Authors In Our Midst and Writers Chatting

In our continuing series featuring Balloon-Juice author’s latest books. Dorothy Winsor has a new book out this week. I’ll let her take it from here.

Stuck in a city far from home, street kid Doniver fakes telling fortunes so he can earn a few coins to feed himself and his friends. Then the divine Powers smile on him when he accidentally delivers a true prediction for the prince.

Concerned about rumors of treason, the prince demands that Doniver use his “magic” to prevent harm from coming to the king, and so Doniver is taken–dragged?–into the castle to be the royal fortune teller.

Now Doniver must decide where the boundaries of honor lie, as he struggles to work convincing magic, fend off whoever is trying to shut him up, and stop an assassin, assuming he can even figure out who the would-be assassin is. All he wants is to survive long enough to go home to the Uplands, but it’s starting to look as if that might be too much to ask.

Here’s the tl:dr version: Street kid Doniver accidentally tells a true fortune for the prince and is taken into the castle to be the royal fortune teller. Good new? Food and a warm bed. Bad news? He can’t tell fortunes.

I’ve said on BJ before that I got the idea for this book from the old TV show “Psych.” If you recall, that’s about a fake psychic who gets involved in solving crimes. Because I write fantasy, it occurred to me I could twist that into a fake magician responsible for stopping an assassination plot.


TaMara suggested I include something about my experience writing this book, so I went back and looked at my files and was shocked to see a complete draft from 2008. Yes, that’s right. Ten years ago. I am so slow. Not to generate words, mind you. I can do that. It’s generating insights into my characters, their situations, and whatever I want to say about the human heart that takes me forever. I am super slow about that. Now the parts of the book I like best are the ones I wrote late in the process. That early draft was competent but flat. I hope this one is at least less so!

I’m happy to talk about the book, publishing, and anything else, even Trump. This is BJ after all.

Oh, hell no on Trump. This is a politics-free thread, unless it is what you are writing about.  I thought we’d try a later time since I had a few requests for that. Let me know if it works for you guys.

So let’s chat. What are you writing these days? How’s your process? Any questions for Dorothy? Hit the comments.

74 replies
  1. 1
    JPL says:

    What a wonderful accomplishment, not matter how long you have been working on it.

  2. 2

    @JPL: Thanks. It’s hard for me to say how long it takes me because I write what I think is the final draft of a book, then send it to a few presses, while I work on something else. Then maybe no one bites and I have some distance and maybe have learned some things and I revise again. For me, it’s just slow.

  3. 3
    WereBear says:

    What an interesting premise!

    I love playing with layers of artifice.

  4. 4
    Bud says:

    Cool thread. I’ve seen this writing posts on BJ for a while, and even though I’m a long-time reader, I rarely post. This description of The Wind Reader is intriguing, and it looks like a great read. And I’m not surprised at all by a 10-year writing project. I have a few of those myself, so congrats for seeing it to completion.

    What’s the setting for this book? Time, place, etc. Sounds like a super fun plot with an enormous amount to explore. I’ll have to put it on my list.

    I’m finishing up my new novel Accidental Prophet, scheduled for publication by Bold Strokes Books on June 1, 2019.

  5. 5

    @WereBear: There used to be an agent blog written by Miss Snark. She talked about layers in a book. You need more than one thing happening, for one thing. As the movie people say, when the scene is about what the scene is about, you’re in trouble.

    I particularly like an unreliable narrator thought I’ve never written one. I love Megan Whalen Turner’s THE THIEF.

  6. 6

    @Bud: The book is a fantasy, so I made up the world. It’s what they call “traditional,” ie quasi medieval. I like that kind of setting because it allows for a wide range of dangers.

  7. 7

    @Bud: Tell us about Accidental Prophet.

  8. 8
    NotMax says:

    @Dorothy A. Winsor


    One might describe that as a moatif.


  9. 9
    Bud says:

    @Dorothy A. Winsor: I see…so a Game of Thrones sort of world? I certainly understand the appeal of that genre and as you said, it allows for some incredible dangers! Are you super jazzed to have it out for public consumption? Again, congratulations because I know how tough that slog can be at times!

    Thanks for asking about Accidental Prophet. It’s sort of a sci-fi/thriller/mm romance. I’m nearly done (deadline is Dec. 1) and I’m moving some scenes around and polishing the rough patches. @WereBear makes an excellent point about layering the scenes and that’s what I’m trying to do.

  10. 10
    Mnemosyne says:

    Congratulations! Hearing that you had an old draft of it makes me feel a little better, because the book I’ve been struggling with for the last couple of years is a page 1 re-write of something I started close to 20 years ago.

    I feel like my issue is that I have no deadlines, so I have zero motivation to work on it consistently. I’ve tried to form a daily writing habit without a lot of luck, and I can’t seem to find a consistent critique group or critique partner that would help impose an outside deadline.

  11. 11

    @Bud: Dec. 1 is close! Moving things is a pain. I moved the location of one of the big events in The Wind Reader and it drove me crazy because I had to unpick all the little stitches I’d used to show people getting someplace and why they went there and blah, and then redo them. They needed reasons to go here rather then there.

    @NotMax: Ow.

  12. 12

    Let me know how this time works for everyone. We have another author coming up mid-Oct.

    And a little self-promotion. I’ve been writing little short photo stories on instagram to keep the juices flowing. I’ll take as many followers as I can get. :-)


  13. 13

    @Mnemosyne: You work full time. That makes it hard.

    When I was working, I used to get up around 5:30 and be at Panera soon after they opened at 6. I’d eat breakfast, drink coffee, and write until I had to leave for my office around 7:45. That was it on working days. I was too tired at night. But the pages added up after a while. I was an academic so I had breaks too. If you’re working long hours, it’s brutal to try to write too.

  14. 14
    Mnemosyne says:


    When I was at the RWA (Romance Writers of America) conference in Denver, a couple of editors from Sourcebooks did an interesting presentation on Amanda Bouchet’s breakout debut A Promise of Fire and the market research they did to show that it was better for them to position it in the romance market rather than the fantasy market. (Short version: sales of fantasy novels for adults tend to group around a few well-known authors, while romance readers tend to me more open to new authors.) That may be something to keep in mind while you try to market your book, particularly since m/m romances sell pretty well these days.

  15. 15
    JoyceH says:

    Wind Reader looks intriguing! I bought it.

    Anyone else struggling to write in our current political environment? I sometimes feel like I’m trying to write a cute, funny little story while living in Westeros.

  16. 16

    I finally finished the first draft of a short story I started in *checks Time Machine* well, I guess it was only June, but it felt longer. I ended up doing way more worldbuilding than I expected. (It’s a classic fantasy setting, which is unusual for me.) It’s called A Brief Pause Between Floods.

    It’s set in a metropolis of 100,000 people that’s built on top of a giant stone foundation, and located at the delta of all the rivers for half a continent’s watersheds. During the season of floods, which is most of the year, the rivers rise up and it’s the last port before the ocean. The story is set during the tail end of the dry season. The city is mostly empty, just maintenance crews. A young woman, a builder’s apprentice, leads a group of visitors up the foundation for an overnight trip—something they offer weekly to tourists and for official outsider business. But her group contains a couple who is not what they claim, and things are complicated further by the presence of a Harvester—a masked monk from a sect that dedicates their lives to collecting the artifacts of the recently deceased in time for their burial. He must enter the city before the end of the season. But a fierce storm blows in that night…

    I may have accidentally started a novel, essentially.

  17. 17
    Bud says:

    @Dorothy A. Winsor: Yep, those changes can really trip you up! Do you write alone or with a group? I’m in two groups and can’t imagine going through this process on my own.

  18. 18

    @TaMara (HFG): Done. Fun ultra-short stories!

    I got a new phone this week partly because my old one was so primitive I couldn’t use it with Instagram. I need to get on it. An editor from Sourcebooks spoke to my writers group here and he said ya writers in particular should be on Instagram and Snapchat.

  19. 19

    And congrats, DAW (and Bud)!

  20. 20
    Bud says:

    @Mnemosyne: Thanks for the tip. My last novel was a mystery that was marketed as a mm romance. My publisher (Bold Strokes Books) said it would sell better. I had some awesome reviews from mm romance sites, but most mentioned they found the cover a little misleading. Fortunately, they found the story enjoyable and didn’t complain bitterly, but I’m not sure about my new one. I don’t want a romance cover like my last one, since there’s an intense but brief mm love story but in no way can it be called a romance. I’ve been going along with BSB’s marketing insight, but I’m sort of torn on this one.

  21. 21

    @JoyceH: Yay for a sale! My small press has been very decent to me. I don’t want them to lose money on me.

    The writers I know still seem to be producing something but what’s really been disrupted is reading fiction for pleasure. They’re riveted to the stories in the news that are so outrageous.

  22. 22

    Congratulations, Dorothy!

    I mentioned here a few months ago that I had sold a fantasy short story. It is now free to read online at the magazine website, here. I hope one day to be like Dorothy and get one of my novels published.

  23. 23
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Dorothy A. Winsor:

    I’m actually really lucky because I have a steady 9-6 job with a short commute, so I could be writing after work. I’m just not doing it. 😢 I am never going to be able to do an early morning writing routine, because I’m just not functional before 9 am. I mean, to the point where my boss at the day job prefers me to stay late rather than come in early of I need to make up hours because I’m a zombie until 9.

    I know that I need to get back to having a morning ritual, because that helps keep me on track. I used to do morning pages (à la Julia Cameron), but after a while they didn’t seem to be getting me much further. I’ve been looking at Miracle Morning and a similar habit where you combine free writing, affirmations, and visualization, but I haven’t started that yet because I have early morning PT for my knee. Sigh.

  24. 24

    @Dorothy A. Winsor: I’ve sort of gone the opposite route. I’ve read a lot of books this year and started doing slush reading for an SFF mag. Very good for my writing and helps keep me sane!

  25. 25

    @Dorothy A. Winsor: Thanks. Phone upgrade is on my wishlist – if I’m going to be doing a lot of these, I want a larger screen. As for instagram, one of my nieces follows me and if that was the only follower I had, that would make it all worth it.

  26. 26
    Bud says:

    @JoyceH: I know exactly what you mean. About a month ago, Sarah Kendzior said “It is only in our darkest imagination that we can begin to see the light.” I took that as inspiration because my new novel can be very dark at times.

    It’s a very strange time to write about anything but what is on all of our minds.

  27. 27

    @Bud: I certainly write alone. I belong to an online group of writers who’ve known one another for a long time and that’s where I go for emotional support about writing. It’s locked so we can grouse about editors, agents, presses, etc with some privacy. I also belong to a writers workshop right now, though I don’t always because they’re not always available. I learn a lot from the crits they give to other writers as well as to me. In some ways it’s easier to see the contribution a change will make in someone else’s work.

    @Major Major Major Major: That sounds rich with possibilities. When are you moving? I ask because I did find moving to be very disruptive.

  28. 28
    Mnemosyne says:


    The main thing you need to be able to call your book a romance is an optimistic ending — the readers need to feel like the couple has a future together at the end of the book. If you need to have one of the leads die or split the couple up to tell your story, you’re not going to be able to market it as a romance.

    BTW, this is why Nicholas Sparks does NOT call himself a romance writer or market his books that way. He wants to be able to kill his leads off at the end if needed, and romance readers will not stand for that.

  29. 29

    @Major Major Major Major: Reading slush is very revealing, isn’t it? Are you allowed to say for which magazine?

  30. 30
    Bud says:

    @Dorothy A. Winsor: I agree wholeheartedly. I make some elementary mistakes at times and I can count on my groups to get me back in shape. And I gain a lot from critiques of other writers as well.

    Thanks for the pleasant diversion, everyone. I have to get back to my novel now! Cheers, and congrats again Dorothy!

  31. 31
    Bud says:

    @Mnemosyne: Yikes…I don’t want to reveal why you made me gasp, but you did! Great advice. Super cool thread.

  32. 32
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Major Major Major Major:

    Writing a series of connected short stories that all take place in the same world is a totally valid way to write a novel, FWIW.

  33. 33

    @Dorothy A. Winsor: thanks. The more I wrote the backstory (I have like 35 pages of cut exposition lol), the more I realized I should do the story and then revisit it for a novel in the future. The nice thing about fantasy is that it’s not going anywhere!

    Moving in a month. I’m fortunate in that I’ve been doing my writing during my train commute for the last two years, so I’m accustomed to weird writing environments. Once we’re all set up in the sublet (mid November), I’ll have to figure out a new routine since I’ll be walking(!) to work.

    @Dorothy A. Winsor: I would prefer not to.

  34. 34

    @Major Major Major Major: Yeah, people trust you with their story. It’s better to be cautious.

    Writing during a train commute seems like a good idea. You can’t do much else, and you can work off of pavlovian conditioning if nothing else.

  35. 35

    I forgot to mention that the story is also set right as the big empire on that part of the continent has fallen into chaos because the king was assassinated. It’s not a metaphor for the narrator (young woman)’s impending adulthood, but it can be read that way.

    Should be a fun novel to work on!

  36. 36
    JoyceH says:

    Just FYI, if you folks know Regency fans who are still eschewing ebooks, I have four of my Regencies available in paperback now. (All of them but the novella.)

    Here’s the Feather paperback – A Feather To Fly With

    I have no idea how to market paperbacks, but thought there were still plenty of people out there who won’t read ebooks, so why not, right?

  37. 37

    @JoyceH: The Sourcebooks editor said something like only 20% of book sales are digital. Now that’s across all genres, of course, including things like cookbooks and other how-to. It was much higher among romance readers.


  38. 38
    WereBear says:

    @Dorothy A. Winsor: how interetting.

    Working on my paperback version this weekend.

  39. 39
    Orange is the New Red says:

    Just bought The Wind Reader, the story sounds really interesting and I’m a former middle/high school teacher. I’m a daily lurker, have posted so few comments that I can’t remember what name I used the last time I posted. Thank you to our writers!

  40. 40

    @WereBear: When people buy books they want to consult, they apparently like non-digital. I can see that. It’s easier to thumb through.

  41. 41
  42. 42

    DOROTHY! Many hugs to you and CONGRATULATIONS!

    P.S. anyone NaNo writing this November?

  43. 43
  44. 44
    Daniel Price says:

    Excruciverbiage II: CruciFix is my second collection of cryptic crosswords, available from Blue Agama Books via Amazon. [The first volume is also available from the same publisher and source.

    Solvers of cryptics present a small, specialized market–at least in the United States–and marketing has never been a strength of ours; we are therefore open to suggestions in that regard. [Mrs. Price is responsible for collections’ titles and cover art.] Each puzzle is themed, with many of them categorized as “variety” puzzles requiring special manipulation of entries and clues. The goal is to create challenging, entertaining puzzles that can be solved even when themes are not apparent. Fairness to the solver is paramount.

    We appreciate the opportunity to mention the books: not trying to convert the masses, just hoping to reach those interested. Field reports suggest that collections of cryptics are increasingly difficult to obtain, with mass-market publishers not interested and many older titles listed as “out of print”. A local (Boulder, Colorado area) reseller has a few copies of both Excruciverbiage titles on consignment; it is nice to see them on the shelf. Mrs. Price does not understand the appeal, but must believe it keeps me out of trouble and is nudging me in direction of volume three.

  45. 45
    opiejeanne says:

    @Mnemosyne: I hope I’m not too late to the party. What’s an m/m?

  46. 46
    WereBear says:

    @Daniel Price: Is it the kind of thing can can be done on social media! Offer small ones for followers?

  47. 47
    WereBear says:

    @Dorothy A. Winsor: Yes, i had heard fiction works digitally better.

  48. 48
    opiejeanne says:

    @JoyceH: I have a pretty good discipline about writing now, but I’ve been on the road for nearly two weeks and I’ve been too busy. Normally I go out to the shed and set up the computer and read the last chapter to get into the mood, maybe notice a discrepancy that I go ahead and fix, and then get out my notes to see where I am with regard to the plot and focus on where my characters are going.
    My working title is Levi’s Daughter, about a girl who is 9 in 1859, in the Missouri Ozarks. It’s a historical novel based on family stories, Civil War diaries from the area, battles fought in their neighborhood, and more.
    I started by setting the rhythm of her family’s life through the seasons, what goes on in a typical week, the goings on in a couple of churches (The Free Will Baptists, The Foot Washing Baptists aka Primitive Baptists, and a tiny bit about the Methodists) and how the Civil War comes to them.
    The daughter, Susannah (pronounced Susanner because Missouri Ozarks) is introduced in a similar manner to the way we meet Tiffany Aching in Terry Pratchett’s Wee Free Men. I used that not so much as a template but I thought about Tiffany and how she reacted in a slightly similar situation and used that as a jumping off point. I started by her observation of the environment where she’s standing, knee-deep in the Little Niangua in late August, the trees, the birdsong, animals in the woods, etc.

    One huge boost to my story came when someone on Balloon Juice mentioned the Carrington Event and when I looked it up it started about two weeks after the beginning of my book. So, whoever that was, THANK YOU! That’s the second chapter and sets up a chunk of the story that I didn’t know I was going to write, and it’s pretty good. I was going to ignore the churches, but when I read about that solar event I knew I had to include them, and it gave me a chance to show who most of the characters in the book (a cast of thousands, heh) are, to show their character.
    I may not ever finish this book, or it’s going to be massive unless I cut out a lot. I fell down a rabbit hole earlier this month when I found a Doctoral thesis about the massive Confederate frauds against the banks in Missouri. It was a big effing deal, and no one else has written much about it despite the fact that it’s unique among the other banking problems in the north created by the Civil War. That gave me a way to deal with the “golden family” who need to have some trouble in their lives to make the story work.
    Oh, I talked too much. Or rather I wrote about my writing too much.

  49. 49
    opiejeanne says:

    @Major Major Major Major: Ok you, I want to read that one when you get enough of it written.

  50. 50
    Daniel Price says:

    @WereBear: I offered the new set gratis to early buyers of the first volume. Volume the second has a “prize puzzle” that rewards solution with another cryptic. I have sent some examples directly to those showing the faintest interest (likely most of them were just being kind); perhaps I should hoist a puzzle or two on social media as “loss leaders”. [We were on a cruise ship in the North Sea this summer. I had not thought to market puzzles there, but the cruise line had daily “normal” crosswords available so I managed to print and distribute some without irritating the cruise line. No idea if the exposure led to more, but this exercise has never been intended to allow early retirement–just want to make puzzles for other people to enjoy.

    Thanks, WereBear!

  51. 51
    Steve in the ATL says:

    @opiejeanne: google it!

    Nah, better not.

    @Dorothy A. Winsor: absolutely.

    @Dorothy A. Winsor: I read A LOT. Two to four novels a week, depending on the length of my flights and my work days. Read a physical book last week and it was terribly difficult. Heavy, required light, couldn’t enlarge the font…digital is infinitely easier to deal with.

    Steve in the AIR

  52. 52
    R-Jud says:

    Hooray for fellow kids’ fantasy writers!

    The biggest boon to my writing lately has been starting up blogging again (link’s in my nym). There’s also a page where you can read a few samples of my longform creative writing.

  53. 53
    FelonyGovt says:

    @Daniel Price: Stupid question- what’s a cryptic crossword? I like puzzles and crosswords but I’m not familiar with that term.

    I have a jumble of possible writing fragments but no idea where to go with them. Hoping for a bolt of inspiration. My creativity seems to come and go and it’s been MIA lately.

  54. 54
    zhena gogolia says:


    They’re the type of crossword you get in British publications, where the clues are hard to figure out — they’re puns or anagrams or some other gimmick. They’re a lot of fun once you get the hang of them, but I can only do American ones. The British ones are too hard. They’re the kind Inspector Morse did.

  55. 55
    zhena gogolia says:

    @Daniel Price:

    I ordered one out of BJ solidarity, but they look brutal!

  56. 56
    opiejeanne says:

    @Dorothy A. Winsor: I discovered that cookbooks don’t work well for me on an eBook. I need to have some sort of book that won’t go dark on me while I’m stirring a pot.
    However, I do love having novels and short stories on an e-book. They don’t take up shelf space and I don’t have to worry about clearing them out of the shelves when I know I won’t want to read them again. Certain books I like having the hardbound version, but those authors are very few.

  57. 57
    opiejeanne says:

    @Dorothy A. Winsor: Tomorrow is payday, so I get to buy your new book! Yay!

  58. 58
    opiejeanne says:

    @PaulWartenberg: Probably me. I don’t need to write that many words to finish this book, I sincerely hope that, but that pressure drove me to get into the groove of writing almost every day. I did write every day last time.

  59. 59
    opiejeanne says:

    @Steve in the ATL: I did. It’s good to know. I felt like a dummy that I didn’t know that.

  60. 60
    FelonyGovt says:

    @Dorothy A. Winsor: Just bought your new book! I look forward to reading it.

  61. 61
    Daniel Price says:

    @FelonyGovt: Cryptics are sometimes termed “British-style” crosswords; clues are riddles, designed to make sense as sentences or phrases, but also designed to encode the entry. The clues must divide into two parts, one part being the true definition of the entry and the other describing wordplay representing that entry. The two parts can appear in either order.

    An example might be “Discharge never brought up according to schedule”; indicator words “brought up” suggest reversal of words to be necessary. In that example, the words to be “brought up” (reversed) are synonyms of “discharge” and “never”–in this instance, “emit” and “no”–which, after reversal, produce “on-time”, which means “according to schedule”.

    Most guides describe between eight and ten types of clues (anagrams, reversals, containers). The setter’s task is to create clues that misdirect, but there are fairly strict rules regarding their construction, summarized by famous British puzzle-setter Afrit: “I need not mean what I say, but I must say what I mean.” Of course, setters can elect to skate right up to the line separating fair from unfair.

  62. 62

    @opiejeanne: @FelonyGovt: BJ rocks.

    @opiejeanne: I’m too messy when I cook to have an e-reader anywhere near it. A cookbook needs to be on glossy paper that can be wiped off.

  63. 63
    Daniel Price says:

    @zhena gogolia: You are most kind.

    I hope that the puzzles are not truly “brutal”. I have found (as a solver for many years before diving into construction) that I had to adjust my approach to solving for different setters’ styles, even though I could not clearly state and differences between one setter’s clue-writing and another’s. Some familiarity–somehow–helped with attacking the same setter’s grids in the future.

  64. 64
    tokyocali (formerly tokyo expat) says:

    Congrats, Dorothy! I really like the cover. It’s very appealing. I’ll have to see about getting a copy for our mini-student library.

    I had good news last week. I had sent my first romantic suspense Killer Secrets out to a review site. All three reviewers gave it 5 stars. It really made my day. I haven’t been very good about putting my work out there and promoting myself. I need to get over that.

    I do a lot of my writing on the weekends. It’s hard to write after a full day at work and then coming home to take care of the family. I admire writers with discipline!

    So how many people are plotters and how many panst their stories? I really would like to be better at plotting.

  65. 65
  66. 66
    debbie says:

    @zhena gogolia:

    I used to do the Sunday London Times cryptics. Boy, they could tie you in pretzels!

  67. 67
  68. 68
    opiejeanne says:

    @debbie: I’ve never had the patience to work on one single clue for more than a half hour.

  69. 69
    Bud says:

    @opiejeanne: male to male romance

  70. 70
    Original Lee says:

    Congratulations! Not only have I bought Wind Reader, but I also have put your two “writing for engineers” books on my wishlist for when I get around to buying Christmas presents. A certain young engineer I know will certainly benefit!

    I’m sort of working on three books now, that I think ultimately will be YA but might end up being for the next higher age category – I think it’s called New Adult. One is set in a post-apocalyptic U.S. where the survivors and their descendants live in company towns based on available natural resources or groups of people with certain skill sets, because only companies have enough money to clean up an area and supply it with uncontaminated life support. The second is more of a space opera. The third is fantasy but in a contemporary setting. I started each of them as a NaNoWriMo text, but I used up my original idea energy in November and didn’t know where to go with the plot afterwards.

    The post-apocalyptic one is the farthest along, but I’m at a point where I have to decide how to proceed with the relationship between the two main characters, and I’m dithering. I think I want the novel to end with an emotional commitment, or at least have that near the end, but I could also keep the tension going with the intent of writing a sequel that includes a wedding.

    The space opera one has some really great dialog that I wrote after binge-reading John Scalzi, but I need to flesh out the plot significantly, since I basically have two or three plot points and “a miracle occurs” for the rest.

    The fantasy one is still in character development. I don’t want to have too many main characters, but I get struck with backstory ideas and suddenly I have another character.

    I’m not a very disciplined writer at all, I’m afraid.

  71. 71
    opiejeanne says:

    @Bud: Yes. I googled it.

  72. 72
    Susanna says:

    Already like your book, Dorothy, as the description relates an intriguing, inventive scenario. It piqued my curiosity.
    Congratulations on your accomplishment, from another CA lurker

  73. 73

    @Original Lee: I hope you enjoy The Wind Reader. But you might not want to impose the engineering books on someone you love! And it sounds like while you may not be a disciplined writer, you enjoy it which is what matters. Very few writers get much of an external reward. But no one can take away the joy of seeing a story come alive.

    @Susanna: Thanks, Susanna. Of all the stuff I’ve written, this book is the most high concept. Turns out, readers like that. Who knew?

  74. 74
    Noah Brand says:

    With apologies for plugging myself, I’m a writer myself, and I’m also a story consultant. I’m the opposite of Dorothy; I’m painfully slow about putting words on a page, but I’m very, very fast at structure, character, and plot. If anyone wants some help with that part of the process, I’m available at very reasonable rates.

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