A Better Approach to “Write Every Day” Two Cups of Tea by peppermint quartz on DeviantArt, Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License, Happy New Year!
Happy … and yet. Everywhere you look, it’s all about pushing ourselves, isn’t it? First came November’s NaNoWriMo, with all the tips for writing more, more, more, writing faster, faster, faster. Then came the holidays, with 12 days left to shop/plan/wrap/bake/revise that manuscript from last month, 11, 10, 9 … And now it’s on to who can make the biggest commitment to his or her writing in the coming year. I should start by saying that I am a huge believer in having a writing discipline. And yet, it’s not always human to expect ourselves to maintain that intensity and speed and productivity indefinitely.
Tips for Turning Online Procrastination Time into Writing Research Time. Therese here.
Today’s guest is someone who’s been a WU lurker for over a year and half: L.B. Gale. L.B. works as an educator–a literacy specialist–in New York City, and is an aspiring fantasy author who received her Master’s degree at the University of Chicago, focused on comparative mythology and fantasy literature. Her favorite novels are A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man by James Joyce, The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood, and His Dark Materials by Philip Pullman.
L.B. brings something unique to WU today in the form of in-depth tips for online research. Grammar Rules You Need to Know: Punctuation & Sentence Structure. Details can really make or break a story.
Details can also make or break your writing, which is why it’s important to study grammar. Spelling and punctuation are important, but if you can’t craft proper sentences using the right verb forms or making sure an adverb is used where an adverb is needed, you’ll have a harder time convincing an agent or publisher that you’re up to the task of writing a great manuscript. The Grammar Grab-bag: 4 Common Grammar Rules You Need to Know focuses on several of the most common questions about grammar and gives you tips on how to avoid making missteps in your writing. Do you remember the difference between an intransitive verb and a transitive verb? 5 Tips to Help You Pick Up the Pace. In today’s world of commercial/popular fiction, most readers expect stories to move along briskly.
Readers are also less likely to pick up or continue reading a story that they feel “drags.” Author and fiction columnist Nancy Kress explains the five methods to move quickly through your story. As Kress explains, “As the speed of communication increases, so does a reader’s desire for fiction that rewards by starting quickly and moving at a cinematic pace.” Creating Suspense in Fiction With Backstory. To keep the readers’ attention through the long midsection of your book, you’ll need to continually develop the conflict and advance the plot in logical steps without making the story predictable.
What keeps readers turning pages is suspense, which you can create using a variety of techniques, including tension, pacing and foreshadowing. The suspense we’re discussing here doesn’t necessarily involve the characters being in peril; it’s created whenever there’s something the reader wants to know. Will Joe kiss Brenda? The 5 Steps to Writing a Novel that Sells. How to Write a Manuscript - 5 Tips You Need to Know. Getting started on any writing project is always the toughest.
For years I talked about turning an idea I had from college into a novel so amazing that Oprah would beg to have me on—probably twice! I had notes for the novel in my head and, once in a blue moon, I’d actually sit down to try to write the damn thing. 100 Common-Sense Ways to Write Better. Posted by Melissa Donovan on March 8, 2016 ·
Use the Senses in Fiction. On September 9th, 2012 by Fiction Editor Beth Hill and last modified on May 18, 2013 Maybe I should say, the eyes shouldn’t always have it.
No, the title isn’t a reference to parliamentary procedures, simply a play on words. While we learned all about the five senses when we were kids, and while we sometimes read of characters with extra senses, I’ve found that writers often limit their characters to a single sense. Characters interact with their story world by seeing people and events and objects. They don’t necessarily notice every detail, but they do notice, through the visual, quite often. That is, they see a lot more than they touch, taste, smell, or hear.
They look over at, look up at, look down toward. And while they’re always looking, the style or method of looking usually isn’t conveyed to the reader. 3 Ways to Know When to End Your Chapters. At some point in writing your novel, you have to start thinking about “chaptering,” the process of deciding exactly when and where your chapter breaks will go.
This is one issue for which you should not turn to the classics for help. In the days of Dickens and Tolstoy, the first few pages of each chapter served to get the reader ready for the events to come. Have you ever been to an elaborate theatrical production during which the curtain remains up through intermissions so you can see the workers shifting and turning the huge sets on their groaning sleds and rollers? 7 Tricks to Write More with Less Willpower. Three Times You Should Use a Comma. Five Tips to Get the Most Out of Your Writing Sessions. Use the Two Hour Rule to Make Progress on Your Creative Projects - Productive Flourishing. Are you having trouble getting started with a creative project or figuring out how to keep momentum with it?
One of the reasons people get stuck with creative projects is because they make a conscious or unconscious plan to spend a full day or week working on something. Reality check: most of us will never get full days to work on something, and, when we do, we can’t work for that long anyway. Our creative energy won’t last that long. The flip side of the coin is that most creative, daring projects are hard to do in 15 and 30 minute chunks. Most projects like this have an engagement threshold that requires enough time to set up and sink into the Flow. 500 Words a Day: The Secret to Developing a Regular Writing Habit. Why You Should Break Grammar Rules On Purpose. The Secret to Show, Don’t Tell. How to Break the Rules of Writing. Here at Writer’s Digest (and despite the There Are No Rules moniker of this blog), we talk a lot about doing things by the book—from understanding grammatical and structural writing rules, to following submission guidelines, to otherwise conducting yourself like a pro.
And that’s why we had so much fun putting together the latest edition of WD: “The Rule-Breaker’s Issue.” In it, you’ll find plenty of ways to put all that straightforward advice aside and instead challenge yourself to take smart risks that can pay off—for both your craft and your career. To celebrate the release of this new July/August Writer’s Digest (on newsstands right now!)
5 Story Mistakes Even Good Writers Make. Novel Writing: 7 Simple Ways to Make a Good Story Great. Improve Your Writing By Eliminating Redundancies. Eliminate redundancies to improve your writing. Writers are human, and sometimes we make mistakes. You’re probably aware of the most common mistakes in writing: comma splices, run-on sentences, mixing up homophones, and a variety of other broken grammar, spelling, and punctuation rules. In my editing and coaching work, I’ve noticed another common mistake: redundancy. Writing Tips for Better Productivity. 8 Common Creative Writing Mistakes. Are you making any of these mistakes in your creative writing? We all make mistakes in our writing. The most common mistake is the typo–a missing word, an extra punctuation mark, a misspelling, or some other minor error that is an oversight rather than a reflection of the writer’s skills. Download 101 Mistakes Here. Welcome to the Download Page! Step One is simple.
Click the button below to download your special report. It will show up in PDF form wherever your regular downloads go. The 101 WORST Mistakes Writers Make In First Draft A comprehensive listing of the worst mistakes that appear in MOST first-draft manuscripts, including mine. 42 Fiction Writing Tips for Novelists. Writing tips for fiction writers. The more I explore fiction writing, the more complex and multi-layered it becomes. Through the processes of brainstorming, outlining, researching, writing, and revising, I have discovered countless details that authors have to consider as they set out to produce a viable work of fiction. Over the years, I have collected a vast pile of notes and ideas concerning fiction writing.
As I was going through these notes, I figured they could be compiled into a master list of writing tips that might help writers tackle a novel by offering different perspectives and by providing fodder for the creative process. How To Write a Death Scene. Creating Scenes: Fiction's Building Blocks. En Dash, Em Dash, and Hyphen ~ CuteWriting. We have three types of dashes in use: The hyphen, En Dash, and the Em Dash. Twenty Rules of Thumb for Creativity. Twenty Rules of Thumb for Creativity. 25 Unique Places to Find Story Ideas. Tone/Attitude Words. The Other Side of the Story: How Much Do You Need to Describe Your Characters? By Janice Hardy, @Janice_Hardy. How To Write a Death Scene. How To Write Character Emotion: ANGER. JOIN THE DISCUSSION AT. How to Use Commonly Misused Words.
Historical Romance Author Robyn DeHart, Legend Hunters , Ladies Amateur Sleuth Society. How to Describe a Smell: 10 steps (with pictures) Edit Article Sample Descriptions of Smells. Hack your way out of writer's block. Get Your Writing Fighting Fit Chapter 3. Free Action Verb list for Writers.
Passive and Active Voice - Writing Academy. Emotional Writing. Describing Emotions in Novels - novelwritingsite. Describe Emotions. Choosing vocabulary to describe a place. A Simple Novel Outline – 9 questions for 25 chapters « H.E. Roulo. Advice on Novel Writing. Describing Emotions in Novels - novelwritingsite. Describe Emotions. En Dash, Em Dash, and Hyphen ~ CuteWriting. 5 Ways to Deal with Word Repetition. 104 POWER VERBS. The Alot is Better Than You at Everything. 20 Common Grammar Mistakes That (Almost) Everyone Gets Wrong. Grammatically Speaking.
Plague Words and Phrases. En Dash, Em Dash, and Hyphen ~ CuteWriting. Writer Wednesdays: My Writing Tips. Writing Tips. Twenty Rules of Thumb for Creativity. The Furlow Writing Lab. 5 Ways Not to Write a Novel. Best Creative Writing Exercises (PHOTOS) Where to Find Ideas for Writing a Story. Daily Writing Tips.
Gerunds, Participles, and Infinitives. Action Verbs: Creative Writing Tips on Choosing Powerful Verbs to Grab Attention. How to Make Readers Feel Emotion. Understanding Narrative Mode - Pro Writing Tips. Show, Don't (Just) Tell (Dennis G. Jerz, Seton Hill University) How do you keep your readers reading? - Pro Writing Tips. The 7 worst ways to start your novel - Pro Writing Tips. Said Is Not a Four-Letter Word. The Ultimate Guide to Writing Better Than You Normally Do. The Show Versus Tell Debate - Writing Academy. Passive and Active Voice - Writing Academy. Writing Tips. Fiction Writing Tips. Fiction Factor - Writing Tips for Fiction Writers. Daily Writing Tips.
10 Tips to Improve Your Fiction Writing Skills. Strong Verbs. Choose Active, Precise Verbs. Creative writing prompts - www.fiction-writers-mentor.com. I Keep a Writer's Notebook alongside my Students. Do you? 7 Habits of Serious Writers. 201 Ways to Arouse Your Creativity. Novel Writing Tips & Fundamentals – Storyfix.com. Quips and Tips for Successful Writers -