What ‘Write What You Know’ Really Means

If you haven’t already checked out my new writing advice website, where I post weekly articles, please do! Here’s an article from it to wet your appetite.

Jed Herne: Writer

Like ‘Show, don’t tell’ (a hypocritically telling phrase in itself), the ‘Write What You Know’ mantra is often thrown around with no explanation.

So what does it mean? Does it mean you can only write about your own experiences? Does it mean your story should be an autobiography? Does it mean you can’t have a female narrator if you’re a male writer?

Nope. ‘Write What You Know’ isn’t about limitations. It’s not there to stop you writing cool stuff. It’s there to make your writing more realistic. Because ‘Write What You Know’ really means: ‘Write What You’ve Felt.’

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New Writing Advice Blog

Hey there!

I’ve created a new writing advice blog.  On it, I’ll post concise-ish and often snarky writing advice every week or every 7 days (whichever comes first). Your literary enjoyment may vary!

I’ve thought about doing this for quite some time. If you’ve been following this blog for a while, you’ll have seen me dabbling in writing advice articles from time to time, and now I’ve decided that I’d like to make a habit of it. I’ll most likely be migrating the chapters of my novel to this new website.

Check it out here and be sure to follow the new blog for weekly posts!


The Half-Blood Prince Guide to Question Arcs

Yesterday I announced one of my writing articles would soon be appearing on the Better Novel Project. Today, it’s been published on the site! Check it out here. Here’s a short excerpt:


A question arc in your novel can help build suspense:

Suspense: a state or condition of mental uncertainty or excitement, as in awaiting a decision or outcome, accompanied by apprehension or anxiety.

The desire to know the answers to riddles or mysteries will keep many readers hooked.  Let’s look at how a question arc captivates readers in Harry Potter & the Half-Blood Prince. 

Read the Full Article

The Half-Blood Prince Guide to Question Arcs – Soon to be Published Article!

Hey all! Just a quick note to say that an article, written by me, will appear on the Better Novel Project tomorrow. BNP is a a website that deconstructs popular novels like Harry Potter and The Hunger Games to discover common elements. It then explains how to use those elements to create a great story structure. If you’re interested in what makes a best-seller tick, go check it out!

In the article, I’ll be looking at how you can use a Question Arc to create suspense and captivate readers, looking at Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince to see how Question Arcs can be done well. Will link to the article as soon as it’s published!

New Theme & Layout

I’ve used the same theme for this blog ever since I first started it – the default (albeit slightly customised) TwentyFourteen. So, today I’ve changed the theme and added a few new touches. I feel that the larger font makes reading easier, and that the new header image has a more professional, mysterious and interesting appearance than before. But that’s enough from me – I’m not the only one who reads this thing! I hope …

What are your thoughts on the new theme? Does it make it easier to read the sample chapters? Do you prefer the new header images? How about the readability of the font? I’d love to know your thoughts.

Concept Images – Part 2

Concept images of Belpo (the main city of The Aeon Academy) and its surrounds, part two:

Belpo City

The view from a busy road during night-time in Belpo.

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Concept Images – Part 1

Concept images of Belpo (the main city of The Aeon Academy) and its surrounds:

A Belpo City Train Station, somewhere towards the outskirts of the city.

A Belpo City Train Station, somewhere towards the outskirts of the city.

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2014 in review

The WordPress.com helper monkeys prepared a 2014 annual report for this blog. Thanks for all your support and views throughout the year!

Here’s an excerpt:

A San Francisco cable car holds 60 people. This blog was viewed about 1,500 times in 2014. If it were a cable car, it would take about 25 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.

Life’s Greatest Glory

“The greatest glory in living lies not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall.” – Nelson Mandela

Gretel and Hansel

Gretel and Hansel is a subversive short story I wrote midway through last year. Recently, I did a little bit of editing, cutting down the story to under 1500 words to make it eligible for a short story competition. This story has also been published on Aubade Rising, as well as Protagonize. If you find any typos in the story, or think of anything I could do to improve it, don’t hesitate to tell me :). Hope you enjoy!

Gretel and Hansel are two poor children living in the midst of a busy, dark and dangerous city. They live with their father and their stepmother, who has nothing but contempt for them. So when she takes them out for a family outing, the two children know that something’s amiss.

A subversive take on the traditional Grimm brothers’ story.

Gretel and Hansel Front Cover

Gretel and Hansel

Jed H

There were a lot of things in Emergan that could wake you up in the middle of the cold, snowy night. If it wasn’t a police siren or gunfire, it was the soft, graceful shattering of distant glass or the sound of squealing tires close by. Tonight, though, it was the sound of their parents arguing that woke fourteen year-old twins Hansel and Gretel from a deep slumber. Continue reading