Author Archives: Brian A. Klems


Raise vs. Rise

Way too often do we see folks misuse these two words. Here's a simple explanation of the difference between raise and rise—and when to use each.

The Afterlife

You've died and gone to heaven, only it's nothing like you've imagined. You're greeted by a guide—someone from your past—who gives you a tour and explains what you can expect out of the afterlife. There's one question you've been dying to know and, at the end of the tour, you decide to ask.

Why You Can’t Get a Flu Shot Excuse

You're at the doctor's office for a regular check up when the doctor suggests you get a flu shot as well. You hate shots, so you come up with the most outlandish excuse as to why you can't get one. Start your story with "You're not going to believe this, but ... " and...

Love Letter From the Future?

You are 15 years old and, while still living with your parents, you discover a secret room in your house. It is filled with all sorts of strange things, but one thing in particular catches your eye: It's a love letter to your mom from someone who isn't your dad. What's more peculiar is...

They Took Everything—Except One Odd Thing

There's been a break-in at your house. The robbers took everything—your couch, your clothes, your toilet paper—except for one odd item that they left right in the middle of your living room. This item, though meaningless to the police, is a clue that you recognize and will lead you to the culprits.


Announcing the July Winner of our Write It Your Way Competition

A big congrats to Rebecca Czarnecki of Denver, Colo., whose short story "Between Shores" won our July Write It Your Way competition. (The theme for the July competition was "Summer.") Her story ranked No. 1 out of nearly 350 entries. Enjoy Rebecca's story below and don't miss your chance to enter the upcoming Writer's...


5 Ways Writers Can Get the Most Out of Goodreads

If you're like me, you have a Goodreads account and occasionally use it to update your list of books that you've read—but haven't used it for much else. Goodreads Community Manager offered up this guest post to me on how authors can use Goodreads to their benefit. I found the information very useful and...

She’s Not Dead

Your high school math teacher disappeared when you were sixteen years old, but now you have reason to believe she’s not dead. A week ago before your high school reunion, you received a mysterious letter that appears to be in code—much like the puzzles she once gave her students. Now, at the reunion, you...


Winners of the Writer’s Digest Cliches Contest

Thanks to everyone who participated in the Cliches Contest and contributed their cliche examples. We had a record number of comments on this blog (WOW!). The overwhelming support on Twitter really left me humbled that so many of you enjoyed the post. As a special thanks, instead of giving away just one copy of...

Undercover at Bingo

You’re on a top-secret spy mission—for your grandmother. She can’t make it to her Monday Night Bingo (you tell us why), but she’s certain that one of the regulars is cheating, and she sends you to check it out. Conduct a covert operation to catch this cheater in the act.