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My interview on Self-Publishing Review

I was recently interviewed by Lela Michael for Self-Publishing Review on the use of languages in fantasy.   Interview: Fantasy Author Melissa McPhail on the Use of Languages SELF-PUBLISHING REVIEW: In my SPR review of Cephrael’s Hand, Book One in your series, I labeled it Epic High Fantasy, with Epic referring to a mythology the characters will. . . Read More


The Mysterious Character Syndrome: When a fringe character rears his head and demands mainstream attention

I’m still on this subject of character development. It’s a hot topic among fiction writers—or at least among bloggers, who seem to think it’s a hot topic among fiction writers. In any event, all of the recent posts flying about the blogosphere on the subject have certainly garnered my interest and attention. So I’ve hooked. . . Read More


Exploring Time

Do you ever feel caught out of time?  I had a day recently where I felt I’d skipped out of the time stream followed by the rest of the world.  Like the needle on a record player suddenly dislodged backwards, I wound up running eleven minutes behind everyone else.  I felt constantly as if I. . . Read More


What’s in a Name? Naming Characters in Fantasy Worlds

“What’s in a name? A rose by any other name would smell as sweet.”  So says Juliet in her soliloquy about Romeo. As Shakespeare points out, names are a combination of symbols, associated with sounds, which are assigned to represent a person or thing in our minds. Often times in life, the superficiality of a name. . . Read More


The Lie

I was reading an article recently by Sherrinda Ketchersid on The Writers Alley Blog, where she introduces the concept of The Lie. Sherrinda wrote: “Character development hinges on The Lie. You see, your hero needs to overcome something in his life. There needs to be some lie he believes that taints every part of his belief system, every action, and. . . Read More