Are You Querying Too Early? How to prepare yourself for the trenches.

Though I ultimately chose to self-publish, I did take a run at the query trenches. There are a lot of reasons for agents and publishers to reject a book, even if it’s a good book.

One thing you can do to up your odds of getting your manuscript accepted by an agent or publisher is to make sure you’re actually ready to submit it to them.

How do you know if you’re ready?

Here’s a little checklist.

Finish your book first.

Partial books and outlines are not ready for submission. (Not unless you’re already famous for something else.)

Almost every writer I know has unfinished books lurking on their computer that may or may not ever get finished. It happens. A lot.

Sometimes the author loses steam with the project. Sometimes a new story idea distracts them. Sometimes the aspiring author just decides they don’t want to write at all anymore.

And agents and publishers know this happens.

They will not accept submissions for incomplete manuscripts because they don’t want to even risk wasting their time.

Do a couple of rounds of self-edits.

Submitting a completely unedited manuscript only hurts your chances. You need to look through it, make sure your characters are consistent in their behavior and appearance through the book, check for plot holes, that sort of thing.

Anything you can fix before submissions will only up your odds.

Have beta readers go through it.

You need other people to look at your book. After spending tons of time in that world/with those characters, you know exactly what’s supposed to be on the page. Your brain will fill in the gaps.

A beta reader can find those gaps, those places where you didn’t explain a concept that you understand (because you created it). They’ll find plot holes. They’ll find things that your characters do (or don’t do) that just don’t feel consistent with their personality.

And it’s so much better for them to find these things (so you can fix them) than for an agent to find them (and reject your book for something that could have been addressed).

Research Traditional Publishing vs. Self-Publishing.

Traditional publishing is not for everyone. It works for many authors, but not all.

Querying is a grueling process. Going through it only to realize months (or years) later that self-publishing is the better route for you personally… is a waste of time and effort.

Do some research before submitting to any agents or publishers to make sure this is the right path for you. Weigh the pros and cons of both.

For me, self-publishing makes more sense, but that may not be the case for you.

I’m willing to take on the extra work of formatting and metadata and copyrights and lining up editing and cover art in exchange for the creative control allowed by self-publishing.

But if the idea of that extra work makes you cringe and you just want someone else to handle it (even if it means they get the final say over what they book looks and reads like), then traditional might be better for you.

Look into it for yourself.

All of the above steps are necessary early steps whether you go with self-publishing or traditional publishing, but from here on, it’s specific to the query trenches.

Research publishers and agents.

There are so many out there, but they don’t all want your book. Each publisher and agent has a network in place for books of a specific genre, a specific age group, specific tropes, etc.

Furthermore, they don’t always accept submissions.

Many have specific dates/times of the year where they open for submissions. Agents can only work with so many authors at a time (varies from agent to agent), and publishers only publish a certain number of books a year (varies from publisher to publisher depending on the size of the company).

Some publishers only accept submissions from agents, not directly from authors.

So do your research here. Compile a list of places to submit that accept your genre, age range, level of gore, level of sexiness, tropes, etc.

Submit to the ones you can. Set reminders in your phone to submit to places that open later in the year.

Prepare your submission materials.

Every single agent or publisher has a whole slew of things they want submitted alongside the manuscript (or a portion of the manuscript). Take the time to get these right.

If you don’t include a cover letter when they specifically requested one, they might not even bother to read your first page.

If you don’t format your manuscript how they want it formatted, they might not read the first page.

If you give them a three page synopsis instead of a one page synopsis (Because you already had a three page one and surely that’s good right? That’s giving them extra.) they probably won’t read the three page synopsis. Or your manuscript.

These submission materials are basically like a job interview. They’re seeing how well you pay attention to basic guidelines, how much you’re going to fight and try to slide by with stuff they don’t let fly. After all, anyone they offer a contract is going to have deadlines and things they have to do (to the agent/publishers standards) within that time.

But these materials are also meant to show them if your book is a good fit for them and make it as easy to digest as possible. They look at thousands of manuscripts, and they have to be able to pick out the ones they want relatively quickly.

Making their lives difficult probably won’t get you a book deal.

Personalize the submission materials.

Show them that you actually looked at their website, their catalog of books, the authors they work with. (Which you should do to see if your book is actually a good fit for them.) Show them that you did some research, that way they can take your submission seriously.

Check out Query Shark.

This website has a lot of help for getting a solid query letter. Don’t just submit yours to them for critique though.

Read through the ones that have already been critiqued/revised and apply the advice to your own query letter.

You can find those here.


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On the Dilemma of Genre Hopping

In the past week, I’ve worked on writing a literary fantasy romance and editing a literary sci-fi fantasy epic, thought of ways to advertise my recently released literary thriller romance, and came up with ideas for a sci-fi novel and a literary zombie apocalypse romance.

So, to say that I hop genres might be an understatement.

Now, every big marketing expert whose classes I’ve taken said that hopping genres is a bad idea.

Truthfully, it does make marketing a great deal harder.

But.

I can’t imagine sitting down to force myself to write something I hate just because it’s in the same genre as something else I wrote. The idea of spending months with a story or world or plot or character that I just couldn’t sink myself into seems exhausting, and I’m pretty sure it would ruin writing for me.

So I refuse to settle into one genre.

And I don’t have the energy to maintain a social media platform for pen names for every genre.

Which means that it does make marketing harder.

But it isn’t impossible.

You just have to find the unifying theme in all your books and really lean into that. In blurbs, in ads, in social media posts, everywhere you talk about your books, lean into that unifying theme.

For me, it’s the grit and psychology, the character development and the fact that these characters go through real shit (even if the world they’re in is far from real).

That, and my writing style. Lyrical, full of sentence fragments and short paragraphs for the sake of flow, providing only necessary details, first person/present tense.

Those things all together mean that my books, even when they’re fantasy or sci-fi or a thriller, are literary fiction.

So, I need to lean into that.

Character profiles and details about their struggles, their traumas, their strife.

Things like that.

So if you’re debating on whether to hop genres, you need to make a decision.

Which is more important, writing what you want or having a more straightforward marketing path?

If you plan to hop genres, going wherever your heart wants with your books, then you need either multiple pen names or you need to find that thing that unifies your books.

Maybe it’s that all your books have a love triangle. Maybe it’s that they all contain a clean romance tucked within the larger plot. Maybe it’s that you prioritize world building.

Lean into that in your marketing efforts so you can attract the right readers, people who’ll want to read all your books, regardless of the genre the story is contained within.

(My main problem so far, if I’m being completely honest, is that I tend to prioritize every other aspect of the writing and publishing process over marketing/advertising.)

But if you really lean into that unifying theme across your books (and actually market and advertise), you can hop to your heart’s content and still build a fan base that will follow you through the genres.


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Plot Armor (And How To Avoid It)

We’ve all seen it. The character that always scrapes by because they’re the main character (or the main love interest), no matter how ridiculously high the stakes are and no matter how unrealistic it is for them to come out okay.

Some genres demand a happy end for the book (Romance, in particular), but that doesn’t mean that your characters should just have everything work out through sheer force of luck and having you on their side.

That level of un-realism takes away from the story.

So here are a few things you can give your character in lieu of plot armor.

Knowledge

Give them the information necessary to realistically survive what you’re throwing at them. Some battles are best won with brain rather than brawn.

Build a subset of knowledge into their background (a hobbyist in the family who liked learning about the things they’re facing or maybe a previous job that had parallels). Make them research and plan.

Or just straight up give them a teacher.

Mentors can be excellent side characters.

Skills

Make these people practice. Make them learn combat or lockpicking or endurance running.

Maybe they ran track in high school. Maybe they were in the army or your book’s equivalent. Maybe they dropped out and lived on the streets, stealing what they needed to get by.

Or maybe their life changed at the beginning of the book and they found a mentor for the skills they’d need. Trial and error is a pretty harsh teacher, but also an option.

Allies

More than one person working toward the same goal will almost certainly increase the chances of achieving it.

Now, these people aren’t meant to be bullet sponges or cannon fodder, though some may end that way.

But a prepper friend can teach your MC about filtering water and keep them from getting dysentery in the apocalypse.

A friend who’s also a cop could help them talk down (or subdue) an assailant.

The Ending

Maybe give them the realistic ending. Tragedies may not be as common now, but they are part of literature. And though it might mean a genre change for some (dark romantic fantasy instead of dark fantasy romance), it could be worth it to stick to what would really happen.

That last one is the choice I would go with, but that’s just me.


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Writing Rules Are More Like Guidelines

There are so many rules for writing that it’d be hard to count them all, even more so if you consider all the advice that’s out there.

Show don’t tell, don’t edit as you write, write every day, avoid adverbs, write in the morning, write at night, write drunk/edit sober, avoid passive voice, plan your book, don’t plan your book, write to market, don’t use sentence fragments, avoid dialogue tags other than ‘said,’ avoid using the dialogue tag ‘said’…

The list goes on and on and on. It’s enough to make your head spin.

Following them all is pretty much impossible, especially when they contradict each other (like some of the ones I mentioned up there). Not to mention the fact that following every single one eliminates any wiggle room for personal style.

Which is why I like to think of them as guidelines.

Everyone is different.

That’s a pretty well accepted fact.

And it means that everyone works differently and likes different things.

So, for the sake of standing out from the crowd, for the sake of truly expressing ourselves and the stories we have in our heads, for the sake of allowing ourselves to write in a way that actually works for us and our lives/personal challenges, some rules must be broken.

Or at least bent.

I use sentence fragments and short paragraphs all the time. I start sentences with conjunctions (which is technically a correct sentence format but everyone thinks it’s wrong). I don’t write every day, I never plan my books, and I always do some level of editing while I write.

Because those are some of the rules that just don’t work for me.

But it is important to learn the rules, to understand why they are the way they are, so you know when to break them.

For example, writing every day is a good way to get into a habit and keep the creative juices flowing.

But allowing myself to skip a day of writing helps me not feel guilty so that when I do write, I’m not psyching myself out by trying to make up for lost days. I don’t have time on days where I work twelve hour shifts, and sometimes I need to edit instead of write.

So, skipping days is fine for me. I don’t need the habit to get myself to finish my books.

Another thing I do that isn’t necessarily correct according to rules… Sentence fragments, short paragraphs, and starting sentences with conjunctions.

People just aren’t typically accustomed to these things. There is the risk of pushing a reader out of the narrative simply because these aren’t the norm. Same with first person/present tense.

But.

They work for my writing style, my author voice. They go a long way toward establishing flow, getting the cadence just right. And for me, that’s important. It fits with my writing style.

So, take the time to learn some of the writing rules. You should know them, really. But don’t be afraid to step outside the lines and move beyond those rules.

Writing is, at the very core of its essence, an act of creativity.

Just like some painters throw colors together that shouldn’t go together (and somehow make them work) and some musicians combine genres that just shouldn’t work (and somehow make them fit), writers have the amazing ability to do things that just shouldn’t make sense…

And somehow, make it work.

Learn some rules, and then decide if they work for you, your story, and your style.


Check out my gritty, literary sci-fi and fantasy books here.

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A Message To New (Or Experienced) Writers About Doubt

Do you ever feel like a hack? Like a terrible writer masquerading as someone worth reading?

I do.

I wish I could tell you that it goes away, that once you write a certain number of books or sell a certain number of copies, you’ll magically feel better about your writing and never have doubts ever again.

But that isn’t quite how it works.

How do I know that?

I’ve written 12 books, working on number 13 at the moment, and I’ve published 7 of those so far. I have a small group of people who love my books, who follow me from one genre to another because they like my writing style. I’ve sold a respectable number of books (not a bestseller by any means, but respectable).

But this past weekend…

I’ve been questioning everything, wondering if I’ve lost my touch, if I ever really had it at all, if this next book will be the one that shows everyone that I’m actually terrible and should be shunned or laughed at.

All authors go through that, time and time again.

Self-doubt and imposter syndrome are pretty common among creatives.

It’s an unfortunate side effect of working with such subjective mediums. Whether it’s painting, writing, sculpting, playing music, whatever. Anything so subjective as art leaves the artist (yep, that includes writers) open to potential criticism that might conflict directly with praise from another source. It makes it hard to evaluate our work objectively.

And that’s where doubt comes in.

It makes us wonder which piece of feedback was right, and the worst part is… sometimes it’s all correct because opinion plays such a huge role.

Add in the struggles of actually writing (writer’s block, the absolute mountain range that is advertising, avoiding scam publishers, etc.), and there are a lot of things to get a writer down.

And it all contributes to the self-doubt.

Some days, you feel equal to the task at hand. Other days… not so much.

So how do you combat it?

First, by learning to trust yourself and accepting that you’re human. Which means that achieving perfection isn’t possible.

Second, by getting feedback from multiple sources. Assess all feedback for common threads. Then, hold onto the positive comments and learn from the negative.

Doubt doesn’t have to be a stumbling block.

It can be a tool to hone your skills.

After all, a person who never doubts their abilities never sees either a need or a way to improve.

Third, and most importantly, write anyway. Even if you’re doubting yourself, write anyway.


Check out my gritty, literary sci-fi and fantasy books here.

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How to Find Time to Write

One of the biggest problems most writers face is time. There never seems to be enough of it.

And while that’s certainly true, especially since most of us work another job (or two) and have families, there are a few things that we do to get in our own way.

So, buckle up. This isn’t about organization or getting yourself into the writing zone faster with music (though that does help me).

This is about getting real with yourself so you can stop hindering your own progress.

Prioritize your writing… By dealing with deeper issues.

If you want to write your book, if you want to publish it, if you want to pursue this seriously, you have to make it a priority.

But it isn’t that simple, I know. Sometimes, blocking out a day or an hour to write can be done, and we just don’t do it.

You need to figure out why you let this dream of yours get shoved to the back burner, and then confront that. Stop dealing in symptoms and start dealing in root causes.

For a long time, I didn’t think myself worthy of having a dream. Which made it awfully hard to make that dream a priority. Dealing with self-worth issues isn’t a quick thing, and I still struggle with it often, but it has to be dealt with. For many reasons, obviously.

But without confronting that, without realizing that was holding me back, I never would’ve started on this path, let alone made it a priority in my life.

Fear of failure held me back for a while, too. I didn’t treat my writing time with the respect it deserved because I was afraid that I’d fail, that I wouldn’t be good enough, that no one would care or want to read what I wrote.

So why bother, right?

I didn’t sit down to write when I should have, when I clearly had time, because who would care one way or the other?

But self-sabotage is a terrible road to walk, and it has to be confronted if you truly want to achieve things.

So, if writing your book is important to you, figure out the real problems stopping you. Then, deal with those problems. If you won’t do it for you and the obvious fact that things like this need dealt with, then do it so you can make your dreams the priority they need to be.

Do it so you can stop wasting the time that you do have to write.

Tell the people in your life that this is important to you.

This part can be scary, but if no one knows your writing is important to you, then they won’t consider your writing time to be sacred. They’ll interrupt you or try to persuade you to do other things because they don’t know it means something to you.

Most people who don’t write don’t understand the bond between a writer and their characters or the need to get these stories out of our heads.

Not unless we explain it to them.

Stop procrastinating.

This gets back into that self-sabotage thing that I mentioned earlier, because that’s all procrastination is. Self-sabotage. But it’s such a major pitfall, that it had to have its own section.

Social media is absolutely flooded with memes about procrastination. I know you’ve seen them, usually something along the lines of:

*opens laptop*
*opens Scrivener*
*prepares to write*
*gets on instagram*

It’s infuriating!

Stop cutting yourself off at the knees and write your damn book.

That might mean less time scrolling through social media. That might mean less time watching TV. It might mean less time sitting on the couch staring into space in existential dread. (Yes, I’m a millennial. Why do you ask?)

But if you want to write your book, you have to freaking write. It isn’t going to just write itself. You aren’t going to wake up one morning, having fallen asleep at your computer, only to find the next Pulitzer Prize winning novel has materialized in the night.

Someone has to do the work and put in the time, and if you want it to be your book that gets written, that someone is you.


Check out my gritty, literary sci-fi and fantasy books here.

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Success, Writing, and Other People (And How to Cope)

Upon hearing that you’re a writer, people will, almost invariably, ask if you’re successful. They ask in different ways.

Sometimes it’s, “Do you have anything published?” Or “Did you get a big book deal?”

Sometimes it’s, “How many books have you sold?”

It’s stressful, to say the least, especially since creative types (like us writers) are prone to insecurity and imposter syndrome.

But success is subjective.

One person’s idea of success is different from another’s. Where one person might see becoming a New York Times bestseller with three movies in the works as the only measure of success, another might see publishing a book at all as a measure of success. One person might need millions of followers, whereas another might want a small group of engaged followers.

And those differences are important.

Knowing what success actually means to you is the a pretty big step toward achieving it.

If you want a high follow count, if you want a close network of fellow writers, if you want to release a book before your 60th birthday, if you want to release three books in a year, if you want to sell millions, or if writing a book is what matters to you, then that’s your measure of success.

And that should be your focus.

For someone with extreme anxiety, publishing a book that has your heart and soul carved into the pages, putting yourself out there in written form, is a daunting task and a worthy goal.

Whereas someone without anxiety disorders might not see that as the challenging part.

To someone burdened by ADHD, finishing a book might be the challenge, and thus the point at which to feel successful, whereas a person with an average attention span might not see that as quite so big of a challenge.

So, you need to figure out your measure of your own success.

And when someone inevitably asks if you’re successful, focus on that.

Most people who aren’t writers don’t know it’s such a stressful question, but they also don’t usually know everything that writing entails. (Or even half of it.) So, enlighten them, all while focusing what you say on the goals you have set for yourself.

For example, if your goal, your measure of success, is to land a book deal and you’re deep in the query trenches, tell them you’re looking for an agent, but finding one that’s accepting submissions like your book is challenging.

Or tell them about all the various side materials you have to put together before you can even submit to agents. Query letters, cover letters (because yeah, there are differences), one page synopses, three page synopses, single sentence summaries that include the ending, five year marketing plans, and all the other hoops writers have to jump through to get a book deal.

Talk about the research that has to be done to find agents to submit your book to, finding agents that work with your genre, subgenre, and age group who are actually taking submissions.

Talk about the unbelievably low acceptance rates, especially if you’re submitting directly to publishers (which adds extra layers of research because a lot won’t accept from authors to begin with and those who do accept maybe 1-2% of submissions).

Find your individual measure of success, and then stick to it, even when people ask about it.

If they measure success by becoming the next J.K. Rowling, explain how unlikely that is and tell them why your sights are set where they are.

Writing is a very personalized journey, and so is success.

Embrace it.


Check out my gritty, literary sci-fi and fantasy books here.

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How to Write like a Reader

Sometimes, as writers, we ignore one of the greatest resources at our disposal: our own experiences as readers.

A vast well of knowledge resides within us, but sometimes we get caught up trying to figure out the rules and completely forget about that.

Our pet peeves as readers should guide us as writers.

Examples from my own personal pet peeves (and thus, my personal guides for my own books):

Blurb vs Review Quotes

I can’t stand a back cover full of review quotes. I want to see the blurb when I turn a book over, not some quote calling it “derisive” or “nebulous.”

Kindly fuck off with that shit.

I want to turn the book over and see what it’s about.

So when I publish, I put the blurb on the back cover. I might have a pull quote somewhere on there, but the blurb is front and center. (Well, back and center because it’s the back of the book.)

Series Numbers

I don’t typically write series (my current, almost completed wip being the exception), but from my experience as a reader, I will have Book One or Book Two or Book Whatever Number The Series Reaches on the cover and spine. There have been so many times that I’ve picked up a book and learned after reaching the end of it that there are 4 or 7 more books.

It’s infuriating.

So as a writer, I won’t do that to my readers.

Inconsistent Characters for Convenience

I hate when characters make stupid decisions that don’t line up with their personalities but are convenient for the plot. So as a writer, I won’t do that.

Head Hopping

I love books with multiple POVs, so I often write them. But I hate when the point of view changes without warning/within the same scene or chapter. Even worse… within the same paragraph.

So for the sake of my readers, when I change POV in a book, I start a new chapter and put the characters name below the chapter number, because that’s how I prefer to read it.

There are so many little things that we’ve learned as readers that can make us better writers or improve the reading experience as a whole for our readers.

So, next time you’re faced with a decision about your cover or your formatting or whatever, switch from writer brain to reader brain.

Do whatever wouldn’t piss you off as a reader.


Check out my gritty, literary sci-fi and fantasy books here.

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Things I Wish I Knew When I Started Writing

Being an author has a pretty steep learning curve. There are a lot of lessons to learn, and thanks to hindsight, they seem obvious after the fact.

So, today, I wanted to share a few of those things with you to ease the learning process.

Regardless of your publishing path (traditional vs. self), you’ll have to do marketing.

When I started writing, I assumed that traditional publishers would do all the marketing. Then, I started querying and found that many publishers required marketing plans to be submitted along with the query. (One asked for a five year plan, even though most traditional publishers give a book a two year shelf life.)

So clearly, some of the marketing falls to the author. And if you’re self-publishing, it all falls to you.

(Btw, this marketing effort includes your author platform. More on that in a minute.)

Self-publishing is a valid publishing avenue (but it is exactly what you make it).

Treating self-publishing as a “trash bin” when you get frustrated with querying actually perpetuates the stigma of self-publishing.

Please, PLEASE, don’t do that.

Self-publishing is a viable publishing avenue, and it will treat you exactly as well as you treat it. If you do your research, if you put in the effort, you can produce a quality product that readers (and you) will love.

And if you work on your marketing and advertising, you can sell a decent amount of books.

Your author platform is vital.

It connects you with readers, often for little-to-no money. There are a lot of ways to build it, and a lot of different platforms you can work with.

Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, a website, a blog, Tumblr, Reddit, Snapchat, YouTube, TikTok, Goodreads, All Author, the list goes on and on. It seems like there are a million different social media options.

You don’t have to be on every platform. That’s way too much pressure, and you’ll be spreading yourself too thin.

Start with one or two that you’re comfortable with and build those. When you feel like you have a handle on that, branch onto another.

Post about what you’re reading and why you like it. Post about your projects and how you write or plot.

And be sure to start a newsletter. Send it out regularly (whether that’s every other month, monthly, weekly, whatever) and make sure your readers know when to expect it. You can get a bit more personal here, showing more behind the scenes stuff to engage readers.

The earlier you start your author platform, the better.

It takes time (a fuck ton of time) to build an author platform. The more (real, active) people you can count among your audience, the better your book release will be. And if you’re looking to go traditional, a good audience is a bragging point for your query or marketing plan.

Be you.

Who you are, your author voice, is what will make your books stand out. Make sure that comes through on whatever platforms you choose.

There’s a market for everything.

Please, stop worrying about whether anyone will like your idea. The world is vast and full of different types of people with different interests.

Even if your idea is a niche, there’s an audience out there for it. You just have to find them.

Chaos or organization, it doesn’t matter. Write the way that works for you.

Everyone is different. Everyone learns differently, and everyone communicates differently. So please, give yourself the freedom to write the way you need to, whether that means intensive planning or no planning at all.

Don’t pay publishers.

Publishers that charge you hundreds or thousands of dollars are scams. Plain and simple. Run far away from them.

Trust me.

I’ve dealt with them, and it’s fucking terrible.

Don’t pay reviewers.

Book reviewers might get a free book in exchange for an honest review if they’re an ARC reader or if they’re working with a book tour company. But if they message you saying that they’ll review and promote your book for a fee, don’t mess with them.

Even setting morals aside, a lot of sites will remove paid reviews, and that renders the money wasted. (I’m pretty sure Amazon is one of those.)


Want to help fund this blog and my writing efforts? You can support me directly here.

Check out my gritty, literary sci-fi and fantasy books here.

Subscribe for sneak peeks and updates on my upcoming books (and get a free short story).

Write as weird as you want.

Sometimes, our ideas carry us away. That’s why we do this, right?

But other times, we let doubt get in the way.

When writing fantasy and science fiction, we question whether or not we can expect people to believe something, whether it’s realistic. All these strange and fantastical things in our heads just seem too big, too different.

But it’s fantasy. It’s science fiction.

Anything can be realistic if you make the world support it.

And honestly, there are some truly weird things in our world that people don’t question, or maybe barely question. (Vulture bees making honey from meat. People keeping the baby teeth of their children.)

Anything can be realistic for a fictional world if you shape the world to make it work. The history of these fictional worlds can support any tradition. The evolution of these worlds can produce any species we want.

The believability of an idea isn’t the problem.

The real problem is deeper.

We question ourselves and our ability to pull these things off.

We’re making up entire worlds, entire people, entire timelines. We’re doing things that are truly amazing.

A planet with rivers that flow up into the air may as well happen. Maybe it’s a hollow planet, and those rivers are inside it? Maybe there’s a gravitational anomaly caused by a malfunction in a lab? Who knows? You just have to put in the time and the effort to explain it. And then stand by it.

What we’re doing is meant to be fun, but that doesn’t always mean it’ll be easy.

And sometimes, we’re the ones making it harder for ourselves. We doubt our ideas at every turn, cutting ourselves off at the knees.

Stop worrying about whether it’s realistic to have an animal the size of a whale fly through the sky. In our world, no. But in your world? In the world you’re building?

Go for it.

Give it some sort of mechanical support or engine. Enhance it with magic.

Make it work.

That thing you have in your head that you’re doubting might be the thing that a reader loves the most about your book.

Just build the supports for it into the framework of the world and have a little faith in yourself.


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