By Debbie Ohi: https://www.flickr.com/photos/debbieohi/374968507/


I had a fairly uncomfortable realization today, and it got me thinking.

See, there are “issues” popping up in my books. Themes. Recognizable themes, corresponding directly to “issues” I happen to be going through on my own.

So does this happen to you? Do you see anything your characters struggle with that speaks to your growth, your pain, your joy?

Do you see anything your characters struggle with that speaks to your growth, your pain, your joy?

While you muse over that question, here are some useful links.

Some thoughts on racial diversity in fantasy, by author Cindy Pon. Some excellent advice on rewriting/editing by  author K. M. Weiland. A little note on stylistic repetition by agent Nathan Bransford. An absolutely awesome video  from agent Kristin Nelson condensing cover design to 2 minutes. So worth the watch. Author Maureen Johnson’s fascinating (and painful) read on how (not) to write an author, complete with bizarre sample. (Lemme tell ya, that librarian is going to HATE my book when it comes out. Whenever that happens.)

And last but not least, a fantastic and encouraging comic from Inkygirl. SOMEDAY,

By Debbie Ohi: https://www.flickr.com/photos/debbieohi/374968507/

Now you can answer that question. 😀 (Not to mention the corollary: is it necessary to have experienced some version of the things we put our characters through for it to be genuine? Fear, grief, betrayal, joy, love, etc.?)


A three-times bestselling author, Ruthanne Reid has led a convention panel on world-building, taught courses on plot and character development, and been the keynote speaker for the Write Practice Retreat. Author of two series with five books and fifty-plus short stories, Ruthanne has lived in her head since childhood, when she wrote her first story about a pony princess and a genocidal snake-kingdom and used up her mom’s red typewriter ribbon in the process. When she isn’t reading, writing, or reading about writing, Ruthanne enjoys old cartoons with her husband and two cats, and dreams of living on an island beach far, far away. P.S. Red is still her favorite color.