Hey writers, ever wonder if what you’re writing is just too out there? Ever read over your work and think, hang on, this epic fantasy involving an alien invasion on a middle earth style planet that includes a romance between a female ‘blob’ alien and a bald elf/orc half breed with webbed feet is just too much? Ok, perhaps that example was a little too much, but if written well, you would draw the reader in to such a complex world gently and introduce the crazy ass concepts so they wouldn’t even seem that crazy by the time they occurred. 

What is interesting is that reality is often far weirder than fiction.

Today’s news stories include over 700 Muslims who perished in a stampede at Mecca whilst they were on a part of their pilgrimage to throw stones at pillars that represent the devil... I’m sincerely sad for the loss of life in this distressingly tragic case, if ever there was an example of meaningless deaths on a large scale, there you have it.  The very next news story that flashed up on my screen was the fact that notoriously anti-gay Russian leader Vladimir Putin has offered to meet the notoriously homosexual Elton John to discuss gay rights. This occurred after pranksters tricked Sir Elton into thinking that Putin wanted to talk to him, and now, somehow Putin does actually want to talk to him. Finally, the Pope has praised capitalism...

The world is a crazy place filled with amazing, unusual, tragic, unexpected and astonishing occurrences on a daily basis.  If I’d have written the news stories above into a book as having occurred all on the same day, it would have appeared unbelievable. In fiction, we often like our big story events delivered to us at a reasonable pace, not all lumped together in one massive section where the characters have no time to react and reflect and the reader can’t process it all at once. But in reality, drama is sporadic, we can go for months with nothing happening and then get a massive glut of shock and awe on the global stage.

It’s something to think about, next time you worry that you’re stepping beyond the realms of believability, sometimes a whole bunch of crazy shit really does happen all at once, don’t be afraid to write it that way.

Write on!


Have you ever noticed how supposedly impartial news articles are utterly biased? I don’t read newspapers, haven’t done for years. They are generally filled with hateful opinion pieces that contain very little actual news. I occasionally catch up on what’s going on in the outside world by glancing at the BBC, but even they have their fair share of agenda pushing claptrap.

You know the one that really gets to me? When they say ‘Government U-turn on issue X’. It’s sensationalism at its best. If you look at it from a sensible point of view, what they are saying is, the Government originally had idea X, they looked into it and decided that it was not feasible nor cost effective in reality and therefore no longer wish to pursue it. That is how I would expect the Government to act. To blindly push on with your ideas without regard to their usefulness nor effect on others is how dictatorships are born. However a headline of ‘Government acts in a reasonable manner on issue X’ won’t make sales.

This use of language to twist how an idea is presented is utterly relevant to writers. The way we tell the story directly reflects our opinion of it and is how we try to guide our readers opinion. If we were to write in an entirely impartial and unbiased manner the work would read as though it were written by a robot. I think it’s important to consider the meaning between the lines of your work and how it presents to others. This way you know who you are likely to attract as a reader (i.e. someone of like mind to you) and who you are likely to repel.

Let’s say you have a character of ‘loose virtue’ in your book, if you consistently refer to him/her with negative language or even if you use your other characters to place that negativity onto that character for you, then that is the opinion you are trying to push onto the reader. Consider:

“Aaron is a complete slut, the first thing he does in the morning is trim his man bush to look tidy for whichever female he’s going to boink in the evening”


“Aaron is a free spirit, he loves all kinds of women... frequently”

The difference is subtle but the resulting spin is markedly altered.

So be careful what language you use in your work, it speaks volumes about you the writer, and your characters position on certain subjects and will ultimately project onto the reader in one way or another.


Write on!