Surprise

We struggled this week with “the big reveal”: the completely out-of-the-blue plot twist. Does the shock take the reader out of the story? Does it improve the plot? Does it change a “routine” experience into a memorable one for all the right reasons? Thoroughly spoiled: “The Crying Game” and “Murder on the Orient Express.” WeContinue reading “Surprise”

Almost Over

Our 99th podcast, and we’re almost done with another cycle of writing-editing-publishing a book with “From Tundra to Tiara” being released tomorrow, Monday, January 9. We talk at length about what we learned from our collaborative effort in writing a book, along with the challenges of contrasting writing styles and the English language itself. WeContinue reading “Almost Over”

FTTT: Chapter One

As promised, here we are, reading the first chapter of your future favorite Netflix/Hallmark cozy romantic movie. Well, we can hope, anyway. The first two chapters of “From Tundra to Tiara” are posted, so feel free to follow along as we read. We also chat about good and bad holiday movies, and we pick ourContinue reading “FTTT: Chapter One”

Writing Your Space Epic

Jam-packed podcast where we talked about my completed space epic and how it differs from three eponymous sci-fi adventures. Lots of talks about techno-babble and characters. If you’re writing an epic, or considering writing one, here are some great ideas. Also: Two free chapters from our latest release, “From Tundra to Tiara,” hitting the shelvesContinue reading “Writing Your Space Epic”

What Did You Say?

Writing believable dialogue is one of the biggest challenges in prose because “dialogue is character,” and characters are what drive our books. We discuss dialogue at length with examples from famous movies, and we provide ideas on how to improve your own written dialogue (spoiler: “listen”). We bring you up to speed on our ownContinue reading “What Did You Say?”

Writing for the Holidays

Flickr image made available from Steve McFarland via Creative Commons. We chat about writing about the holidays, why Hollywood keep making holiday movies, and why people keep watching them. Themes include family, winter, and love. Minor spoilers of Love Hard, Die Hard, A Christmas Carol, and other holiday classics. And we don’t make the rules.Continue reading “Writing for the Holidays”

Writing about Politics

Writing about politics can be rewarding and challenging, but it’s easy to get lost in the weeds. CC and I give you ideas about how to focus on the story at hand without going too far off track. We talk about our current works in progress, Nanowrimo, graphic design, and the upcoming holidays. Pretty goodContinue reading “Writing about Politics”

Alien

In space no one can hear you scream. Welcome to the Halloween 2022 Podcast, and we pick what we feel is the iconic horror film of the genre: Alien! We thoroughly spoil this 1979 classic that pushes back on all (well, most) of the clichés, and we explain why we feel this is mandatory viewingContinue reading “Alien”

Who Are We?

“Helping Writers Write” CC and I are sneaking up on one hundred podcasts since we started “The Amateur Hour” in 2021, and we should reintroduce ourselves with a list of our popular podcasts. Cassidy Carson and JT Hume are parents, grandparents, and independent writers who podcast, and we’ve got a few books between us. We’veContinue reading “Who Are We?”

Comedy is Hard

Welcome to the podcast where we misquote actor Edwin Guinn and others when we say, “Life is easy. Comedy is hard.” We discuss our mutual work in progress (WIP), and we agree that while we got the “Rom” part right, we misfired on the “Com” part. How did that happen? And what can we doContinue reading “Comedy is Hard”

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