May I Introduce You to Fast-Drafting?

The idea behind “fast-drafting” is to prepare yourself ahead of time so that when you get to the point when you are ready to write your first draft, you can just buckle down and fly through it. You don’t work backwards, revise, edit, or get distracted. You don’t even worry all that much about quality.…

Book Review: After

(There are some other books titled After. This should not come as a surprise. I’m not talking about those books.) After by Bruce Greyson, M.D. is nonfiction. It is a sort of recounting of Greyson’s decades studying NDEs (near-death experiences), from his first encounter and complete dubiousness to many serious studies, research, and affiliations to…

Duology Review: Six of Crows

I know I read a lot. I still get intimidated by big books. Funnily enough, Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo is not even 500 pages (similar to the second book, Crooked Kingdom), but the book itself—perhaps because of paper type?—feels bigger than that. And, honestly, I wasn’t that into if for the first quarter…

New Years Book Review: The Alchemist

I really just do my own thing, don’t I? Let’s be direct: I begin every single book I read desiring to enjoy it (and eventually review it favorably). I would like every book to blow my socks off. Alas, reality. For a little while it seemed I rated every book I read highly. But lately?…

The Rest of the Christmas Movie Reviews

I know you probably didn’t come to The Starving Artist for movie reviews and, well, my expertise is in literature and not movies. But I am a very opinionated movie-viewer, and I often tie movies to books as an experience. However, none of the movies below are related to books or to the writing life.…

Book Review: The Silent Patient

I have been handed books by my (now-eighteen-year-old) daughter a couple times (right after she read them), and she has handed me a couple that I loved (like We Were Liars). When I walked in her room several days ago she was balking at the final pages of The Silent Patient. When I said, “What?”,…

I Won Nano

I thought I had won Nanowrimo before. Officially, according to their website, I haven’t even won Camp Nanowrimo (during which you set your own word goal in the summer), but I had come ridiculously close (less than 2000 words) to winning Nano the year I started The Journey of Clement Fancywater (in 2014). Well then,…

The Best Books of Steampunk

So, this is one of those best of lists that is strangely particular. However, it is possible that you are also looking for a list like this one. Perhaps you, too, are suddenly curious about steampunk. A sort of mashup of fantasy and science fiction (though really science fiction), it’s not the world’s largest subgenre,…

Book Review: Circe

If you’ve been paying any attention at The Starving Artist, then you know I am up to my neck in Nanowrimo, the National Novel Writing Month when writers write about 1700 words per day until they have a “novel.” As part of my project this year—a YA fantasy adventure trilogy, book one—I have immersed myself…

Celebrating My Writing Group Friends

Every writer should have a writing group. I say this, but surely there can’t be a writing group with like-talented writers for every writer in every community. So I guess what I mean is, I am thankful for my writing group. A small group (capped at six since its founding) that is joined by invite…

Return to Nanowrimo

It takes an effort to accomplish Nanowrimo and to do other things besides Nanowrimo that you just can’t function without… (For me, this includes cleaning, laundry, making meals, dishes, helping kids with homework, keeping up on the college application process, random appointments like for doctors and grooming, one week singing at church, and always Thanksgiving,…