Writers v. Beta Readers: Critique Series Part 1

Author's note: I have been wanting to write a bit more on the nature of critique and the relationship writers have with critics for some time now, but I have realized it will likely take more than one post in order to properly articulate all my feelings on the subject. As such, I will do [...]

Babes in Tropeland: Not ANOTHER Alcoholic Dad, Please

For decades the easiest way to get across to the audience the protagonist was a poor-unfortunate soul was to make them an orphan; someone with no northern star to guide them through this perilous hell-scape we call existence. It was a method to make the main character sympathetic from the get-go, but it was also [...]

Thoughts on “Malorie” by Josh Malerman

SPOILERS FOR "BIRD BOX" and "MALORIE" READER DISCRETION ADVISED Amazon Summary: Twelve years after Malorie and her children rowed up the river to safety, a blindfold is still the only thing that stands between sanity and madness. One glimpse of the creatures that stalk the world will drive a person to unspeakable violence. There remains [...]

“Beach Read” by Emily Henry (Spoiler-Free Review)

Summary: A romance writer who no longer believes in love and a literary writer stuck in a rut engage in a summer-long challenge that may just upend everything they believe about happily ever afters. Beach Read is not a book I would normally read. I typically favor thrillers, historical fictions, or some manner of creepy existential [...]

Thoughts on “Metamorphosis” by Franz Kafka

Spoilers: I know this book is over a hundred years old, but, you know, whatever. I will admit I went into this novella not expecting much. Based on some of the spoiler-light commentary I read on this novella, I was expecting there to be a lot of pseudo-psychological mumbo-jumbo and pretentious navel-gazing. ....Buuuuuut the audiobook [...]

Thoughts on “The Shadows” by Alex North

Summary from Amazon: You knew a teenager like Charlie Crabtree. A dark imagination, a sinister smile--always on the outside of the group. Some part of you suspected he might be capable of doing something awful. Twenty-five years ago, Crabtree did just that, committing a murder so shocking that it’s attracted that strange kind of infamy that [...]

Writer Problems: Word Drought

I like to think I have acquired a decent collection of words over the course of my life. Words are, after all, a writer's currency. Barring the ability to articulate a certain vision, words are arguably the most important tool in a writer's arsenal. Without them we are useless. However, ever so often, I find [...]

Thoughts on “Invisible Girl” by Lisa Jewell

WARNING: The following contains spoilers for the novel. Reader discretion is advised. Amazon summary: Young Saffyre Maddox spent three years under the care of renowned child psychologist Roan Fours. When Dr. Fours decides their sessions should end, Saffyre feels abandoned. She begins looking for ways to connect with him, from waiting outside his office to [...]

What the Backlash of “Twilight” Taught Me

The Twilight series is something I have been wanting to talk about for some time now, but lacked the courage to do so. It is potentially one of the most openly hated books to come out of the 21st century (a position only recently overtaken by 50 Shades of Grey) and is still mocked to [...]

It’s Okay to Not Finish That Book

I don't know who you are..... I don't know what you are reading.... But you don't have to finish that book. I know everyone in the book community is crowing about how good it is, how "important," how transformative. But those people are dumb. Okay, they aren't dumb, they just have different opinions than you. [...]