Evaluating Progressive Complications

FUNDAMENTAL FRIDAYS: Learn how to evaluate progressive complications so that you can raise the stakes for your hero and write a story that works.

Writing a Page-Turner: Part 1

FUNDAMENTAL FRIDAYS: In this three-part series on Narrative Drive, Valerie explores how Mystery grabs readers' attention and keeps them turning pages.

Stories Need Great Villains

FUNDAMENTAL FRIDAYS: The middle build belongs to the villain. Without a strong villain the hero can't be heroic. Learn how to create a powerful force of antagonism in your story.

Write a Scene That Works

THE CREATIVE PENN BLOG: Learn how to write a scene that works, the Story Grid way. What are the five commandments of storytelling and what is a scene really all about.

Obligatory Scenes and Conventions

FUNDAMENTAL FRIDAYS: Learn how to find the obligatory scenes and conventions of any genre using the Redemption Plot as an example.

Value Shift 101

FUNDAMENTAL FRIDAYS: Everything you ever wanted to know about the global spectrum of value, external and internal charge and more in this Story Grid 101 article.

Finding Your Genre

FUNDAMENTAL FRIDAYS: The first thing an author needs to do, is decide which genre she's writing in. But what is genre and how do you decide? Learn how in this Story Grid 101 article.


Stark Reflections Podcast E104

I speak with Mark Leslie Lefebvre about transitioning from a full-time corporate job to life as a full-time writer and editor.

Stark Reflections Podcast E213

Story theory is important, but unless writers can apply it, it's useless. In this episode I speak with Mark Leslie Lefebvre about putting story theory into practice.

Stark Reflections Podcast E271

Melanie Hill and I chat with Mark Leslie Lefebvre about our new Story Nerd Podcast. This was a whole lot of fun!

Self Publishing Insiders E081

On the Draft to Digital livestream podcast, I spoke with Mark Leslie Lefebvre about storytelling concepts that are consistent across story form (novel, film, stage play). 

In the Know Podcast

Dr. Dianne Schindler interviewed me about storytelling and my book club focused on stories by, for, and about women.

Amphibian Press Podcast E35

Marissa Frosh interviewed me about what it's like to be a writer, and the challenges of writing across genre.

Best Book Ever Podcast E112

During this interview, I nerd out with fellow author, Julie Strauss, about the magnificent book The Murder of Roger Ackroyd by Agatha Christie. 

How Do You Write Podcast E124

Host Rachel Herron interviewed me about my writing routine, what it takes to be a pro author, and how to write a great thriller. 

Story Grid Podcast Episode 151

What makes Story Grid such an incredible method for writers of fiction and non-fiction? In this episode, Valerie talks to Shawn Coyne to find out!

Story Grid Podcast Episode 110

Introducing the newest Story Grid project, the Story Grid Editor Roundtable Podcast. Listen as the editors analyze the Horror classic Alien.

Writership Podcast Episode 120

Listen in as host Leslie Watts and guest editor Valerie Francis analyze the crisis question of a scene from Lock and Key by Emily Bowie.

Writership Podcast Episode 107

Learn how to build tension in a scene as host Leslie Watts and guest editor Valerie Francis critique the first chapter a middle grade fantasy novel.

Writership Podcast Episode 105

Host Leslie Watts and guest editor Valerie Francis critique the prologue of a thriller by Maxwell Perkins. Tune in to learn what works and what doesn't.

Writer on the Road Episode 24

Valerie Francis talks with podcast host, Mel Hammond about the power of word-of-mouth and how to launch your book in the digital age .

The Faster Fiction Podcast

Ever wish you could write faster? Podcast host, Alexandra Amor, can teach you how. In this episode, Alexandra interviews Valerie Francis about the craft and business of writing.

Other Media

CBC Television Interview

Here & Now interviewed Valerie Francis, along with the other members of Romancing the Rock (local writing group) as part of a Valentine’s Day special.