US sci-fi author and self-confessed fantasist geek E.E. Knight offers up a list of 20 pieces of advice to all budding genre writers (even if sci-fi/fantasy/horror isn’t your thing a lot of the advice is still very relevant!) on his blog site Bohemian Word Werks.

Here’s a few of our favourites:

2. Logorrhea: Having something between two and a dozen words pull the weight of one. I can’t tell you how often I read stuff like "Thinking back on her past, she remembered her childhood of twenty years ago, when as a six-year-old…"

3. The Joker: Smiling, and its evil cousin, the grin. I’ve read entire chapters where characters do nothing but smile and grin at each other, as though they’re living in the Treehouse of Horror Simpson’s vignette where Bart has mental powers like the kid in the Twilight Zone episode "It’s a Good Life" and everyone has to keep on a happy face.

14. Strange days. Stranger names: I get sf/fantasy stories about orc-tribes where there’s Bolk, Gurg, and Fred. Which would be funny, I suppose, if it wasn’t a straight-faced quest fantasy. A name from our time can carry lots of associations with it, so don’t go calling your dark elf capital city San Diego or putting your ranger hero in lederhosen.

Also, chances are they don’t celebrate Christmas on Planet Mongo.

For the complete list, follow this link

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