On the Horseshoe Theory of Plotting vs. Pantsing

It’s one of the first questions writers ask each other upon meeting for the first time:

Are you a plotter…

(outliner)

(architect)

…or a pantser

(discovery writer)

(gardener)?

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How to Keep Creating While the World is Going to Shit

It can feel a bit like fiddling while Rome burns.

The world at large has always been a tumultuous place, particularly with the advent of new online media entities, social media, and the 24-hour news cycle of network news making us more aware than at any other time in history of the shit going down across the globe.

Lately, however, it seems it’s not just greater access to the news that’s making the world seem so untenable, but rather the quality of the news as well.

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More Adventures in Method Writing (or, About That Time I Fell Off My Bike Due to Black Ice)

thermometer

My right knee was covered in road rash.  My left thigh is still sporting a huge, multi-hued bruise.

(When a bruise actually shows up on a black person, you know it must be bad.)

Anyone who’s read my blog for while knows that I ride my bicycle a lot.

I’m a cycle-commuter – I ride 8km roundtrip to work every day, as well as on various errands and social outings in and around Vancouver, where I live.  With the proper outer layers, Vancouver weather is rideable 95% of the year.

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How to Withstand January (and the Rest of a Miserable Winter)

winter-snowJanuary, I’ve heard said, is the most depressing month of the year.

(For many, February isn’t much better.  And this January in particular brings its own unique brand of wretchedness for many.)

This despite the fact that, with the holiday season and hence the longest night now in the past, not only is a new year upon us but so too are the daylight hours progressively getting longer.

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My Deserted Island Albums for Leaving 2016 Behind

deserted-island

Some dayssome years – retreating to a deserted island sounds like a mighty fine proposition.

Of course, it would have to be a tropical island.  Being one of those people who is always cold, spending a year on an island in the Arctic – or worse, the Antarctic – would create a whole new set of problems.

I’ve been snow camping before during my great outdoorsy days, but never in -34°C (-29°F).

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My Novel-in-Progress Needed a Soundtrack.  Yours May Too.

music-books

To be honest, it initially struck me as absurd, the thought of creating a soundtrack for a novel, let alone my own novel-in-progress.

After all, a book is, well, a book.  It is static and non-visual beyond the fact of seeing a print or e-book’s typewritten words.

To me, it made little sense trying to apply techniques used in visual arts (most notably motion pictures) to a format that most definitely isn’t a picture (this despite the fact that very good books can indeed succeed in creating vivid pictures in the reader’s mind).

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A New Answer to the Big Question

The Helix Nebula, nicknamed the Eye of God

The Helix Nebula, nicknamed the “Eye of God”

Years ago, I blogged about a common big question that often arises in writing.

Namely, the question of when you can properly call yourself a writer.

At the time, I’d just found “The Answer to the Big Question” in my house.  This was a list explaining the various circumstances that make one a writer that I’d printed from the internet years earlier when I too was uncertain on this matter.

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