Favorite Writing Rules To Break – Flashbacks

Writing rules – and our favorite ones to break – has been a topic that repeatedly comes up at Ferret Business Meetings when we’re just chattering. (Yes, we have business meetings! Those are what keeps this blog on track!) One of the more common sayings in the writing community is that you have to know the writing rules before you break them, so you know how and when to break them properly.

But sometimes writing ‘rules’ are really writing pet peeves, and so much of it is dependent on genre. (Note: we are not talking about grammar rules here. Those are necessary, and while they can be bent, most of them cannot be completely broken. Learn them. Know them. Become one with them.)

In the last few years in the writing world, especially those who write/read fantasy, I’ve heard a lot of negative comments about flashbacks. It took me a bit by surprise. Continue reading


Of Story Structure and Character Development – Writing Strengths and Weaknesses

Before I wrote this post, I actually sat down with Jessica and asked her for her opinion. This is because Jess is probably the one person on the planet who has read almost as much of my writing as I have.

Strength: Structure

Originally, I said that my strength would probably be dialogue. I enjoy writing it, and back in college, my teacher mentioned that my dialogue was consistently the best part of my stories.

But when I talked to Jess about it, she said, “Nope. Structure.”

And Jess is always right, so I listen to her.

If you ask me for my favorite book on the writing craft, I will say Scene & Structure by Jack Bickham. And if you say, “Structure? Really?” then I will most likely buy you the book myself and say READ IT.

Continue reading