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The Genre Hustle

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The Genre Hustle

Lucy Caird, Anton Howard, Karter Mycroft, Jane Pinckard, A.P. Thayer, Chelsea Thompson, and Christopher Zerby

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Welcome to Genre Hustle, your virtual Sci-fi and Fantasy Writing Group. We talk about craft, tropes, publishing, making money by writing, and more. If you’re a writer or reader of speculative fiction, join the conversation and learn with us!
 
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In this week's episode, Maureen McHugh joins us and we do a deep dive into her short story, "Under the Hill," in which the question 'What if there were fey at my college?' is answered. We get into how Maureen came up with the story, what inspired her, and what she was hoping to accomplish with the story before jumping into the craft of her choice i…
 
This week is all about short fiction. With standard word counts for short stories decreasing, real estate is extremely important. How do you deliver a satisfying character arc and the right balance of plot and world building and keep it under 7,500 words? Deciding what to leave out is as important as deciding which details to maintain, or how close…
 
It’s Karter’s Big Episode! Inspired by Farah Mendlesohn’s Rhetorics of Fantasy, the Genre Hustle crew discusses how elements of the fantastic function for us as writers, the challenges and opportunities of each, and the perspective each can offer the reader.We explore the four modes of speculative fiction: portal, immersive, intrusion, and liminal.…
 
It’s care and feeding week at the Genre Hustle! Are you overwhelmed by a harsh inner critic? Uneven writing habits? Staying up until three in the morning? A growing pile of empty wine bottles? Or even… the dreaded writer’s block? These are just a few examples of the problems writers face on a daily basis as we go about the business of being creativ…
 
This week we talk to our friends Allison Rose and Cody Sisco at Made in LA. We discuss self-publishing, the Los Angeles Festival of Books, what brought Allison and Cody to writing, and the steps it takes to create an anthology that’s attracting talented writers and passionate fans. Allison and Cody met at an independent authors seminar and bonded o…
 
Far-flung galaxies, soaring castles, and fantastical lands: this is what readers crave in science fiction and fantasy. This week, we discuss the many functions of setting in genre fiction. Setting can accent the escapism inherent in sci-fi and fantasy, but it can also reinforce theme, characters, mood, and tension. If you’ve ever heard “show, don’t…
 
Time to get spooky! Guest Erin Brown joins us for a terrifying delve into the abyss of horror. It’s been said that by Robert Bloch that “horror is the removal of masks,” and by Michael A. Arnzen that “horror’s power lies in seduction,” but what does that mean? The Genre Hustle crew discusses how horror slowly strips away the mundane and familiar to…
 
Welcome to Season 3! We’re starting off on the right foot with an episode dedicated to writing goals. Different goals work for different sorts of writers. Maybe you’re like AP and you want to have daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly, and yearly goals (no, we’re not kidding! He’s the master!). Maybe you’re like Lucy, and you want to develop a healthy …
 
In episode 12 of season 2 of the Genre Hustle, the gang talks about writing gripes (again). We had a season of positivity and now it’s time to gripe in our season finale. We cover a broad swath of issues plaguing genre writers in particular, but anyone working in fiction or screenwriting might be guilty of these sins. Interestingly, many of the poi…
 
In episode 11 of season 2, The Genre Hustle discusses how to develop emotional connections in your characters. Go deep with the Genre Hustle crew this week as we discuss emotionally connecting with characters. We weigh everything from inner and outer journeys, creating unique sensory details, unexpected emotional reactions, and even quirky interest…
 
In episode 10 of season 2, The Genre Hustle answers the question, "I wrote a draft, now what?" The spaghetti draft, the NaNo draft, the exploratory draft… the bad draft. No matter what you call it, you got a novel onto the page, and now it’s editing time! The Genre Hustle crew discusses how to approach the gargantuan task of developing the second d…
 
In episode nine of season two, The Genre Hustle talks about Critique Groups! Don’t write into the vacuum for the rest of your life! Joining (or starting your own!) writers group is the best way to begin leveling up your craft: they’re free, full of like-minded writers, and can be a lot of fun. Don’t let fear or inexperience keep you from getting ou…
 
This week, the Genre Hustle crew tackles midpoint. It gets overshadowed by the more exciting Inciting Incident and Climax, but Midpoint is the tentpole that holds up the middle of your book, and if you do it right, will help double-down on theme, character emotional arcs, and dramatic action all at once. Mentions include VE Schwab, Richard Matheson…
 
In episode seven of season two, we tackle villains, antagonists, anti-heroes and ways to create your own! We make the case for the relatable villain and share the ones who give us the creeps, from dark lords to glamorous socialites. We discuss JRR Tolkien, Susanna Clarke, Justina Ireland, Philip Pullman, and Richard K. Morgan.…
 
In episode 6 of season 2 of The Genre Hustle, the conversation turns to action of all kinds, from lovers’ spats to space battles. We debate when to use action, how to use action to paint a character, and how to add sensory and spatial details. Examples include Rebecca Roanhorse, Jeff VanderMeer, Yoon Ha Lee, Ellen Kushner, Tomi Adeyemi, and JS Mori…
 
Join us for a conversation with professional freelance editor Marissa Vu to learn about when and why to hire an editor, different editorial approaches like developmental, content, and line editing, and commonly seen craft mistakes. We discuss Philip K. Dick and Cassandra Khaw.על ידי Lucy Caird, Anton Howard, Karter Mycroft, Jane Pinckard, A.P. Thayer, Chelsea Thompson, and Christopher Zerby
 
Genre Hustle Podcast, Season Two, Episode Four: Genre. In this episode we talk about what defines genre fiction, and the subgenres of what we focus on here, Speculative Fiction: Sci-Fi, Fantasy, Horror, and we get into some of the fun nitty-gritty sub-subgenres like Hard Sci-Fi, Clockpunk, Space Opera, Military Sci-Fi; and in Fantasy, we’ve got Swo…
 
Part two of the Point-of-View episode. What makes first person POV work? Is second person doomed to awkwardness? And what about mixing and matching different POVs throughout a story? We cover Suzanne Collins, Italo Calvino, Erin Morgenstern, Markus Zusak, and Joe Abercrombie.על ידי Lucy Caird, Anton Howard, Karter Mycroft, Jane Pinckard, A.P. Thayer, Chelsea Thompson, and Christopher Zerby
 
How do you get inside a little creature’s head? Or show the whole world? How does that tell a story? Who’s narrating the story and how are they doing it? Join us as we break down Point of View (POV) and how it impacts the reader’s experience. We discuss Patricia McKillip, Stephen King, Cressida Cowell, and J.R.R. Tolkien.…
 
We talk about what we love when we read: finding a series that ticks all the boxes, getting immersed in an unfamiliar world, chemistry between characters, and fights with pokey sticks!What do you love about reading? We love delving into worlds like Nnedi Okorafor's Lagoon; delicious sexy times in K.J. Charles’s Magpie Lord; and masterful use of lan…
 
That perfect cup of coffee. Setting timers and micro-goals. Locking yourself out of social media. Rubbing crystals together. On this episode, we discuss writing habits with special guest, Dana Hammer, and how to get it done!על ידי Lucy Caird, Anton Howard, Karter Mycroft, Jane Pinckard, A.P. Thayer, Chelsea Thompson, and Christopher Zerby
 
Dig your teeth into Ep.7 of the Genre Hustle where we celebrate the glorious, literary monster. How to create one, what they tell us about ourselves, and why they keep us up at night.על ידי Lucy Caird, Anton Howard, Karter Mycroft, Jane Pinckard, A.P. Thayer, Chelsea Thompson, and Christopher Zerby
 
This week we're talking about the break into Act Two. Join us as we discuss the choices we made in our own work alongside the works of George R. R. Martin, Lev Grossman, and Helene Wecker. Enter the 'upside down' with us!על ידי Lucy Caird, Anton Howard, Karter Mycroft, Jane Pinckard, A.P. Thayer, Chelsea Thompson, and Christopher Zerby
 
In this episode of the Genre Hustle, we talk about magic systems and how to make great ones that serve your story. We compare our own work against that of Neil Gaiman, Brandon Sanderson, and Isaac Asimov.על ידי Lucy Caird, Anton Howard, Karter Mycroft, Jane Pinckard, A.P. Thayer, Chelsea Thompson, and Christopher Zerby
 
Crafting dialogue that does double duty for your story is easier said than done. In this episode, we discuss straightforward approaches to strengthening your scenes with the mighty power of dialogue. Tune in to listen to us talk about our own work and that of Kazuo Ishiguro and Haruki Murakami.על ידי Lucy Caird, Anton Howard, Karter Mycroft, Jane Pinckard, A.P. Thayer, Chelsea Thompson, and Christopher Zerby
 
What makes a memorable protagonist? In this episode, we'll be discussing how to craft dimensional, kick ass protagonists, while comparing our own work to Lois McMaster Bujold, Douglas Adams, and Cressida Cowell.על ידי Lucy Caird, Anton Howard, Karter Mycroft, Jane Pinckard, A.P. Thayer, Chelsea Thompson, and Christopher Zerby
 
The good old inciting incident! On paper, it might seem like the lowly thing that kickstarts the story, but it's so much more than that! Listen to episode 2 of the Genre Hustle, where we dive into this important plot point and discuss some of our own work alongside that of Suzanne Collins and China Mieville.…
 
Join us in our first episode of the Genre Hustle podcast! We're introducing ourselves and discussing first sentences! In this episode we discuss our own work as well as Dashiell Hammet, H.P. Lovecraft, and Neal Stephenson.על ידי Lucy Caird, Anton Howard, Karter Mycroft, Jane Pinckard, A.P. Thayer, Chelsea Thompson, and Christopher Zerby
 
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