Category Archives: Real Life Writing

The Anti-Masterclass: Learning to Write by Slogging Through the Mud and Taking No Shortcuts | Fiction School Podcast Season 5 Episode 4

The Anti-Masterclass: Learning to Write by Slogging Through the Mud and Taking No Shortcuts | Fiction School Podcast Season 5 Episode 4

Friends, we’re here to preach a little hard truth. Some people–famous writers, even–want you to think there are shortcuts. James Patterson has been using Facebook to advertise his $90 MasterClass called something dumb and inviting like “Learn to Write a Bestseller”. The class might teach you a lot, but it might also be a waste… Continue Reading

Rust Never Sleeps: Getting Back to Writing After a Long Hiatus | Fiction School Podcast Season 5 Episode 1

Rust Never Sleeps: Getting Back to Writing After a Long Hiatus | Fiction School Podcast Season 5 Episode 1

Hey, you. Yes. YOU. You should enter Fiction School’s first annual writing contest! It’s the 2016 FICTION OPEN! The winning story gets published in Razor Lit Mag (where Baker is the Editor, so you know it’s cool) and the author will be a special guest on an upcoming episode of Fiction School. There’s a small… Continue Reading

World Building and the Myth of Prewriting | Fiction School Podcast #45

World Building and the Myth of Prewriting | Fiction School Podcast #45

Here are things that Tommy Zurhellen doesn’t believe in: Santa Claus. The Bermuda Triangle. The Ghost of Bear Bryant. And…prewriting. That’s right, ‘Schoolers.  There’s no such thing as prewriting, and there’s no such thing as preheating your oven.  Everything you do is actually writing, in one vague form or another, according to TZ. Which is… Continue Reading

Getting Writing Done When You’re In a Life Jam | Fiction School Podcast #43

Getting Writing Done When You’re In a Life Jam | Fiction School Podcast #43

Hey there–long time no see…er, hear.  Yeah, the irreverent professors of Fiction School have been a bit erstwhile with our podcast of late. But we’ve got good reasons, y’all.  We’re busy putting out books and getting famous and drinking margaritas on the beach like the rockstar authors we are.  Yeah, totally.  That. Really, we’re just… Continue Reading

Celebrate DRAGON DAY! Shameless Self-Promotion for Writers | Fiction School Podcast #42

Celebrate DRAGON DAY! Shameless Self-Promotion for Writers | Fiction School Podcast #42

It’s hard to come up with an idea for a story or novel, and it’s hard to write it, and it’s hard to edit it.  But what might be the hardest thing? Getting people to pay attention to your writing. This week, we’re talking about shameless self-promotion, and Tommy Zurhellen’s diabolical plan to Own The… Continue Reading

Reading Your Work to Strangers and Promoting Your Fiction | Fiction School Podcast #39

Reading Your Work to Strangers and Promoting Your Fiction | Fiction School Podcast #39

One magical summer, two writers who’d been friends forever decided to raise a little hell.  They piled boxes of books, some camping gear, a few changes of clothes, and a cooler full of sauerkraut and beer into the back of a Camry.  They hit the open road, reading their fiction to anybody who’d listen. It… Continue Reading

To MFA or Not? The Back-To-School Special | Fiction School Podcast #36

To MFA or Not? The Back-To-School Special | Fiction School Podcast #36

So, we took the summer off.  We’re sorry.  No, we’re not–it was GREAT–but it’s also great to be back.  Thanks for your emails asking us if we were still alive, still friends, still podcasting.  Yes, yes, and yes. To kick off Season Two as we go back to school, we talk about going back to… Continue Reading

How Writing Retreats Can Grow Your Career | Fiction School Podcast #35

How Writing Retreats Can Grow Your Career | Fiction School Podcast #35

Sometimes there are just too many dishes in the sink to get that line of dialogue right. The TV is too loud to make that first sentence sing, you know? Real life. It gets in the way of Fictionland all too often. But what if you want to get away from real life and crank… Continue Reading

Writing Every Day, or Not, and How To Get Back in the Saddle After Not Writing | Fiction School Podcast #32

Writing Every Day, or Not, and How To Get Back in the Saddle After Not Writing | Fiction School Podcast #32

Weeeee’re baaaaaaaack… Actually…we never really went away.  We just got crazy busy, all three of us, with end-of-semester duties and grading and that kind of thing.  ‘Tis the life of the prof. Our unplanned hiatus inspired us to talk about how writers sometimes get interrupted and can’t write for long chunks of time.  It sucks.… Continue Reading

How To Revise a Big Ol’ Book-Length Project: Advice From Over a Dozen Writers | Fiction School Podcast #25

How To Revise a Big Ol’ Book-Length Project: Advice From Over a Dozen Writers | Fiction School Podcast #25

Sometimes, you just can’t stop the good times from rollin’.  Like this week, many special things happened.  First, Tommy’s pleading and begging for all these weeks finally came into fruition.  It happened.   We. Got. A. Voicemail. It was a great question from a listener, Joseph, and we knew we wanted to do a show… Continue Reading