Five Top Five: Things I have learned writing the Argetallam Saga

For my final Five Top Five post, I am talking about the top five things I have learned writing the Argetallam Saga. Don’t forget today is also your last chance to get the first two books for free and The Chalice of Malvron for $0.99

Now is better than later

Procrastinator Extraordinaire is my unofficial title. I can put off things until “the end of this soundtrack,” “after dinner,” or “as soon as the kids are in bed.” But if I’m doing nothing, nothing gets written. If I want to let my characters speak, I must write. Write when I don’t feel like it, write when I must force my fingers to move over the keyboard. Write, write, write!

If you don’t write it, nobody will

I have all these stories inside me that are trampling over each other in the rush to get out. They want to be written and I need to write them or they will stay trapped in my neurons for all eternity. Me and no one else can tell the stories locked in this mind, same for any writer. It’s no use wishing for a magic button or little elves to finish the books. Writing is the only answer.

Search and Replace are your best friends

I love this Word feature. Without it, I would have to pick through my manuscripts manually to check the spellings of words. They have made everything so much easier and I can only imagine what it must have been like fifty years ago when everything was still written in hardcopies.

Villains are people too

I believe the best villains have good qualities that make the reader empathetic to them as well as vices and flaws that make us hate them. I have tried two times in particular to create purely evil characters and found myself rooting for them in spite of everything. As Stephen King said, even villains usually think themselves good.

Proofreading is EVIL

Typos are the cockroaches of literature—they can survive anything. It is a scientific fact that we do our best proofreading after we have hit either “send” or “publish.” No matter how many times you comb through a manuscript, there will still be those insidious little typos, waving at you from the pages. In an attempt to wipe out the scourge, you comb through your manuscript again and again until you come to hate each word of your own writing and still a handful of typos endure!


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