My next book is so new that even the title isn’t settled yet.
Watch what happens when he runs out of shampoo.
But my agent sent me a nice note about how well I pulled off the simmering romantic tension between the lead characters.
Considering that the point-of-view character is a smart young woman, and I’m a guy (in my case, smart and young are arguable), this was quite a compliment.
And it got me thinking:
How do authors write about characters of the opposite gender?
Just because it’s fuzzy doesn’t make it a cuddly pet.
Did you know that there’s a black market for stolen tarantulas?
Or that these spiders hibernate during the winter?
Can you imagine someone crazy enough to break into the dark, cobweb-choked crawlspace under a house and steal a bunch of giant spiders?
Yeah. My thoughts exactly.
Read the full article >
So, real life can be stranger than fiction. But still, I do my best to make fiction pretty freakin’ strange.
The Spider Thief: Omnibus paperback on Amazon >
If you want to write a book, why do it first thing in the morning?
Are you more creative early in the morning?
Studies show that not only are we more creative in the morning, we’re also more optimistic.
In other words, we’re happier.
Sure, misery and angst have inspired plenty of creative geniuses.
But personally, I’d rather be creative when I’m in a good mood.
What’s the secret to getting creative?
Where do New Year’s resolutions go to die? Mostly, Cinnabon.
This is the week that New Year’s resolutions die.
I didn’t just make that up, by the way. I read it in The Wall Street Journal.
Also, there was something in there about bonds or treasuries or whatever.
So much for my financial resolutions.
Look, your New Year’s resolutions are doomed. But there’s a better way.
Help me spread the word about Conspiracy of Angels. Share the official trailer, and you could win a paperback book autographed by yours truly.
Come on, it’s fun. And it couldn’t get any easier to win.
How do authors create an imaginary world from scratch? This weekend, I’ll offer writers some world-building tips at MileHiCon in Denver.
Can’t make it to the convention? No worries. Here are the answers to eleven of your burning world-building questions.
MileHiCon: How do authors go about building a world?
Don’t “zap” your story with world-building mistakes!
Laurence MacNaughton: Personally, I immerse myself in the strangest real-world research I can possibly find.
My novel The Spider Thief sprang from a real-life case of amnesia, a real lost city in the Amazon, a frighteningly real tarantula migration, and a scientific mystery about a real-life toxin that can steal your memories.
Truth is, of course, stranger than fiction. So the most interesting place to start a story is with the truth.
MHC: What are some mistakes other authors have made, and how do you avoid them?
Ever wanted to know how a science fiction or fantasy author builds an imaginary world?
How do authors create strange new worlds? Find out!
Authors like J.R.R. Tolkien, Stephanie Meyer, J.K. Rowling, Frank Herbert, William Gibson and scores of others are renowned for the worlds they’ve created.
What makes them so intriguing?
I’ve been invited to join a handful of other authors at MileHiCon here in Denver this month to talk about the reasons why (and how to do it).
What Is World Building?
Last Christmas, my trouble-making brother got me hooked on the new Pathfinder fantasy card game. (The best part: it’s cooperative. You and your friends work together to try to beat the deck. Plus, you can play the same character every game, gaining greater powers over the course of a long ongoing story arc. Really neat.)
I made this – and now I can take my Pathfinder Adventure Card Game to Starbucks with ease!
We play at Starbucks, and since the original cardboard box takes up way too much space on the table, I had to improvise. Originally, I packed the starter deck in a plastic recipe box and threw it in my backpack, so we could bike to the game.
100% fun. So what’s the problem?
The Game Keeps Growing
What? I can’t hear you. WHAT?
I know so many writers who claim that they need absolute silence in order to write. I used to be one of them.
As I write this, we’re having a hardwood floor refinished in the room directly above my office.
If you’ve never had a floor redone, I envy you. You probably still have your hearing.
It turns out that old hardwood boards are incredibly acoustic. And if you grind on them with two-ton industrial vacuum-equipped sanders, you get what is quite possibly one of the loudest sounds in the known universe.
It’s a noise so painfully loud, you can plug your ears and shout to the person next to you, and they don’t even know you’re there. A 747 could land on my front lawn, and I wouldn’t know.
Right now, there are probably people at NASA scratching their heads over the cosmic feedback spewing from these machines.