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Brian Klems’ The Writer’s Dig

Brian A. Klems is a published author and the online editor of WritersDigest.com. His blog, which covers everything writing—from grammar rules to publishing—is one of the most popular in the writing community. Follow him on Twitter @BrianKlems.

How to Write the Perfect Query Letter

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A literary agent shares a real-life novel pitch that ultimately led to a book deal—and shows you how to query your own work with success. Read more

How to Make Money Writing for the Web

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There are thousands of online writing opportunities for freelancers, many of which pay well. Follow these best practices, and soon you’ll be turning pixels into paychecks. Read more

How to Get Your Writing Noticed

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Throughout the year we bundle together several writing resources that focus on something specific—something that could really, really help you forward your writing career. Oh, and we offer the bundle up for a ridiculously discounted price. There is one catch, though: There’s only 100 bundles available, and once they’re gone, they’re gone. This month’s bundle is … Read more

How to Structure a Killer Novel Ending

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Here are the principles of story structure that you need to apply to your writing in order to get the ending of your fiction right. Read more

Why Watching TV Can Actually Be Good For a Writer

Guilty that you spent some time last night watching TV instead of writing? Don’t feel too bad. As a handful of authors discussed in the “Is Reading Really Considered Working?” panel at ThrillerFest Saturday, writers can learn from more venues than just books—there’s literary merit in taking in some TV.
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10 Things to Remember When Writing a Legal Thriller

“Lawyers can make brilliant heroes,” as author Meg Gardiner pointed out in her ThrillerFest panel “Boxers or Briefs? Making Your Attorney Stand Out.” With that in mind, here are some lessons we drew from the panelists to help you sharpen your protagonist, and bring your legal thriller to life for readers. Read more

9 Inspirational (and Practical) Bits of Advice From Anne Rice, Catherine Coulter, David Morrell and Others

Here’s a collection of wisdoms from the star-studded panels and sessions at ThrillerFest. Read more

EARLY BIRD DEADLINE 7/19: Join Us in LA (& Meet Agents)!

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Come see many popular authors, including Tim Powers, author of 13 novels, including THE ANUBIS GATES, DECLARE, HIDE ME AMONG THE GRAVES, and ON STRANGER TIDES (which was adapted for the fourth … Read more

Free Webinar Monday @ 1:00 EDT – Learn How to Write Compelling, Authentic Dialogue

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If you’ve never tried a webinar before or have been hesitant to try because you’re not sure how it works and don’t know whether it’d be a right fit for you, you … Read more

David Morrell On the Key to Settings

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In his CraftFest session at ThrillerFest, “Setting: How to Make Your Novel Go Places,” David Morrell (author of First Blood) riffed on how to produce fantastic settings that become characters in their own right. Read more

Michael Connelly on the No. 1 Key to Writing a Series

Michael Connelly dishes his No. 1 secret on how to pull off a successful series. Read more

10 Things Shakespeare Can Teach Us About Writing Thrillers

Conspiracy. Murder. Politics. Love. Sex. Ghosts. Pirates. Thrillers and the works of William Shakespeare may have more in common than you’d think. And, as author A.J. Hartley proved in his session “Cues From Shakespeare, the First Thriller Writer,” there’s a lot the bard can teach scribes about storytelling. Read more

How to Write Better Heroes and Villains: Archetypes

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Knowing character archetypes and their traits is key to decoding what motivates your characters—and bringing them to life for readers. Here are some of the main archetypes. Read more

3 of Michael Connelly’s Favorite Bits of Writing Advice

Michael Connelly (author of the Harry Bosch series) shares three of his favorite nuggets of advice from other writers. Read more

What to Look for When Editing Your Manuscript

What should writers do when they finish their first drafts? Author Patricia Gussin reveals how to tune your manuscript up so it’s ready for agents and editors. Read more

Here’s Bestseller T. Jefferson Parker’s Writing Process: Might It Work for You?

In his ThrillerFest session “Off on the Right Foot—When to Outline and When to Write,” T. Jefferson Parker (author of the Charlie Hood series) detailed the ins and outs of his personal writing process. Read more

How to Make Ordinary Characters Compelling

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To craft fascinating characters, you have to know them inside and out, and know them so deeply that you know what motivates them—what causes them to act. Here’s how to do just that. Read more

Winners of the June “OH BOY” Giveaway

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Thanks to everyone, and I mean EVERYONE, who commented, tweeted and participated in my June contest. Hope you enjoyed the articles about my path to writing and publishing. I also hope they help you on your path to writing and publishing your book. (I plan to write more over the coming months, so stay tuned.) If you missed any of the articles, here they are … and here are the winners of the OH BOY giveaway. Read more

How to Craft a Happy Ending

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Whether aspiring to become art or settling into the more modest demands of the police procedural, our stories sober us with this thought: the rules are basically the same, and – when it comes to endings – these rules are rather inflexible. Read more

7 Reasons Writing a Book Makes You a Badass

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I’ve always been a big nerd. But for one shining moment, one GLORIOUS MOMENT, when I finished writing my book, OH BOY, YOU’RE HAVING A GIRL: A Dad’s Survival Guide to Raising Daughters, I felt like a complete and utter badass. Here’s why. Read more

How Can the Average Writer Make Money Self-Publishing E-Books?

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Writers are constantly asking themselves the same question: How can we make money self-publishing on digital platforms? Here’s the latest on the e-book marketplace.
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Breaking Out of TV and Into Novel Writing

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With no algorithm or grasp of what an algorithm is, Peter Mehlman has produced a slew of oppressively precise statistics here based on nothing. Despite his mastery over a calculator being limited to subtraction, his statistics should compare favorably to the exactitude of say, the Nielsen ratings, so here it goes … Read more

Writing: Is It a Hobby or a Job?

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The question many writers often face when asking themselves about their writing is: Is it a hobby or job? Let’s explore and see if we can put an end to the debate. Read more

The 8 Secrets of Great Copywriting

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Forty years as a copywriter has taught Pat Fagan that copywriting is part trench work, part cliff diving, part Hemingway, a little Lewis and Clark, and all about telling the truth. During his career, he learned a lot from working with the industry’s most talented giants. Here are their best tips. Read more

5 Ways to Make the Ordinary Menacing in Your Suspense Novel

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Suspense happens when a scene becomes charged with anticipation. It’s the possibility of what might happen that keeps the reader on the edge of her chair. Here’s how to add suspense to everyday scenes that appear in your novel. Read more

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