Tag Archives: Shanna Germain

Writing Excuses 8.43: Realistic Melee Fighting with Wesley Chu

Wesley Chu joins Brandon, Mary, Howard, and a live audience at GenCon Indy for a discussion of writing realistic melee fights. Wes has lots of martial arts experience, he learned rope-dart fighting from Scorpion, he has worked as a stunt man, and his latest book, The Deaths of Tao, is out this week!

He talks to us about melee fighting. What sorts of things knock us out (ahem) of the story? How can we realistically portray combat without losing the heroic, incredible edge we want in our story?

Out of Order Episode Moment: Scott Lynch’s episode was mentioned, but has not aired yet. It’s okay. We’ll get to it.

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Write a scene in any world where a pirate actually can beat a ninja.

The Lives of Tao, by Wesley Chu, narrated by Mikael Naramore

Writing Excuses 7.38: Writing Love Scenes

Shanna Germain joins Brandon, Mary, and Howard in front of a live audience at GenCon Indy to talk about writing love scenes. They’re not easy to get right, and they can be even more difficult to talk about it in a way that leaves the Writing Excuses team’s “clean” rating intact.

We cover the ways in which the love scenes must support the story, and the importance of tension in setting those scenes up. Mary asks the question foremost in all our minds: how do you write a sex scene so that it’s not silly? Shanna fields it with aplomb, explaining how she lets the characters drive it, washing unintentional humor out of the scene.

We also talk about how difficult it can be for those writing the POV of the opposite sex to get the head-space details right, and how love scenes fit into the pacing of your work.

What You Missed: Prior to recording this episode, in an effort to get all the nervous giggles and snerky titters worked out of our live audience, Mary read a portion of a recently released Pathfinder novel in her “one-nine-hundred” voice. No, we did not record it. Some things are meant to be loved, then lost.

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Put your characters in a place they cannot escape, and keep them there.

Shanna plugged “One Hot Summer,” but the actual title is One Long Hot Summer. It is not currently available Audible, but it’s available on Amazon at the link above. There are lots of OTHER things on Audible for you to listen to, including four titles featuring Shanna Germain.