2020 was a struggle... But in the midst of the pandemic and the loss of my mother, I also finished my fourth novel. Here's how a year filled with loss and grief helped me complete a book about loss and grief.
A family photo project reminded me of a road trips from my childhood and how they ultimately came to influence some of my young adult novels.
Combining art with the written word is a very effective way of telling a story. In my upcoming novel, My Summer (Under a Crescent Moon), I'm pushing my own boundaries in combining the two.
Finishing a manuscript should be a joyous relief for an author... and it usually is. But in the era of COVID 19, even our triumphs can produce unexpected emotions.
From COVID-19 to our challenges with racism, we're swamped by numerous storms. Here's how reading and writing can help reduce stress and keep your spirits up during trying times.
During a Pride Month held in the midst of a pandemic as mass protests against racism continue, I asked young people about their thoughts on the world today... and about their hopes for a better tomorrow.
What's in a name? A lot more than you might think. Here's a spoiler-free explanation behind the title of Book 2 in the Quinton's Curious Mind YA series.
The Outsiders. by S.E. Hinton is a classic teen novel which inspired a movie in 1983. But do you remember the short-lived TV series from 1990?
Its star catching on fire during production may have been a bad omen for The Powers of Matthew Star. Things didn't get better.
Whiz Kids was about a group of computer-loving teen nerds. Here's why I found new appreciation for this mostly forgotten TV show 30+ years after its cancellation.
The Mandalorian just finished Season Two in a most satisfying way. Here's my short list of what makes this TV show such great Star Wars.
With The Clone Wars wrapping up some loose ends, here's my 2010 review of the series and thoughts on why it's some of the best Star Wars going.
In the 1990s, Star Wars fans rediscovered in Tunisia the long forgotten sets and props from the original film. Star Wars tourism was born — until certain realities set in.
George Lucas and Star Wars virtually created movie merchandising... but how much is too much?
My first (albeit unpublished) novel was a tale about a mysterious vandal, a parapsychologist and about dark and sinister alter-egos. And it was based on a true story!
As soon as I began renovating my house, I began finding old coins in the walls, behind baseboards or wedged in doorjambs. Was this coincidental... or something much older and stranger?
With most of us practicing social distancing, the COVID-19 world has become a very quiet place. Document this rare tranquility with a short video.
Trying to come up with a plot for your next story or book? This exercise forces you to create a plot based on very meager source material. How did you do?
Comic book conventions are big business in this day and age (when COVID-19 isn't forcing their cancellation). But once upon a time, they were just a bunch of nerds in a room.
For thousands, Mystery Science Theater 3000 is a masterpiece of absurdist humor. So why do some people fail to see the humor or even hate it for the attempt?
I journaled for years... and then stopped. Here's why I regret that decision and why journaling is so valuable to authors.
A sequel to My Summer (with Robots) will be out in 2021! Here's a spoiler-free first look at My Summer (Under the Crescent Moon).
Home renovation offered plenty of headaches, but also the opportunity to design a perfect work environment.
It's 1979 and my mom won't let me see the new horror/sci fi movie called ALIEN. Fortunately, Waldenbooks had a solution.
Regardless of how you felt about the series conclusion, it wasn't your call and it's time to move on with life
Hooray! The internet comes to the rescue in my long search to find a children's book I loved... then forgot about.
My writing was inspired in part by a children's sci fi story... even though it took me 38 years to finish reading it.
Decades after I last played, I ventured back into the world of Dungeons & Dragons. Here's why I fell in love with RPGs.
If you're not paying attention to what your readers are saying, you're doing yourself (and them) a disservice.
Maintaining continuity throughout a book or over a series of books can be a major challenge for authors.
If you're a part-time writer, finding enough time to work on your book can be difficult. Here are some tips to help.
Between my first and second books, I learned a lot of lessons that greatly improved my writing and my confidence.
It's no secret that exercise stimulates creativity... and "purposeful walking" is a technique long used by writers.
Authors of all stripes need to be doing some self-promotion. Here are some social media pitfalls you should avoid
Cold and starkly beautiful, New Zealand's Tongariro National Park is as close as you can get — or would want to get — to Mordor.
Here's why touring the WETA Workshop in Wellington, New Zealand, should be must-see for any Lord of the Rings fan.
Visit the Hobbiton movie set on the north island of New Zealand and you'll probably never want to go home again...
We all have unfinished stories. Thirty years after a day out turned into an exercise in betrayal, I finally finished one.
Every author has their own process when it comes to writing. Mine has a lot to do with not staying in one place.
I went to Greece to walk where legends were born and found inspiration as a writer in a most unexpected place.
Despite what my father thought, serial storytelling in popular culture is very much alive and well... and always has been.
Are you an aspiring writer? Here are some quick, easy games you can play to help hone your craft.
From coffee shops, to libraries to your favorite park bench, the writer's workspace can be a diverse concept.