How to Write a Timeless Story, According to Fairy Tales (or: a Lengthy Post About Why Stories Don’t Need to be Lengthy)

What makes a story timeless? Is it the characters that remain identifiable, for anyone anywhere? Is it the enduring themes that deal with moving human truths? Is it iconic images that remained inked into the consciousness of each passing generation? And at what point  – what age must a story have – for it to be declared officially “timeless?” Who decides? There are a lot … Continue reading How to Write a Timeless Story, According to Fairy Tales (or: a Lengthy Post About Why Stories Don’t Need to be Lengthy)

“A Quiet Place”: Scares, Sacrifice, and the Terror of Silence

What if the sounds you made could kill you? That’s the premise for the film that came out just last week, A Quiet Place – in John Krasinski’s scintillating and terrifying directorial debut film, sounds are deadly and all daily tasks (shopping, eating, speaking) become potentially lethal. I had the wonderful opportunity of seeing it with a friend just now before sitting down to write … Continue reading “A Quiet Place”: Scares, Sacrifice, and the Terror of Silence

Historical Figures Who Need Their Own Novels Right Away

Historical fiction is so much fun to read. It can be informative but also compelling at the same time. Some of the most important aspects of a story – a gripping tale, a timeless quality, and realistic characters – are guaranteed by the fact that it is already deemed important enough to be talked about today. So much incredible historical fiction has been written about … Continue reading Historical Figures Who Need Their Own Novels Right Away

Portraits that Look Away

There’s something really intriguing about a painting where the subject doesn’t look you in the eye. They’re looking at something more significant, some other object that you may or may not be able to see. Perhaps it’s something unimportant, something their eyes locked on when they were lost in thought. Perhaps it’s something impossibly magnificent that lies just out of your own eyesight. But whatever … Continue reading Portraits that Look Away

Happy 262nd Birthday, Wolfgang

January 27 marks the birthday of my favorite composer – Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. Originally I had planned to do something funny for this blog (he would have approved), or a collection of some of my favorite pieces (it would have stretched to over a hundred unfortunately), or maybe some trite little factual thing about him. Instead, I’ll do something a little more from the heart, … Continue reading Happy 262nd Birthday, Wolfgang