Author Archives: Brian A. Klems

A Mysterious Request

You receive a letter at your workplace from a high school classmate, who is now in prison. “I know I’ve caused you a lot of grief,” the letter says, “but there’s something I need that only you can get for me. Don’t tell anyone about this.”

One More Round

As an online companion to our article in the October 2012 issue, read more tales about writerly drinking legends Oscar Wilde, Dylan Thomas, Edgar Allan Poe, and Dorothy Parker.

Fanning Out

Delve deeper into the expansive universe of fan fiction with our bonus list of more popular websites you can visit to read—and post—fan work.

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Which vs. That

The battle over whether to use which or that is one many people struggle to get right. It's a popular grammar question and most folks want a quick rule of thumb so they can get it right. Here it is.

Terrible Concert

You’ve just been to the worst rock concert of your life. You’re at a bar with friends, drowning your disgust, when the lead singer of the band shows up and offers to buy you a drink. You agree to under one condition—and that deal leads to one memorable night.

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Do Agents Represent Freelancers?

Are there any literary agents who represent nonfiction writers looking to publish magazine articles? If so, how does a writer find one? Here's what you need to know about literary agents and magazine articles.

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What You Really Need to Know About Memoir Writing

I've always thought that if I were to ever write a memoir, it'd be the most boring 80,000 words in the history of publishing (or at least a close second to this). My life has, thus far, been fun, entertaining and interesting to me, but how would that translate into an interesting...

Something’s Wrong With This Wedding

Your best friend from college has invited you to his wedding. You haven’t seen him for years, so you’re excited to catch up. But when you arrive at the wedding, you discover that your best friend's bride is someone from your past—and you realize you must stop the wedding at all costs.

Bonus Mystery Kits Just for You

Our July Mystery Kit sold out in record time, but I was given a handful specifically for readers of the No Rules Blog—including you! If you like writing mystery or thriller novels, this collection has everything you need to get your story started, in shape and ready to send to agents and publishers (and...

A Newspaper From the Future

You are walking to your car when you pass a boy selling newspapers on the street. He doesn’t look like he’s getting any customers, so you buy a copy, only to discover that it’s dated a week from today. And one particular story makes you realize you need to take action—now.

Follow That Man

You’re a taxi driver in a one-light town. You’ve arrived at the county library to pick up your passenger, a girl no older than thirteen. She says, “You see that Mexican restaurant across the street? In about five minutes, a man is going to come out of that restaurant, and I want you to...

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The 7 Deadly Sins of Writing

In a thought-provoking ThrillerFest panel provided by WD managing editor Zachary Petit, four popular authors shared what they believe to be the deadly sins of the writing craft. Here are seven of their offerings. Have you committed any of them?

Golf Fundraiser Takes an Interesting Turn

You're on a golf course taking part in a fundraiser to cure a disease that's near and dear to your heart. On the 11th hole, you hit a ball into the woods. While searching for that ball, you see a white rabbit that stops, looks you right in the eye and says, "Follow me."...

A Mad Scientist Approches You

A mad scientist approaches you with an offer: He has a secret potion that will help you get the thing you want most in this world—be it a person, a thing, an ability, etc. What you don't know (and won't reveal until the end of your story) is that there is one dire consequence...

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Snuck vs. Sneaked

"Sneaked" versus "snuck" is one of those classic grammarian conundrums that you'll hear word enthusiasts debate all the time. Here's a simple explanation to make sure you're using the right word.