January 23, 2016

Technological and Critical Divisions over House Divided

The Critical Divide A judge in the 3rd annual Writers’ Digest self-published ebook contest didn’t much like House Divided. She wrote, “What could be an interesting family drama is somewhat overshadowed by the bureaucratic side of Leonard’s job running a counterterrorism task force––the Israel/Palestine conflict is overexplained through these characters.” I can see the basis for that comment, although bureaucratic is not the word I would have chosen. The story does center around the task force’s efforts to uncover the terrorist’s organization in order to stop them from striking a second and third time. If a reader finds “police procedural” story lines boring, then House Divided is not for him/her. In terms of overexplaining the Israel/Palestinian conflict, given that most […]
August 6, 2012

Revising your Novel: When and How

In “7 Steps to a Foolproof Revision,” Don Fry, writing in the September 2012 edition of Writer’s Digest posits “complete your draft, then revise” as step #1. His logic is that if you strive for perfection, you’ll probably never finish your book, or, at least it will take much longer because you’ll be spending so much time re-writing the same sentences over and over again. He recommends “draft the entire piece…and then revise the whole thing, start to finish.” That approach may work well for a short story or non-fiction essay, book review or blog post, but I don’t think many writers will find it works for a novel. For one, most novelists don’t write from start to finish. There […]