Is this just fantasy?

Fantasy, you could argue, is the oldest of the literary genres, starting some four or five-thousand years ago when Gilgamesh and Enkidu formed the first party of adventurers and set out to slay Humbaba the Terrible in the name of glory. Ancient peoples told stories of gods that influenced their lives and monsters that layContinue reading “Is this just fantasy?”

Winner of the December 2020 Young Adult Fiction Contest: J.M. Stephens

This month I corresponded with amateur writer J.M. Stephens, winner of the December 2020 YA Fiction contest. Stephens is a mysterious figure who prefers to write erotica but recently branched out into other genres. Most of his work is available on Bookrix.com. Admin: Hey, Mr. Stephens. Thanks for joining me and thank you for submittingContinue reading “Winner of the December 2020 Young Adult Fiction Contest: J.M. Stephens”

The Beginner’s Guide to Creating a Universe Part 4: Technology

This is a continuation of my multi-part listicle on world building. If you want to read the other parts, click here. Technology is a subject of incredible depth in storytelling and world building. Technology, at any level of sophistication, is likely to play a role in your story, and it must be accounted for whenContinue reading “The Beginner’s Guide to Creating a Universe Part 4: Technology”

Winner of the November 2020 Historical Fiction Contest: J.C. Laird

As the only author to submit a story for the November 2020 Historical Fiction contest, J.C. Laird becomes the first two-time winner on Prose Opiate. Since I already covered his personal and professional history as a writer in a previous post, this month, I stuck to questions only about his winning submission, A Destiny Fullfilled.Continue reading “Winner of the November 2020 Historical Fiction Contest: J.C. Laird”

The Beginner’s Guide to Creating a Universe Part 3: Titles and Naming Conventions

This is a continuation of my multi-part listicle on world building. If you want to read the other parts, in which I cover my experiences and opinions on language and time as they pertain to world building, click here. Oboro Dono. Herr Schindler. Agent Bond. Princess Cirilla. Warrant Officer Ripley. Moiraine Sedai. Detective Holmes. LordContinue reading “The Beginner’s Guide to Creating a Universe Part 3: Titles and Naming Conventions”

“Kids These Days”

What a terrible phrase. Of the many failings that adults have, I find the in-group mentality and our pattern of forgetting who we used to be among the most upsetting. It’s tiring, really. There are records of people complaining about “kids these days” dating back thousands of years, and I guarantee that we’ve been regurgitatingContinue reading ““Kids These Days””

The Beginner’s Guide to Creating a Universe Part 2: A Matter of Time

This is a continuation of my multi-part listicle on world building. If you want to read part one, in which I cover my experiences and opinions on language as it pertains to world building, click here. Referencing Time I place time in ninth place among my strata of world-building considerations, just above language, because timeContinue reading “The Beginner’s Guide to Creating a Universe Part 2: A Matter of Time”

The Beginner’s Guide to Creating A Universe Part 1: Language

While attending college, one of my professors gave the class an assignment and provided us with an exhaustive form for worldbuilding that we had to fill out in its entirety to get top marks. I won’t be sharing that with you here, because first: I’m sure it was proprietary in some way, and second: itContinue reading “The Beginner’s Guide to Creating A Universe Part 1: Language”

Making History

Historical fiction is the genre of writing that fictionalizes events in an historical era of Earth. In works of historical fiction, expect to find actors—be they historically grounded or entirely original—actively participating in events of historical significance, or living their stories with an historical event prominent in the background. Think about how the movie TheContinue reading “Making History”

Starting a New Tale

As a writer, the blank page can be the most daunting adversary you’ll ever face. You probably have an idea, and if you have an idea, you probably also have mid or late story scenarios constantly bouncing around your noggin that will be awesome to write—if you can ever manage to get there. Sometimes youContinue reading “Starting a New Tale”