C.C. Hogan - Author
I have launched a new podcast telling stories. Some are new adaptations of famous old tales from the Brothers Grimm and many others, some are long forgotten tales, and I hope new tales from new writers. And it has its own website!
Should you have Sex in your Story?
Just about every book has some level of romance in it, even if it simple someone hankering after some romance. But should your story have sex scenes?
Sometimes it seems that there is more and more pressure to put at least a bit of graphic content in books. But are we doing ourselves any favours.
Useful Word Alternatives for Writers
I am often getting stuck on yet another way to describe something that is beautiful or running out of sensible alternatives to "she said" during complicated dialogue.
So, on this page, I am going to collect together some useful lists that I have found to help us all along.
Blogs and Useful Websites
Just thought I would put down some random websites that I have found that I like.
I am avoiding any sites selling self promotion in exchange for giving them money for self promoting themselves. Also, avoiding those selling twitter followers, or anything else which leaves a bad taste in the mouth.
If you think I should list a site, tell me on Twitter by following me or something.
Mapping out your incredible journey
Whether you are writing a fantasy, a city thriller or a personal introspective journey, trying to get the timing of the events right is crucial.
Knowing how long it takes to get from A-B and how long anyone spends in any one place, could effect the weather, their mood, what they see, feel, hear, everything
How fast do they go in my fantasy world?
It is a recurring problem this; how fast is my army, wagon, horse, dragon, bloke on foot going to travel across my land in my story?
In fantasy, of course, they can travel any speed you like with a wave of a wand. But what happens if we want to make it a little closer to real life? Well, research time!
Fantasy Recipe: Mutton Stew
This is the first in a very occasional series of recipes that might fit in with your fantasy tavern.
This one is a basic stew than can be made with mutton or beef, cooks slowly all morning and can be kept warm over the fire for the landlady to serve up with bread
Do you cuddle up to your characters?
Write about what you know about. This is the first bit of advice anyone gets when they first start trying to write a book. But does that mean write about the commute into town? Or perhaps the type of school you went to? Maybe about how you learned to drive?
For me, the real advice is to write about WHO you know about.
Indulging in the wonderful 1970s
I have written a book called The Stink. It is set in North London during the long hot summer of 1976 and tells the story of a group of sixteen year olds who have finished school and are trying to start a band.
Really, it has just been an excuse to write about the era I was brought up in and I had a lot of fun writing it. It has yet to find a home, but for fun, or idiocy, I thought I would post the first chapter.
Paint Your Dragon
What is the difference between a mythical creature and any other invented creature?
This deep philosophical problem is possibly more important to the reader and the author than either might necessary realise. It might govern whether the creature can walk or not, can talk or not or even just survive.
The Perfect Tavern in a Fantasy World
I have realised that every time my characters wander into a tavern or inn that the first thing they ask is what is there to eat.
Now this probably says a lot more about me than it does about them, but I have also begun to think that perhaps the taverns that I invent are the ones I myself would like to visit.
Don't forget to let your characters be Silly
It is pretty common for any of us to be accused of taking life too seriously sometimes. Well the same can be true or our stories and especially our characters. Sometimes people can be just plain silly and that applies whether they are a little girl, a teenage bloke, a mass murderer or a Methodist. All right, maybe not always the last one, but most people, okay?
The question for the author is are they brave enough to allow their characters to be people?
Does Your Dragon Wear Clothes?
There are two sorts of dragon in fiction, broadly speaking; dumb beasts that screech and have an orc sitting on top of them and eat princesses and ones with interesting senses of humour voiced by such luminaries as Sean Connery and Sir John Hurt.
But if a dragon is an intelligent, well spoken and such literate fellow, why would they be running around in the nude and living in damp nasty caves?
Dealing with Ancient Characters
I love getting under the skin of a character for the first time, seeing how they think, how they react, what private thoughts they have, even where they are ticklish. I know Fantasy is meant to be about huge magical explosions, dark, mysterious thoughts, and rooms lit only with candle light and strange blue auras, but actually, I am far more interested in how the people wrapped up in the world think when they cut their finger, go for a piss, see a girl/boy/dragon that they fancy, or celebrate the big five-oh-oh!
Deep in the Dark Forest
Keep up with my Podcast
Series One & Two are out now!
Start series one with Dirt for Free, and start reading the brand new series two with Girls of Dirt for only 99p!
Girls of Dirt includes a recap of series one.
The Stink Is Here
North London, 1976. The longest, hottest summer on record. The water is running out and the kids hate their parents. Which bunch of idiots would think it is a good idea to start a band?