When writing characters, remember to consider not only their personalities but their psychological development. Not every character has to fit a completely different temperament profile. It is possible to have two extroverted optimists in the same story and keep them unique by homing in on where they are in life: make Character A young, naive, and dreamy and make Character B wise, determined, and practical.

This would be a good exercise. Pick three or four personality descriptors and apply them to two characters. Focus on differentiating them based on how their age/culture/class/history has influenced their psychological development.




Ever wonder why are there so many genres of music but not of books? Basic business. The Book Industry Study Group has compiled a list of numbers called BISAC codes, which all published books must be filed under. This makes it easier to market, sell, and stock books based on these categories. And while BISAC codes are always expanding, it is still sad that literary art has to be so confined by the practicality of an old business model. Personally, I’d love to see what a book genre entitled “shimmer pop” or “chilltronica” read like.

You can check out the current BISAC list for Fiction here.


Good writers are good readers.

I never believed in this sentiment. I thought that any story worth telling would pour out of you, unhindered and unadulterated by the influence of others. Until now. Thanks to a fairly intense editing class, I have been force fed an abundance of short stories by American greats, analyzing them to death in quick succession and without time to pause for breath.

I have also started writing short stories, coming out of a year-long writers’ block by breaking into a format I had not seriously attempted before. Coincidence? I think not…


The imagination is highly underrated in the Real World. It’s all fun and dandy when you’re a kid – every cartoon you’d sit down to watch sings at you to explore your imagination. But once you grow up, imagination is checked at the door in favor of cold, hard reality. It is reduced to a “just“. It was just your imagination. You were just imagining. Except if someone is trying to get you to do something you don’t want to do. Then you get an annoyed, fervent: “Use your imagin-ation!”

This concept of being able to turn on, turn off, or regulate the imagination is wrong. The imagination is there, whether you like it or not. Stifled, gagged, but not dead. You can’t get rid of it – and why would you want to? Adults with bold, untamed imaginations shaped this precious thing you call your reality.


Story ideas from long ago come back like memories – colors, moods, landmarks, images that have not surfaced for years. I remember that river, that tower, that car trip and that old hotel. It feels like I’ve lived these ‘memories’; I miss those places, those people. Writers really do live multiple lives, even if they don’t realize it until later.


Mostly I think I write because I want to share all my crazy ideas and half-baked observations. The only way these will be taken seriously is if they are published in book form. Otherwise, I’ll simply be a very odd, talkative, annoying person.


I’ve had a new story idea on the back burner for a while now, waiting for the perfect moment to start writing. Now I’m moved into my new apartment, about to start my summer job, and ready to begin. I hope it is everything that I envision . . .