class on Dramatic Writing I will be teaching beginning next month. I will have to say that it is one of the best books on writing I have ever read–and I have read quite a few of them. … More Character vs. Characterization