Last week, we explored the Poisson distribution as a possible distribution of sentence lengths. If you look at the figure for Hunter Crackdown, the Poisson seems reasonable, but it breaks down when looking at other works. In this post, I'd like to go back and try to derive a distribution that has the same qualitative features as the distributions we saw for each of the works. Then, I want to discuss a bit what we might want to do next.
Continue Reading Narrative Statistics: Revisiting Sentence Length Statistics and What to Do Next
Thursdays are my research days. I have a couple things cooking away that I'm not quite ready to write about yet, but I want to take a little time today to explore something that I plan on doing a lot more once my cooking is done.
I'm interested in studying narrative as a dynamic system. That is, there are several variables at play that determine the direction of a narrative. There are plot dynamics, character dynamics, and thematics that an author plays with to construct the story. They all interact in complex ways. A particular plot might require certain type of characters. A particular character might not fit certain types of plots. Some plots and characters don't illustrate well certain themes. The author has to select the right plots, characters, and themes (and write well) for the reader to enjoy the story.
Continue Reading Narrative Statistics: Figuring Out a Distribution of Words in Sentences
I'll say right off that I don't know how to create a great book cover. What I want to explore in this post is my thinking behind the evolving cover for my first novel, Of Fish and Swimming Swords.
When self-publishing, you have to provide covers for each of the formats you're publishing. If an electronic edition, you'll need the equivalent of a front cover. If going with a POD edition, you'll need the front, spine, and back of the cover. Usually, you want the electronic cover to be a version of the POD cover. For my covers, I'm using Inkscape for vector drawing and the GIMP for final composition and effects. Both are free, open source applications that have versions for Microsoft Windows, OS X, and most UNIX/Linux distributions.
Continue Reading Creating a Book Cover