Welcome to Words Deferred. I’m Sam Johnston. I write software by day, and fiction by night.

I post about the art and craft of writing fiction. I also post serial fiction – novels, one bite at a time – and take you behind the scenes to look at my writing process.

Get New Posts Delivered Directly to Your Inbox

Recent Words

New blog posts every Monday morning. New serial fiction or writing process journals every Friday morning. Other stuff on Wednesdays, sometimes!

Drabble — A Going Away Party

The residents of the last escape ship wake up early and decide what events to attend. A Shakespeare reading or a striptease? A fistfight or a folk dance? A prayer service or a rave? An orgy or a tea ceremony? The sacred, profane and mundane are represented in equal measure. We disable the fire suppression […]

Great Writing — Why the Lucky Stiff

Programming computers is a serious business. It is a business involving tens of thousands of workers across thousands of companies, all busy making and spending hundreds of billions of dollars. It is an industry that I happen to have been in for most of my adult life. You can see the seriousness of software development […]

Narrative in Games — Revisited

Games are uniquely positioned as the newest narrative art form, the baby of a family that contains novels, stories, movies and television. Narrative games are an even newer invention—after all, there is no story to speak of in Pong, Space Invaders or Pac Man, and even many modern games still treat any sort of narrative […]

The Archives