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I am a fiction author and essayist, specializing in speculative fiction, human uplift, and all things geek. Visit my website at ryandoskocil.com.
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I’m a gay man, and that’s officially the first time I’ve announced it publicly. I didn’t come out until this year. Good old 2021. I’m 41 years old and my life has turned inside out.

I’ve known I’m gay for as long as I can remember. I grew up believing…

Photo by Vinicius “amnx” Amano on Unsplash

The Struggle is Real

Creativity is fickle. It requires a specific kind of energy, which is a combination of motivation and inspiration. Motivation is the reason you’re writing. What are you trying to accomplish? Who is it for? What does it mean to you? Inspiration is that feeling you get when you see a…

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Setting, Place, and Atmosphere

A wonderland chocolate factory, a tech-enhanced arena where adolescents fight to the death, a sprawling haunted hotel in the mountains of Colorado — each of these images trigger immediate recognition for most of us. …

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Why Workshop?

Writing fiction isn’t a simple process. After your world is invented, your characters developed, and your sentences constructed, it’s time to focus on the hard part: revision.

Revision is vital to polishing and perfecting your work, but the best revisions come after getting outside feedback. …

Education Matters

Many of us follow a stereotypical tract in our early life: go to school, get a degree, start a career. These are often considered terminal points in our lives, to the effect that once completed, many people don’t revisit them. But it’s a mistake to believe that a diploma or…

As a writer, I spend an inordinate amount of time workshopping for other writers, haunting writers’ circles, stalking Facebook writers’ groups, and interacting with writing students. In each of these venues, the same questions come up over and over again from new writers. How long should a book be? What…

Strapped to an IV line, an oxygen cannula stuffed in my nose, an itchy cuff taking my blood pressure every few minutes, and my torso pocked with sensors, I felt like I had hit rock bottom. My wife had dragged me to the emergency room because I could barely lift…

I once thought Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Fibromyalgia, and other “invisible” illnesses were a sham. I thought these labels were for patients who didn’t want to work, or for people who wanted disability pay. I thought these people created their illnesses by eating junk food and not exercising. I thought laziness…

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The Shape Underneath

You’re a writer. You’ve done some serious time, keeping your nose to the proverbial grindstone, researching, assessing, assaulting blank pages with words. You’ve stepped back and looked at the hot mess of your first draft, hacked it to pieces, and glued it back together. But still, every time you reread…

If you’re like most of us, you don’t think much about the environmental impacts of crops like sugar, soy, or cacao. We don’t see them grown, and thus have little regard for the vast resources required to keep them productive. In fact, many people are so removed from food sources…

Ryan Doskocil

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