Year-End Review

2016 was a terrible year overall. But though it feels wrong to say so, 2016 was actually pretty good for me, socially and professionally.  Especially in a terrible year like this one, sitting down in December and recording your successes is essential. We’re going to need the reminder to give us fuel for next year. … Continue reading Year-End Review

WTO Master Classes

Writing the Other: Master Classes are focused, live, online workshops of just a few hours–not a six-week commitment like the excellent workshop that I did–that go more deeply into specific topics. These include writing Native American characters, writing comics/graphic novels, writing asexual characters, writing deaf and blind characters, and other topics.

You keep using that word

“Does the science in science fiction have to be accurate?” That’s a question I’ve seen more than once. But beyond the (debatable) basics, what does “accurate” even mean in terms of science fiction? When I was a kid, an astronaut came to my elementary school. The thing I remember most vividly is his rundown of all the … Continue reading You keep using that word

The Kids These Days and The Novels: Hannah More and Novels as a Tool of Oppression

Hannah More, a well-known philanthropist and playwright, author of one novel and many Evangelical moral tracts, saw the growth of novel reading as a serious threat. More is actually a really interesting and complex character, so before we chuckle at her silly ideas, let’s learn more about her. More was a strong believer in education. … Continue reading The Kids These Days and The Novels: Hannah More and Novels as a Tool of Oppression

The Kids These Days and The Novels: Clara Reeve and the Circulating Library Menace

So far in The Kids These Days and The Novels, we’ve seen people complain that novels can cause earthquakes, that novels can be written by women, that novels can cause false taste in criticism and art, that novels are too much fun to possibly be good for you, and that there are so darned many … Continue reading The Kids These Days and The Novels: Clara Reeve and the Circulating Library Menace

The Kids These Days and The Novels: John Ruskin and the Case of Endangered Art

John Ruskin was a multi-talented artist, writer, drafter, and social thinker, as well as one of the top art critics of the Victorian age. He also had some goofy ideas about novels that, coincidentally, sound a lot like Coleridge’s. In his book The Elements of Drawing, Ruskin tries to teach his readers to develop their … Continue reading The Kids These Days and The Novels: John Ruskin and the Case of Endangered Art

Convention Anticipation

The first convention of the year for me is Gallifrey One in Los Angeles. It’s a Doctor Who convention, but it’s also kind of the Doctor Who convention, despite being a cozy, fan-run, American event. It’s not perfect, but it’s an amazing experience. Its superpower is the ability to make everyone, from guests to new fans, … Continue reading Convention Anticipation