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Why I Write

August 9th, 2016

Hey Fantasy Fans,

When I was launching my Patreon page last week, it occurred to me that it’s been a long time since I explained why I do this writing thing. Why do I spend thousand of hours, year after year, pecking away at this keyboard, inventing stories and characters and places out of my imagination? And why do I have the gall to let the results be published for all the world to see?

Maybe I’m ill.

I’m only half kidding. I’ve long said that all writers — all those compelled to write — must be schizophrenic. It’s a strange thing to invent with words, to wrap ideas and philosophies inside a narrative, to create conversations between imaginary characters as if they were real people. Yet I love it.

For my money, there are few pleasures in this world that compare with the bliss of getting lost in a good book. And the idea that I could contribute to the realm of literature, that I could give that experience to other people, blows my mind. It’s with equal parts hubris and humility that I set fingers to keys and try to create something that speaks to you. Because we all have shared experiences, shared emotions, shared dreams. Fiction is about exploring those samenessess to dive down into the heart of what it means to be human. That’s my playground.

So, for me, writing is not a hobby, or even a profession. It’s a calling. Even back when the only people reading my stories were myself and my wife, it was a compulsion. A drive to keep inventing, to keep improving, to become a better person with every word written.

And I’ll keep doing it for as long as I live. I may never be a “popular” author. I may never win any awards or be able to live off my sales. But I am and forever will be a writer.

Most Anticipated Fantasy Books of 2014

January 2nd, 2014

Wow! Check out No. 27 on this list of most anticipated fantasy books of 2014.

Beginning of the End

March 5th, 2010

Having just crossed the 100k word count in my work-in-progress, I’m finding the going easier than before. Why is that?

I always enjoy the start of a new novel. The blankness of the computer screen, the ideas jostling in my head—each wanting to be caught and pinned down first—these things inspire me to create something new. The pages blur past me. Before I know it, I’m wrapping up chapter five.

When I come up for air, I get a glimpse of the mountain of work towering over me, and it seems like too much. This is when a good support system is vital. My wife is always there to tell me how awesome I am (and, no, she doesn’t drink much. Go figure.). But one way or another, I dive back into it. This middle section is where rhythm comes into play. When I’m in the zone, the pages get cranked out and the book starts to gather its own momentum. When I’m not . . . well, it can be an uphill climb.

All this effort carries me into the final act. (Do any other authors think of their books in terms of acts?) This is where I find myself now, in that boiling cauldron where the storylines I laid down earlier are all coming together. At this point, the words flow so easily it’s like I’m not in control anymore, but just holding on with both hands and hoping I don’t get thrown off before the ride comes to a halt. This is the second funnest (yes, I know it’s not a word. Get over it.) time in the writing process for me. The grand charge to the finish line.

*Cue Chariots of Fire theme song.*

  • News

    Hey, I’m on Patreon.

    Hey everyone.   As you might have seen from my social media posts, I’ve made a page on Patreon. It’s a service that allows people to pledge money to their favorite artists (those of us who don’t yet make a living wage through our art). I think of it as an investment into my future. […]

    STORM AND STEEL is Born!

    Today the second volume of my Book of the Black Earth series was officially launched. I hope you’ll check out Storm and Steel when you have the chance.

    Storm and Steel (ARC) giveaway

    You can enter to win a free ARC of STORM AND STEEL on Goodreads. Ends 5/11.

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