Brain Science for Writers Roundup 7/28/15

Jammu (North India) (396151962).jpg

"Jammu (North India) (396151962)" by Steve Evans from Citizen of the World - Jammu (North India)
Uploaded by russavia. Licensed under CC BY 2.0 via Wikimedia Commons.

Livia's Pick: What your smile says about where you’re from

Livia's Pick: Shining a light on why sensory metaphors are so popular

Everything Science Knows About Reading On Screens via Passive Guy

The experiences of adults with "selective mutism", in their own words

Is sexism the reason why so many heterosexual men are prejudiced towards gay men?

Companies are more successful when their employees feel young for their age

Free will inside the Nazi death camps

Does the Justice System Neglect Forgiveness?

Fixing the Problem of Liberal Bias in Social Psychology. A reminder that all researchers have their biases.

Black victims of violent crimes aren’t treated any better by the system than Black defendants …

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Brain Science for Writers 7/21/15

"Kapseln" by user:Würfel - Own work. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons.

Featured: The Problem of Artificial Willpower. Really interesting philosophical questions...

Featured: Being A Better Online Reader

Just two questions predict how well a pilot will handle an emergency. I wonder how much of the self reported scores is reflective of confidence vs. actual ability.

Saving For Retirement — As Simple As Counting in Days

The scaremongers were wrong: Metalheads from the 80s are thriving. Yeah, but I wonder how they do on hearing tests.

Brain wave study shows how different teaching methods affect reading development

Our jumpiness at nighttime is not just because it's dark. Keep time of day in mind as a tool for creating atmosphere.

I bought a house that is simply too big and now I have to hire a cleaning service… The humble brag is now an area of scientific inquiry.

What Your Pet Reveals about You

How Smart Should the President Be?

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Brain Science for Writers 7/14/15

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"IPhone at Macworld (angled view)". Licensed under CC BY 2.0 via Wikimedia Commons.

 Brain science for writers is a roundup of neuroscience and psychology articles of interest to writers.

Top Pick: The Must-Have Effect: When an Upgrade is Available, People Tend to Break What They'd Like to Replace. I love how we make up stories to justify our behavior.

Fiction writers’ perspective-taking no better than other people’s. Interesting, though I'm holding out hope that there's a test out there that will find a difference :-)

Everyday Routines Make Life Feel More Meaningful

How racial stereotypes impact the way we communicate

Common medications sway moral judgment

How social anxiety manifests on Facebook

Solitary Confinement Is Cruel and Ineffective

Is It Time to Rethink Life-without-Parole Sentencing?

Pre-Crastination: The Opposite of Procrastination

Money Can Buy Happiness If You Spend It Wisely

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Brain Science for Writers 7/7/15

Achilles by Lycomedes Louvre Ma2120.jpg

"Achilles by Lycomedes Louvre Ma2120" by Jastrow (2007). Licensed under Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons.

Top: What personality features do heroes and psychopaths have in common? Goes off in a few different directions, but raises some interesting questions.

Top: How Other People Influence Our Experience of Reading

Your Facial Bone Structure Has a Big Influence on How People See You

Commenters exposed to prejudiced comments more likely to display prejudice themselves. So yeah, those crazy comment sections that you should never read? They're actually affecting you.

How baby names vary state to state

Health factors influence ex-prisoners’ chances of returning to jail

When these people look in the mirror they see a monster staring back. What it's like to have body dysmorphic disorder.

Higher Income is Related to Less Daily Sadness but Not More Daily Happiness

In Praise of (the Right Kind of) Praise

Do you think like an entrepeneur? (I got zero out of eight :-P)

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The Comprehensive Post of Romance Vibes and Attractive Things

Swoonworthy reads...

Daughter of Dusk, the sequel to my first novel Midnight Thief, launches in August (And you can get a free signed novella and other swag if you preorder!).  So I thought I'd share some of the notes I made while revising the book.

Notes from my second round of beta readers for Daughter of Dusk came back with many people wanting more chemistry between Kyra and the love interest. So as I started revising, I needed to come up with ways to make the attraction show through.

As I went into my revision process, I did something that I've been doing since before I sold my first book, which was to analyze books which I thought did a good job at whatever I was trying to achieve, and breaking down how they did it. I've previously done similar analyses about conveying friendship and writing good death scenes.

For this analysis, I chose two slow burn romances that made me melt:  the Cinder and Kai romance in Cinder by Marissa Meyer, and the Elisa and Hector romance in The Crown of Embers by Rae Carson (which all lovers of romantic stories should check out).  I read through the each book and jotted down everything that made my stomach flutter, and I categorized them below.

So below is a monster list of all things attractive.  I hope you find it useful! Tell me about your favorite romance arcs in the comment section.  And if you check out Daughter of Dusk, let me know how I did!

Brain Science for Writers 6/25/15

Lee Meriwether as Catwoman 1966.jpg

Image Licensed under Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons.

Top Pick: The Problem with Female Superheroes

Top Pick: Why it matters that computers are now able to judge human creativity (HT Passive Guy)

Manning up: men may overcompensate when their masculinity is threatened

Justice system chips away at women’s rights

Social Media Cyber Bullying Linked to Teen Depression

What Makes Magic Funny? (Or anything funny?)

Liar, Liar: Children with good memories are better liars

Irrationality Continues to Plague the Justice System 

How baby names vary state to state

The health effects of homophobia

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Random Practical Tips for Your Debut Year

At Vromans with Susan Adrian, Mary McCoy, and Gretchen McNeil.  Thanks to Elizabeth Briggs for the Photo

So I recently finished up the Pasadena Teen Blog Fest, which will probably be the last event I do to promote my debut novel Midnight Thief. The next events will be to promote the sequel Daughter of Dusk, and I'll be posting info about those launch events soon. 

This has gotten me to thinking about the things I learned this past year about having a book out--not so much big picture, overarching things, but the little bits of practical advice I might pass along to someone with a book coming out soon.  This is what I came up with.