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Shadows Beneath: The Writing Excuses…

Shadows Beneath: The Writing Excuses Anthology

by Peter Ahlstrom (Editor)

Other authors: Julie Dillon (Cover artist), Mary Robinette Kowal (Contributor), Brandon Sanderson (Contributor), Howard Tayler (Contributor), Dan Wells (Contributor)

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This is a collection of short fiction from four well-established speculative fiction authors (Brandon Sanderson, Mary Robinette Kowal, Dan Wells, and Howard Tayler). However, it also includes the first drafts of each of the stories and information about how the authors fixed the problems that were in their first drafts.

If you like good speculative fiction, you can read this book just for the good stories.

If you're a fan of the Writing Excuses podcast, you'll want to read this book as a follow-up to the discussions about these stories that they featured on the podcast.

If you're a writer or an aspiring writer, you can read this book to see how some of the best contemporary writers make their writing even better (or to reassure yourself that even really strong writers start out with problematic first drafts). ( )
  Katya0133 | Sep 9, 2016 |
I find it difficult to praise this book enough, but I will do my best.

This anthology is a short one, only four stories, but the quality is of the highest caliber. If all I had gotten were these four stories, then I would have considered myself lucky to have read them. But there's more.

Along with each story is the story behind the story -- a brainstorming session, critique notes, multiple drafts marked up with final changes. In short, a treasure trove of information for the inspiring writer.

It is the literary equivalent of one of those step-by-step art books, which show not only the finished painting but all of the steps that it took to get there. By the end, I felt that writing stories of this quality was not a distant dream for me, but something achievable through hard work and careful revision.

I already knew Brandon Sanderson's writing, but the other authors sincerely impressed me as well. I look forward to exploring their writing as well. ( )
1 vote shabacus | Sep 21, 2015 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Ahlstrom, PeterEditorprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Dillon, JulieCover artistsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Kowal, Mary RobinetteContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Sanderson, BrandonContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Tayler, HowardContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Wells, DanContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
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