Q&A: Recap

This is going to be a little different. We’ve got three questions that are all asking for things we’ve already written, so, I’m going to compile some links.

Do you have any resources(websites, posts, blogs, etc.) for newer action writers? I’ve been a fantasy/romance/lgbtqa+ writer for some time now and just got into the genre, and I was hoping to get better at writing fight scenes since I, to be frank about it, am rubbish at it.

This might seem a bit glib or egocentric (especially if you’re viewing this on the website, instead of though Tumblr), but HowToFightWrite.com already has that. I realize that it can be a pain to search old posts on Tumblr. I’ve been digging through our archives as part of project recently and been living with the limitations of the system, so you have my sympathies. Tumblr was not designed around the idea that blogs would still be running seven years later, and it shows.

The first post Michi ever published here might be a good place to start. (And, yes, that’s the Tumblr link. The website link is here, if you prefer.)

There’s a lot of basic primers we covered in the early days, that we’ve never, really, revisited.

It’s also important to remember that the only way you’ll get better at writing is through practice. Try it. Experiment. See what works for you.

As always, one of my highest recommendations for violence in prose is the original Conan stories by Robert E. Howard. Howard was an exceptional writer, though he doesn’t get a lot of recognition today. It’s easy to look at the version of Conan that exists in the Pop Culture gestalt, and miss how well written the original material was.

Personally, I’m fond of this collection from the early 2000s, but Conan is in the public domain, so you can find (at least some of) the short stories on Project Gutenberg if that’s your preference.

I realize you weren’t looking for fantasy, but this does carry over.

Also, in your defense, I realize we field a lot of fantasy and science fiction questions. It feels like that’s been especially true this year. But, we do cover contemporary violence, and if there’s something specific you’d like help with, we’d be happy to respond in more detail.

Resources for characters who wield guns, knives, and their mind?

Quite a bit.

Michi’s knife fighting primer had some formatting issues (it’s something we’ve been dealing with), so I just cleaned it up. You can find, Knife Fighting Do’s and Don’ts here, freshly scrubbed of weird line breaks.

For firearms we had someone asking about Gun Tropes earlier this year. There is a larger Firearms tag, and that probably has the information you want. It’s one of our more consistent tags, and dates back to 2013. I’ll be honest, simply asking, “about guns,” is a little tricky because it is a very expansive field.

Just tips for writing action and fight scenes in general. Guns and throwing knives are my biggest issue. Thanks for the seconds it took to read this.


Having just cited our fireams reference, the one thing that’s left are throwing knives.

Rachel Haimowitz reblogged one of Michi’s posts back in 2013 with some additional insights on throwing knives: You can find her thoughts here.

I hope this helps people. We’re working on a long term solution for making that old content more accessible, but it’s been slow going, and we’re not ready to make a formal announcement on that. The last couple months… or, hell, this entire year has been extremely stressful, and I’m sorry we haven’t been as consistent recently.


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