Tag: fiction

  • Fiction: Outlines

    Fiction: Outlines

    Outlines can be dicey, to say the least. Here’s my first fear: if I write out an entire outline for a story, will I feel forced to stick with it, even though the narrative might be going another way? Because, if things are really grooving, and you’re in the zone for weeks at a time, […]

  • Fiction: Pick a Chaos, Any Chaos

    Fiction: Pick a Chaos, Any Chaos

    Every novel needs a little chaos in it. That’s what ignites the story. The novel begins with a character or two in their regular, everyday lives (that could be anything from a pimp drinking coffee at Starbucks, to an astronaut doing her daily orbit around Mars). Then something happens to them, an event or a […]

  • First Notes on the Novel

    First Notes on the Novel

    According to my journals, I wrote the first notes for my novel The Holy Spirit of My Uncle’s Cojones on August 2, 1996. “No title yet,” I wrote, “but it’s about the summer of 1978.” Oh, I remember that summer; it was illicit, a little risky, and it woke me up to life. Eighteen years […]

  • My Rat

    My Rat

    I was at war with a rat for four months. It was a losing battle; nearly every morning for sixteen weeks, we woke to half-eaten bananas and apples, their skins punctured a hundred times with pin-sized incisors and the flesh eaten out. The rat liked symmetry: the hole was a perfect O. He burrowed into […]