Posts from the ‘Writing’ Category

  • When It All Came Apart In a Violent Physical Explosion

    September 7th, 2018 | Writing | journalpulp | No Comments

    She felt a hammer blow deep inside her body, and then there was a dull pop that sounded to the audience like a ghastly thud. The integrity of her left ankle gave way the moment just before she went into that final series of fouettés. The ankle snapped and her foot flopped the other way. […]

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  • Brain Damage and the Daredevil Too Slippery to Hold

    April 11th, 2018 | Writing | journalpulp | 1 Comment

    ______________   On a lovely spring day in Southern California, 2009, a young man with blue-black hair and dark skin arrived late and winded at the starting area of a much-anticipated track race. A small breeze blew down from the north and a whisper of lilac laced the currents. The young man was of Navajo […]

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  • 7 Stupendously Simple Ways to Make Yourself Into a Better Writer

    November 30th, 2016 | Writing | journalpulp | No Comments

    Suppose someone were to tell you that you could become a better writer in a single week — would you believe it? Me neither. And yet that’s precisely what I’m about to do. And more: I’m about to make a believer out of you. I tried this on a bet — and lost. Here is how you […]

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  • Gap-Toothed Girl

    October 5th, 2016 | Writing | journalpulp | 2 Comments

      Chapter 1   Tournament night in a sweltering Las Vegas stadium, and the girl with the gap-toothed smile stood bleeding in her ballet slippers. The sodium lights of the arena lay upcast on the low-hanging sky above. There was an electrical charge in the air: a crackling undercurrent that came neither from the lights […]

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  • How To Write Perfect Pulp Fiction

    How To Write Perfect Pulp Fiction

    July 13th, 2015 | Writing | journalpulp | Comments Off on How To Write Perfect Pulp Fiction

    Have you ever heard of Lester Dent, nom-de-plume Kenneth Robeson? He was born in 1904, in La Plata, Missouri, and died fifty-four years later. His writing career spanned a total of thirty years — during which time he managed to crank out an astonishing 175 novels, or more. Still, despite such spectacular fecundity, the names […]

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  • Become a More Productive Writer

    April 10th, 2014 | Writing | journalpulp | No Comments

    “If you’re just starting out as a writer, you could do worse than strip your television’s electric plug wire, wrap a spike around it, and then stick it back into the wall. See what blows, and how far.” –Stephen King, On Writing I admit it: Stephen King has never been my cup of tea, and […]

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  • Creative Writing Courses are a “Waste of Time”

    Creative Writing Courses are a “Waste of Time”

    March 17th, 2014 | Writing | journalpulp | 2 Comments

    The novelist Hanif Kureishi — who teaches creative writing at Kingston University, and whom I’d frankly never heard of before I saw this article — has recently come under some fire for remarks he made to The Guardian newspaper: “A lot of my students just can’t tell a story. They can write sentences but they […]

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  • Want To Be A Writer? Drop Out of College

    Want To Be A Writer? Drop Out of College

    June 20th, 2013 | Writing Talent | journalpulp | 4 Comments

    In an interview Truman Capote once gave, he said the following about becoming a writer: “The last thing in the world I would do was waste my time going to college, because I knew what I wanted to do. The only reason to go to college is if you want to be a doctor, a […]

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  • Five Reasons I’ll Keep Reading Your Story

    Five Reasons I’ll Keep Reading Your Story

    April 25th, 2013 | Writing | journalpulp | 3 Comments

    Actually, there are many reasons — many more than five — that I’ll keep reading your story, but there are also at least as many reasons I won’t. (For example: He had nothing in the way of a like God-concept, and at that point maybe even less than nothing in terms of interest in the […]

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  • Do Not Start A Story With The Protagonist Waking Up

    Do Not Start A Story With The Protagonist Waking Up

    September 6th, 2012 | Writing | journalpulp | 2 Comments

    “Do not start a story with the protagonist waking up,” says Joe Konrath. But with him here — as with so many other things — I must demur. Konrath’s peevish list of proscriptions came to my attention recently via Radical Roz Morris, who wrote about another preposterous notion Mr. Konrath (along with many others) has: […]

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  • Writing Advice From Margaret Atwood and Vladimir Nabokov

    Writing Advice From Margaret Atwood and Vladimir Nabokov

    June 27th, 2012 | Writing | journalpulp | 2 Comments

    Margaret Atwood: Hold the reader’s attention. (This is likely to work better if you can hold your own.) But you don’t know who the reader is, so it’s like shooting fish with a slingshot in the dark. What ­fascinates A will bore the pants off B. Writing is work. It’s also gambling. You don’t get […]

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  • Eavesdropping

    Eavesdropping

    March 1st, 2012 | Writing Games | journalpulp | 5 Comments

    There’s a game that certain writers like to play — and in answer to your next question, it’s not called Hide-The-Salami (although that one is popular with certain writers as well, myself perhaps foremost among them), but “Eavesdropping.” Here’s how you play: Sit in a public place. Sit near people who look interesting. Have something […]

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  • Writing Talent and the Dirty Little Secret of the Natural-Born Writer

    January 6th, 2012 | Writing Talent | journalpulp | 12 Comments

    There’s a dirty little secret about writing talent which editors and publishers don’t usually speak of, but which I’d like to share. That dirty little secret is this: Writing talent doesn’t really exist. As a matter of fact, there’s no such thing as innate writing talent, and the most important trait a writer can possess […]

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