background preloader

Writing Tips

Facebook Twitter

The 10 Types of Writers' Block (and How to Overcome Them) New Fiction Exercises, Brian Kiteley. Brian Kiteley Sample Fiction Exercises from The 4 A.M.

New Fiction Exercises, Brian Kiteley

Breakthrough These are some exercises from The 4 A.M. MpdsleS0ii1r0acyio1_500.jpg (JPEG Image, 284 × 750 pixels) - Scaled (79%) Set up Your Story in the First Paragraphs. By Jodie Renner, editor, author, speaker I receive several first chapters (and synopses) every week as submissions for possible editing, and I always read the first page.

Some are clear and compelling and make me want to read more. But too often, two main problems emerge: Either the author spends too much time revving his engine with description or backstory before we even care (boring); or we’re plunged right into the story but have no idea where we are or what’s going on (confusing). Read Great Books to Inspire Your Own Writing.

This is a recurring column I’m calling “7 Things I’ve Learned So Far,” where writers (this installment written by Jane Higgins, author of the acclaimed YA debut, THE BRIDGE) at any stage of their career can talk about writing advice and instruction as well as how they possibly got their book agent — by sharing seven things they’ve learned along their writing journey that they wish they knew at the beginning.

Read Great Books to Inspire Your Own Writing

(Look over our growing list of young adult literary agents.) GIVEAWAY: Jane is excited to give away a free copy of her novel to a random commenter. Comment within 2 weeks; winners must live in Canada/US to receive the book by mail. You can win a blog contest even if you’ve won before. (Update: threetuis won.) Jane Higgins is the author of the debut YA novel, THE BRIDGE, (Tundra Books, 2012), a post-apocalyptic story about young people caught up in a war. Problem With Procrastination? Try Doing Nothing. Just about anyone who has ever put off a troublesome task is familiar with one of my Secrets of Adulthood: Working is one of the most dangerous forms of procrastination.

Problem With Procrastination? Try Doing Nothing

When there’s some chore you just don’t want to tackle, every other chore seems alluring. As a friend told me, “My apartment is never cleaner than when I have a writing assignment due.” In Roy Baumeister and John Tierney’s fascinating book, Willpower: Rediscovering the Greatest Human Strength, they suggest the “Nothing Alternative” to this problem. That is, if you want to get yourself to do something, make the alternative to that task to do nothing.

Anton Chekhov on Writing. My own experience is that once a story has been written, one has to cross out the beginning and the end.

Anton Chekhov on Writing

It is there that we authors do most of our lying. When you describe the miserable and unfortunate, and want to make the reader feel pity, try to be somewhat colder — that seems to give a kind of background to another's grief, against which it stands out more clearly. Whereas in your story the characters cry and you sigh. Self publishing costs nothing. A number of people have asked me “How much does self-publishing cost?”

Self publishing costs nothing

, so this post will clear that up. It may be controversial! Please do post comments if you disagree or have questions. Answer 1: It costs nothing. Nonfiction Narrative and the Yellow Test. Draft is a series about the art and craft of writing.

Nonfiction Narrative and the Yellow Test

I went to see Carrie a week after her accident. Author of Historical and Speculative Fiction. English Idioms Beginning With 'A' - Page 1. Daily Writing Tips. 30 Indispensable Writing Tips From Famous Authors. Colson Whitehead’s Rules for Writing. How to Write a Great Novel: Junot Diaz, Anne Rice, Margaret Atwood and Other Authors Tell. Writers Groups.

Thinking of joining a writers group?

Writers Groups

A writers group is an informal gathering of writers who meet once a month or more to share their poems, short stories, novels, or essays. 7 Simple Ways Writers Can Pay It Forward » All About Writing. Using Dialogue Tags and Punctuation Properly. Dialogue can be tough, but for a lot of writers, tagging and punctuating it correctly is even harder.

Using Dialogue Tags and Punctuation Properly

Here are some of the most common errors I see, and how to correct them. Dialogue Tags. What Is Considered Previously Published Writing? Theory of Narrative Causality. Westbow Press Blog. Canada Writes - Louise Penny Master Class: 18 things I wish I'd known before starting my first book. How To Write Fiction Based On Real Life. Writing fiction from real-life experiences isn’t as easy as it sounds.

How To Write Fiction Based On Real Life

Fiction writers—writers of short stories and novels—must know when to use real-life details and when those details don’t work well in prose. Putting your real life in writing can be inspiring, but it can be dangerous too. Creating Fiction From Personal Experiences: The Obsessed Writer’s Guide To Crawling Your Way Back To Sanity « Courage 2 Create. Editor’s note: this is a guest post by Kathleen Pooler of Memoir Writer’s Journey.

The Obsessed Writer’s Guide To Crawling Your Way Back To Sanity « Courage 2 Create

“There’s nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at a typewriter and open a vein.” - Red Smith I’m a memoir writer and a retired nurse practitioner. I’ve also been consumed by my writing for the past three years. I’ve taken writing classes, attended numerous writing conferences, workshops, webinars and I’ve also worked non-stop on building my author platform through blogging, tweeting, Facebooking, Goodreading, Google+ing and LinkedIn-ing. Canada Writes - Shyam Selvadurai vs. Robert Hough: Write what you know/Write what you don't. Courage 2 Create. 20 Ways to Kill Your Writer's Block Forever. Has this happened to you? You want to write some new posts for your blog, but nothing’s coming to you. You’re just sitting there, with those blank white pixels taunting you, until your eyeballs hurt. If you’re going to be a successful writer of any kind — blogger, journalist, copywriter, novelist, you name it — writer’s block can’t happen.

The good news is you can learn how to write on cue. Why reading aloud makes a book so much better. As a result of the Dickens bicentenary, I have been listening to the unabridged Naxos recording of David Copperfield read by Nicholas Boulton. Dickens of course was a great reader aloud of his own work, and it plays well in this format. Among my discoveries, on the re-reading, I've noticed, for the first time, the impressive similarities between Mr Micawber and Homer Simpson, and also between the character of the servant Littimer and PG Wodehouse's Jeeves. But that's by the by. Listening to Naxos, and reflecting on Dickens, I have been reminded what a crucial role the reading out of prose has played in our literature.

Aside from The Inimitable (as Dickens called himself), three English classics – all of them in the cultural news at the moment – owe a lot to having been conceived, wholly or in part, through the medium of the spoken word. Ten Obvious Truths About Fiction. The following essay was previewed in the class that Stephen Graham Jones taught for LitReactor, Your Life Story Is Five Pages Long. 1. The reader should never have to work to figure out the basics of your story. Who’s whose wife or husband, what the time period is if that matters, why these people have broken into this house, and on and on, just the basic, ground-level facts about your story. If you don’t relay that stuff up-front, as quickly and efficiently as possible (and please don’t be fancy), then your story becomes a game of three-card-monty, with you hiding information under this or that shell, trying to keep everything moving fast enough that nobody knows what’s going on.

Which is to say your story becomes about the reading of the story, not the experience the story is trying to get the reader to engage. Prompts, lessons, and resources for writing classrooms. Pan-European MFA - Creative Writing. 6 Writing Tips From John Steinbeck - Maria Popova - Entertainment. Set up Your Story in the First Paragraphs. Creative Writing Prompts. How to Write a Novel Using the Snowflake Method. How to Stop Procrastinating and Start Writing. Procrastination has to be one of the top enemies of productivity. Steven Pressfield, author of “War of Art” would call it one form of resistance. Writers, Agents & Editors Network Blog: Henry Miller's 11 Writing Commandments. The Writer: Advice and inspiration for today’s writer. 25 Things Writers Should Stop Doing.

I read this cool article last week — “30 Things To Stop Doing To Yourself” — and I thought, hey, heeeey, that’s interesting. Writers might could use their own version of that. Writing Quickly: A Secret Strategy. Tips And Tricks For Writing Fast (And Professionally!) (25) The Guardian on Facebook. Haruki Murakami: Talent Is Nothing Without Focus and Endurance. William Shunn : Manuscript Format : Short Story - StumbleUpon. Pro Writing Tips » Grammar and writing tips. Top 10 Tips : Starting and Finishing the 1st Draft - Rasmus Rasmussen dot com. With this year’s Nanowrimo, I will be finishing the first draft of a novel for the fifth time.

Writing tips. Writing tips. 25 Things Writers Should Start Doing.