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  • Writer's pictureGeoff H.

Inside the Cover

Updated: Feb 21, 2020

Inside the cover will be a series of periodic (meaning when I remember to write something) blogs looking at our writing process. Like going “Under the Hood” or “Behind the Scenes” I hope to show you how our writing process works, offer some useful tips that you can apply to your own writing, and give you a glimpse behind the magic curtain to see how the sausage is made. (Maybe I will do a blog on how to avoid mixing your metaphors? N’ah.)

Coy and I write as co-authors on our novels, but we are each also working on stand alone stories too. That means that our experience as authors may (probably) differs from yours. But that’s okay. One of the first lessons any writer should learn is that everybody writes differently. Sure, there’s following proper grammar, spelling, and punctuation. That’s the technical side of things. The writing process – creating a story, developing characters, gripping a reader’s emotions and not letting go – that is art and every writer does it differently. And that is a good thing. So, if somebody tells you that you are not writing “properly” or that you should be writing “this” way, my advice is to ignore that person. Write the way you want to write. Tell the story you want to tell.

Lesson two is that if you write your own way, not everybody will like it. And that’s okay, too. There are a lot of things you probably like that I don’t, and vice versa. But don’t get caught thinking that just because you want to be free and creative that your shit doesn’t smell. Opinions, feedback, constructive criticism (emphasis on constructive) are also important otherwise you will never improve. You need to be willing to listen when people (those who buy your book, people you asked to give an opinion on your work, professional and amateur reviewers, and other writers) give you feedback. I have found that listening to what others have to say about my own work has greatly improved my skills as an author. It doesn’t mean I know where every comma should go, or that I know when to stop adding “that” and “just” to my drafts, but I know that my skills at pacing, dialogue, plot and character development have improved. And they will continue to improve. Besides, listening to feedback doesn’t hurt (when done correctly) and is the polite thing to do.

I was never very good at writing essays in school. Beginning, body, conclusion. I tended to go on tangents – sort of like this blog entry. So, let’s get this thing back on track. Hopefully the tidbits of wisdom I drop in these Inside the Cover posts will give you a pit of insight into our creative process and our stories. And maybe I’ll learn how to write a better essay.

N’ah, that’s probably too much to ask for.

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