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“The serious fiction writer will think that any story that can be entirely explained by the adequate motivation of the characters or by a believable imitation of a way of life or by a proper theology, will not be a large enough story for him to occupy himself with. This…

When I was about fourteen years old, a friend at school who spent her summer vacations in South Hampton with her dad, called me up one night. This is not a scene I am proud of recalling. In fact, I hope one day to forget it, to erase it from…

Some writers worry that if they spend a lot of time pre-writing, outlining, and storyboarding that it will interfere with their creativity. You know, that spontaneous spark of genius that only comes if you let the words just flow. I beg to differ. Creativity is just as spontaneous when you…

No one who has read Ernest Hemingway’s first short stories or subsequent novels can suppose that the man had a death wish. Yet, it was all there, written between the lines, and sometimes not even that subtle. Quite a tragedy, really, a man so smart and gifted with the English language that…

“Under the blanket, Sophie waited.” I love the first line in Roald Dahl’s The BFG, now a major motion picture on the screen. I stared at that line, and as I always do, wondered where his idea for his novel originated. My curiosity was quickly satisfied as a I read the notes by…

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