History That Never Was

Home of Dawn Vogel: Writer, Historian, Geek

The Timing from Idea to Book

| March 1, 2021

How long does it take between when an author gets an idea for a novel and when it comes out? That depends on a number of factors, including the author and their publication process. But the short answer is “longer than you’d think.” Between Facebook memories and archived emails, I’ve determined that the novel I […]

Revising Short Fiction: On Screen or On Paper?

| February 22, 2021

I learned how to edit my papers for high school and college by printing out drafts, reading through them, and marking them up with red ink (or whatever funky colored pens I had). But that was in the halcyon days of dot matrix printers, which, in the household I grew up, at least, had a […]

Tips on Speculative Detective Fiction

| February 15, 2021

Many people like to read mystery stories or detective fiction, but if you’ve never tried your hand at writing it, it can be a challenging genre to tackle, especially when you add speculative fiction elements. Here, author Tyler Hayes breaks down some of the pitfalls and advice for writing speculative detective fiction. It’s a fantastic […]

Titling a Story

| February 8, 2021

Last week, I talked about starting with a title and writing a story to fit it. This week, I’m looking at something like the opposite: when you’ve got a story, with no ideas for a good title. The first thing to think about when you’re trying to title a story you’ve written is whether it’s […]

Writing to a Title

| February 1, 2021

Many authors find that coming up with a title is considerably harder than writing the story (or book, or poem) that needs the title. However, some authors start with a title and write their story to fit that title. But first, you need a title. The good news is that there are random title generators […]

How Do You Use Your Planner Book?

| January 25, 2021

Some recent house cleaning unearthed a couple of my old planner books, which of course led to me flipping through them and seeing how my planner book use has changed over the years. In 2017, I made detailed lists at the beginning of the week that listed what I planned to get done that week, […]

Poetry Form: Rimas Dissolutas

| January 18, 2021

There’s something of a perception that French forms of poetry are among some of the more difficult forms. However, if you’d like to dip your to into the world of French poetry, the rimas dissolutas form is one that I’ve found a little easier than others. (Weirdly, the name “rimas dissolutas” appears to be Portuguese, […]

Idea Tracking for Authors

| January 11, 2021

If you’re like me, you may often have more ideas than you know what to do with, and not enough time to implement them. But equally important to time for implementation is a method of tracking those ideas that works for you. I keep my ideas in a lot of places: I’ve got a tag […]

Poetry Forms: Magnetic Poetry

| December 21, 2020

Magnetic Poetry certainly isn’t a standard form of poetry, but it’s a fun way to play at writing poetry with possibly very cool results. I’ve had a variety of magnetic poetry sets over the years, but I can’t stick them to my fridge right now, for fear that my cats will remove and literally consume […]

Self Publishing and Covers

| December 14, 2020

When it comes to self-published books, cover art can have a huge impact on your sales. Even though we say “don’t judge a book by its cover,” the truth of the matter is that for many readers looking for a new book, covers are what draws them to a book by an author they’ve never […]