Big Idea Category

The Big Idea: Michael R. Underwood

For his Big Idea for Annihilation Aria, author Michael R. Underwood is examining the part of the story that usually gets skipped over — unfairly so, in Underwood’s opinion. MICHAEL R. UNDERWOOD: “Happily Ever After.” A famous phrase that signals the end of many stories, from faerie tales to action movies to romance novels. Growing […]

Read More

The Big Idea: Madeline Ashby

In today’s Big Idea, Madeline Ashby is talking about monsters, what they might mean to each of us, and what hers in particular meant to her latest novel, ReV. MADELINE ASHBY: “It’s a rape revenge story? Is that what you said?” It was October of 2016. It was a rainy morning in London just days […]

Read More

The Big Idea: Kenneth Schneyer

As he begins his Big Idea for his collection Anthems Outside Time and Other Strange Voices, author Kenneth Schneyer will ask you to think of a certain sort of writing perhaps differently than you do now. Don’t worry, he explains himself as he goes along. KENNETH SCHNEYER: A story is not an action by a […]

Read More

The Big Idea: Tiffani Angus

Time travel — and horticulture? The two entwine in Threading the Labyrinth, the new novel from Tiffani Angus. How did the author cultivate these two into a single novel? The answer awaits you below. TIFFANI ANGUS: The big idea behind Threading the Labyrinth started in a garden. Well, it started with a garden. Okay, to […]

Read More

The Big Idea: Steven H. Silver

Steven H. Silver knows just a bit about alternate histories: He created a well-respected genre award for stories in that subgenre. Now he’s trying his hand at writing an alternate history: After Hastings. Where does his history take a fictional turn, and why? He’s here to tell you. STEVEN H. SILVER: While in grad school, […]

Read More

The Big Idea: Catherine Asaro

Finally! An author brave enough to give an answer to The Question all writers get! The author: Catherine Asaro. Her newest book: The Vanished Seas. Her answer? Read on! CATHERINE ASARO: “Where do you get your ideas?” The dreaded question. It’s also a good one, deserving a good answer. Unfortunately, I never have a good […]

Read More

The Big Idea: Sarah Henning

From the title alone, The Princess Will Save You suggests there will be some trope-flipping involved in the story. But as author Sarah Henning explains in today’s Big Idea, flipping the trope isn’t enough. There has to be more. SARAH HENNING: The Princess Will Save You is the story of Princess Amarande of Ardenia, whose […]

Read More

The Big Idea: C.T. Rwizi

Many authors have learned that just because a character comes out of your own head doesn’t mean they won’t fight you from time to time. Author C.T. Rwizi learned this very thing while writing Scarlet Odyssey. The details await you below. C.T. RWIZI: The big idea behind Scarlet Odyssey begins at my little sister’s preschool […]

Read More

The Big Idea: Alma Alexander

In this week’s Big Idea for The Second Star, author Alma Alexander goes big… and then gets small… and then tells how it’s all connected. ALMA ALEXANDER: There isn’t just one Big Idea in The Second Star – there are half a dozen of them, interwoven into a complex story tapestry. This is at once […]

Read More

The Big Idea: Dorothy A. Winsor

If you think creating a new world for your fiction means you’ve left behind the troubles of this one, you may be right — but now you have to think about the troubles of the new world, and what they mean for your characters. Dorothy A. Winsor have some thoughts about new worlds and their […]

Read More

The Big Idea: Max Booth III

Unusually, today’s Big Idea starts with an author’s note before the main body of the Big Idea piece. As you read, however, I think you’ll see why author Max Booth III thought it important to put it in, and why some aspects of his new novel Touch the Night are almost eerily in sync with […]

Read More

The Big Idea: Paris Wynters

For Issued, author Paris Wynters looked at marriage and the military, and a speculative way at combining the two of them to create her story. PARIS WYNTERS: Writing has always been a way for me to express myself creatively. Ask me to draw, you’ll get stick figures. Color, not so great at that either even […]

Read More

The Big Idea: Doug Engstrom

Doug Engstrom is thinking about today’s troubles and woes, and how some of them rely on people one thing and corporations… doing another. From there it’s just a hop, skip and jump to the world of his new novel, Corporate Gunslinger. DOUG ENGSTROM: One of the things that’s appalled me as I’ve grown older isn’t […]

Read More

The Big Idea: Ryk Spoor

When thinking about epic fantasy, how epic is epic enough? And at what point might things become too epic for a single band of heroes? Author Ryk Spoor has opinions on these questions, and how they helped to inform his latest (epic!) novel, The Mask of Ares. RYK SPOOR: Epic fantasy has a lot of […]

Read More

The Big Idea: John P. Murphy

The creative advantages to anger: Are there any at all, ever? John P. Murphy says… perhaps! And explains how they were put to work in his novel Red Noise. JOHN P. MURPHY: Red Noise is about anger. I wrote it in 2017, at a time when a lot of us were angry for good reasons. […]

Read More

The Big Idea: A.J. Fitzwater

In today’s Big Idea for their novel No Man’s Land, author A.J. Fitzwater gives a good example why it’s a good idea to support local businesses: because you may find something there that opens a lost world to you. A.J. FITZWATER: Books talk. Within a moment, across the years, decades, centuries. They speak to each […]

Read More

The Big Idea: C. S. E. Cooney, Jessica P. Wick, Amanda J. McGee, Mike Allen

This Big Idea post for the collection A Sinister Quartet represents an actual record: The largest number of authors co-writing a single Big Idea piece. I’m going to get out of the way here and let them do their thing. CSE COONEY, JESSICA P. WICK, AMANDA J. McGEE, MIKE ALLEN: A Sinister Quartet pays tribute […]

Read More

The Big Idea: Tim Major

When you have kids, it can really mess with your focus and ability to do things. But can it also be an inspiration? Ask Tim Major, who in this Big Idea for his novel Hope Island, has some thoughts on this very subject. TIM MAJOR: Probably, all new parents are entirely preoccupied with the act […]

Read More

The Big Idea: Kester Grant

A dash of history, a pinch of literary invention, and a soupçon of imagination — all of these combine in The Court of Miracles to create author Kester Grant’s new novel. She’s here now to tell you how all these ingredients came together. KESTER GRANT: As I left the cinema after seeing Disney’s latest Jungle […]

Read More

%d bloggers like this: