The Beginner’s Guide to Creating a Universe Part 6: Government

I have had an extremely hard time writing this. There’s a reason why a lawyer’s vocation is called a practice. The subject is so vast that no one person can boast such a knowledge of it to be considered truly done with their training. The human mind just isn’t that capable, and boiling it downContinue reading “The Beginner’s Guide to Creating a Universe Part 6: Government”

Winner of the April 2021 Fan Fiction Short Story Contest: J.M. Stephens

Author J.M. Stephens wins the April Fan Fiction writing contest with Batman and Robin: The Chinese Connection, a hilarious, fun-filled romp through the golden-age of television. April 2021—Prose Opiate’s most prolific and frequent contestant, J.M. Stephens, has completed a new e-book and won the April Fan Fiction contest.  Batman and Robin: The Chinese Connection readsContinue reading “Winner of the April 2021 Fan Fiction Short Story Contest: J.M. Stephens”

The Mystery of Mysteries

Writing a good mystery is tough. Mysteries are probably some of the toughest projects I’ve ever undertaken as a writer because I wanted to do it right, and they’re so easy to do wrong. A lazy mystery writer will produce a story that’s technically a mystery, but wrongly relies on unpresented information, esoteric information, convenientContinue reading “The Mystery of Mysteries”

Winner of the March 2021 Science Fiction Short Story Contest: Clark Endicott

Amateur author Clark Endicott wins the March science fiction writing contest with “Moksha,” an action-packed tale that interrogates reality, identity, and loss. March 2021—We received a few good entries for our science fiction short story contest, but Mr. Endicott’s speculative sci-fi action piece, Moksha, stood well above the rest. He declined the author spotlight interview,Continue reading “Winner of the March 2021 Science Fiction Short Story Contest: Clark Endicott”

The Glory and Utility of Fandom

The funny thing about fan fiction is that it exists both at the top and the bottom of the writing food chain. A lot of writers start with fan fiction because they find a story that inspires them so much that it galvanizes them to experiment, and this is why they pick up a penContinue reading “The Glory and Utility of Fandom”

Winner of the February 2021 Romance Short Story Contest: J.M. Stephens

Admin: What can you tell us about the process or inspiration behind The Taxi Driver? What’s the story behind the story? Stephens: To be honest, the story is a very condensed version of a book I wrote called ehookup.org, which follows the story of Ted and Jill, as their marriage deteriorates. As with all myContinue reading “Winner of the February 2021 Romance Short Story Contest: J.M. Stephens”

Science. Fiction.

I have only one piece of advice to offer if you’re thinking about writing a sci-fi story. Write a story that can only be told through the lens of science fiction. I’m afraid sci-fi is too often marginalized as a sub-genre, which boils the term down to an aesthetic rather than its own separate culturalContinue reading “Science. Fiction.”

The Beginner’s Guide to Creating a Universe Part 5: Nature

Taking nature into account during your worldbuilding means thinking about everything that you take for granted. Most stories just take place on Earth. As a resident of Earth (probably) you have at least a cursory understanding of what life on Earth is like. You probably already understand that Earth gets a bit colder near theContinue reading “The Beginner’s Guide to Creating a Universe Part 5: Nature”

What is Love?

It’s time to talk about the romance genre, and I want to start by dropping a bit of a bomb on you (a big bomb if you’re really into romance novels): Romance Novels are just like High Fantasy novels. Seriously. Not only are romance and high fantasy two of the oldest sub-genres known to mankind,Continue reading “What is Love?”

Winner of the January 2021 Fantasy Fiction Contest: J.M. Rivers

Admin: So, first question: Who is J.M. Rivers? Do you write professionally, or only as a hobby? What do you do when you’re not writing? Rivers: J.M. Rivers is a creative who tells stories through words. These words illicit strong emotions and leave lasting impressions. I write mainly as a hobby.  Professionally, I am aContinue reading “Winner of the January 2021 Fantasy Fiction Contest: J.M. Rivers”