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Welcome to the Purdue University Online Writing Lab (OWL)

Welcome to the Purdue University Online Writing Lab (OWL)

Creative Writing Exercises -- Creative Writing Exercises for Craft No matter what stage you're at with your writing, it's always beneficial to work on craft and technique. These creative writing exercises target common problems and weaknesses. Switch Point of View Both first person and third person have their strengths and weaknesses; what works for one story may not work for another. A Day Without Modifiers While modifiers -- adjectives and adverbs -- can add to a story, too many, or the wrong ones, can bog down your prose and lead to weaker nouns and verbs. Avoid Back Story Unlike the other creative writing exercises on this list, this one asks you to work in another genre. Listening for Dialogue Not everyone starts out with an ear for dialogue, but fortunately it can be developed, like any other skill. Description Creative Writing Exercise Who's the most memorable person you've ever met?

6 Ways to Hook Your Readers Although I consider myself an avid reader, I must admit I have a short attention span when it comes to getting into books. If you fail to grab my attention in the first few lines, I start spacing out. Most readers are like me. Most people don’t want to spend the first 50 pages trying to get into a book. Here are a few things I find annoying in the first lines of a story: Dialogue. The last thing you want to do as a writer is annoy or bore people. (N.B. 1. Put a question in your readers’ minds. “Those old cows knew trouble was coming before we did.” 2. By starting at an important moment in the story, your reader is more likely to want to continue so he or she can discover what will happen next. “It was dark where she was crouched but the little girl did as she’d been told.” 3. Description is good when it encourages people to paint a picture in their minds. “Last night I dreamt I went to Manderley again.” 4. 5. “They had flown from England to Minneapolis to look at a toilet.” 6.

Dragon Writing Prompts :: Picture prompts As of today, that’s how many posts there are at Dragon Writing Prompts :-) I had vague thoughts of a prompt inspired by 1000 as I saw the number approaching. Well, no great original ideas popped into my head. No not-great original ones, either. ;-) So, since a picture’s worth 1000 words, I browsed through the writing area of Worth1000.com for a picture prompt. (Click for larger view at the artist’s Worth1000 page.) Write a 1000 words inspired by the picture. Does the skeleton have something to do with death? Why a cat and an octopus? Some other stuff that doesn’t have to do with the prompt, but does have to do with the picture and Worth1000. marymagdalyne created and posted the picture that inspired the The Quatrains of Nostradamworth writing contest at Worth1000. Pretty cool! Worth1000 always has several writing contests going on. (You can enter without paying, but can’t win. Just for fun, here are a few photo effects contests that relate to language. Ghost Ren 6 — “Haunting art”

How to Write a Terrific Author Bio Posted on Jul 5th, 2011 | 247 comments Sometimes it’s hard to believe how difficult it can be to write about yourself in a bio—after all, you’re a writer! But I understand it’s not as simple as that, so here are a few tips to make it easier. Write your bio in first person for query letters, third person for most other purposes including proposals, book jackets, article bylines. Make it professional but you also need to convey personality and writing style. What gives you credibility? If your book centers on something specific—the Civil War, for example—are you a member of a Civil War society? Try not to include too much “resumé” type information–education, job history, etc. because it tends to be boring. As you write a bio, consider carefully the purpose of the bio – who is the audience? How to write a bio if you have no publishing credits: If you’re a member of a writers’ organization such as SCBWI, ACFW or ASJA, you can mention it. A bio for a query letter: Be Sociable, Share!

Write to Done Arouse your creativity Electric flesh-arrows … traversing the body. A rainbow of color strikes the eyelids. A foam of music falls over the ears. It is the gong of the orgasm. ~ Anais Nin Creativity is like sex. I know, I know. The people I speak of are writers. Below, I’ve exposed some of their secret tips, methods, and techniques. Now, lie back, relax and take pleasure in these 201 provocative ways to arouse your creativity. Great hacks from Merlin Mann of 43 Folders Creative Writing Ideas, Courses Online, Free Classes for Writers

How to Write Without Colour As writers, we rely on our unique ability to convey the visual world in words. We conjure images in the minds of readers about lush green fields, grey, decaying buildings, or velvety red berries ripe for picking. But how do you describe green when you’ve never actually seen green? How do you create words that move people when you don’t see the world the same way they do? You think you’re writing project is hard? I’m Steff, a legally blind writer and blogger. Rod cells are extremely sensitive to light, so on bright days or when surrounded by white, I see the world like an over-exposed black and white film. People frequently tell me they feel sorry for me – they couldn’t imagine a world without color. We’re all presented with unique challenges, and we define ourselves by how we choose to meet them. As I write this, my nose is about 1cm from the computer screen (that’s 2/5 of an inch, for those of you who are imperially inclined). Develop an attitude. As writers, we’re eternally curious.

60 Awesome Search Engines for Serious Writers June 20th, 2010 Finding the information you need as a writer shouldn’t be a chore. Luckily, there are plenty of search engines out there that are designed to help you at any stage of the process, from coming up with great ideas to finding a publisher to get your work into print. Professional Find other writers, publishers and ways to market your work through these searchable databases and search engines. Writing These helpful tools will help you along in the writing process. WriteSearch: This search engine focuses exclusively on sites devoted to reading and writing to deliver its results.The Burry Man Writers Center: Find a wealth of writing resources on this searchable site.Writing.com: This fully-featured site makes it possible to find information both fun and serious about the craft of writing.Purdue OWL: Need a little instruction on your writing? Research Try out these tools to get your writing research done in a snap. Reference Need to look up a quote or a fact? Niche Writers Books Blogging

A 12-Day Plan of Simple Writing Exercises It’s the perfect time to restart your engine and get back into writing. Here, I offer up a 12-day plan of simple writing exercises to help you keep your creative juices flowing without eating up too much of your time. Follow this plan and in less than half a month, you’ll not only be impressed with what you’ve accomplished, but you may also have something worth publishing. The 12-Day Plan of Simple Writing Exercises Day 1: Write 10 potential book titles of books you’d like to write. Day 2: Create a character with personality traits of someone you love, but the physical characteristics of someone you don’t care for. Day 3: Write a setting based on the most beautiful place you’ve ever seen. Day 4: Write a letter to an agent telling her how wonderful you are. Day 5: Write a 20-line poem about a memorable moment in your life. Day 6: Select a book on your shelf and pick two chapters at random. Day 7: Write a letter to yourself telling you what you need to improve in the coming 6 months. Brian A.

Get Paid $50 to Write a Guest Post There’s been plenty written on the web, including this blog, about websites like Associated Content and Demand Media. The problem with these sites is that they use a revenue sharing model which means most people will never earn more than a buck or two for their article. We know your time is more valuable than that, so we’ve put together a list of blogs that will pay you $50 or more for every article that you write for them. Guest blogging is pretty easy and most articles only need to be between 500-600 words. On to the list…. 1. This site was founded by Heather Wheeler and Joanie Demer, who have both featured on TLC’s Extreme Couponing. 2. This website is all about building online businesses. 3. Writers Weekly was established in 1997 and it is a freelance writing ezine and hub for all things writing. 4. Tuts+ describes itself as a tutorial site with thousands of videos, articles, and tutorials to help people learn new skills. 5. Another writing blog. 6. Good luck Penny Hoarders!

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