When it comes to writing and research, some really useful tools are hiding in plain sight. Here's a list of my favorites.
The role of real events in fictional stories is an unavoidable aspect of an author's signature voice—and even the authors themselves don't know where the line between the two is drawn.
Tips on how film can help unblock, inspire, and add depth to your fiction.
Tips on how travel can inform your fiction.
Some thoughts on how and why we live through our stories and protagonists.
Given the limited amount of reading time in our lives, it's important not to waste time consuming material that won't help us progress and develop.
In order to write deep, layered, original fiction you MUST read broadly.
In: Harry Potter, LeVar Burton, List, New Yorker, PODCASTS, Reading Rainbow, Research, women authors
Make it your New Year's Resolution to find and read more books through the literary world's secret weapon: podcasts.
What is method writing, and how can it help breathe authenticity into your work?
There is a lot we, as authors, can learn by reading the Best Horror of the Year anthology.
Religion is a huge part of life. Here are a few reasons why you shouldn't ignore it in your fiction.
The story of a fifty-four year old’s debut novel. Twenty-plus years of writing, revising, letting it sit, then rewriting and re-revising some more.
A guide to writing realistic crime and horror fiction when your manuscript involves blood.
Research is important, but you don't want to become a researcher. Learn how to research as a writer instead of writing as a researcher.
A few ideas on how to tap into your inner darkness, as we approach Halloween.
Using The *Big* Words: Five Tips On Making Jargon And Tech Work For Your Writing, Rather Than Against It
By Mike Cooper
With his new heist novel "The Downside" on shelves now, Mike Cooper offers some tips on how to prevent tech-heavy prose from making your story screech to a halt.
In: Crime, Crime Fiction, detective, Forensics, Murder, Research, Research, suicide, Writing the Crime Scene
Writing a crime scene where a murder is made to look like a suicide? Here's a guide to doing your research and getting the forensic details right.
Some advice for writing young protagonists for Middle Grade, YA, and adult fiction.
In: Cormac McCarthy, Ernest Hemingway, homage, Inspiration, Research, Resources, Terror in a Texas Town, Weezer
A discussion of how writers take, steal and borrow content, and why.
Violence in fiction—when to use it, and when to avoid it.
Strange experiences, new situations, and faraway galaxies are all great, but sometimes looking inside yourself and revisiting your memories is the best thing you can do for your writing.
How to avoid writing purple prose.
Psychopathic kilers, depressed cops and neurotic detectives. Mental illness is a recurring staple of crime fiction. Here's a guide to doing your research and getting the details right.
Tips for writing compelling dust jacket copy that makes the back of your book sing.