Is Our Writers Learning: The Condensed View

If I had to pick one thing I’d learned from each of the books I studied this year, here’s what I’d go for:
Alif the Unseen: A really great setting is a huge asset to a book.
Midnight Blue-Light Special: If you’re going to have characters spend half the book freaking out that the terrifyingly deadly bad guys are coming, the bad guys do, indeed, have to be terrifying and deadly to make it work.
The Placebo Effect: It’s possible to write a shitty book and get it published.
Gideon’s Angel: A historical fantasy doesn’t have to drown in info-dumping.
Cold Days: Making a book work as both part of a grand arc and as its own chapter is difficult, but doable.
Twelfth Enchantment: It’s possible to have a woman lead in a historical fantasy who kicks butt while staying a product of her society and era.
Quintessence: There’s still a market for historical fantasy that isn’t steampunk.
The Shambling Guide to New York City: If your story wrecks your series premise, wreck it and take things in a new direction—don’t force it to conform.
Babayaga: Long internal monologues, particularly when they’re retrospective about someone’s life, should all be cut.
Thieftaker: Lots of research really helps.
Libriomancer: If your character refers to things that happened before the start of the book, it needs to be either brief or clearly explained, depending how important it is.
That’s only 11 as I’m behind for the year. Nos. 12 and 13 will come in January.

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