Editors Blog

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.

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Do You Believe This?

Television can give us great breaks from the work of writing, even if we feel slightly guilty for watching. But we can temper our guilt by inviting our Inner Editor to sit beside us and show us what to avoid in our writing.

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#BannedBooksWeek: Why Banning Books is Wrong (& Better Solutions)

This week I helped celebrate #BannedBooksWeek by moderating a Google On Air panel of popular authors discussing why banning books does a disservice to readers everywhere (You won't believe the screengrab of my giant head that Google picked as the promo image. Anyway, the discussion led to some amazing points about the problems with...

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Cut Your Story Down to Size

Is your manuscript too long? Many of the queries I receive begin, “In my 200,000-word novel….” I stop right there. As I tell all of my clients, I can’t sell anything over 120,000 words by a first-time writer. “Help me cut it,” they say, knowing that I spent some 15 years as an editor...

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Don’t Be Afraid of Indie Publishing

Let me be clear­—I don’t take sides. I appreciate the self-published author, the author published by a small press, and the New York-published author. Because you know what? No matter what publishing route any of us decide to take, we are all still authors.

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Author Tim Powers Says “Trust the Cats”

Whenever there’s a loud noise outside my little back-room office, the cats all instantly look at me. (Somehow there are always at least two or three cats napping on my desk or on nearby bookshelves.) If I react to the noise — if I leap up in alarm, spilling my coffee and scattering notes...

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Fact-based Fiction

Everyone loves to pick up an escapist novel and just drift away into a world of romance, intrigue, or mystery. This was especially true for me while working as a correspondent and anchor for CNN for more than two decades. I would always grab a paperback on my way through the airport. The more...

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5 Tips from Ann Crispin, Co-Founder of Writer Beware

It's with a heavy heart that we mourn the passing of bestselling author Ann Crispin, co-founder of Writer Beware (you can read a short note about it here from Ann's close friend and Writer Beware counterpart Victoria Strauss). Ann contributed to Writer's Digest on several occasions and has long been an advocate of writers'...

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Tapping Your Inner Villain

BY ELIZABETH SIMS I find that writers are usually nice people. Nice people have a hard time understanding nasty people, let alone liking them. Let alone loving them! You must overcome this. Here's how.

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Confessions of a Story Coach

Larry Brooks is a story coach. And it isn’t always pretty. Which is a good thing, because the whole point, the reason this has value, is to learn from the mistakes of others. Here's what you can learn from others.

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4 Tips on the Publishing Experience

When it came time to launch my own book, The Listeners, I had a pretty good working knowledge of what had to be done, certainly more so than most first-time authors. But just as being an editor has informed the publishing experience, so is the publishing experience informing my role as editor, and I...

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5 Quotes on Writing from Elmore Leonard

We're saddened to hear about the passing of literary legend Elmore Leonard (I absolutely loved his book Get Shorty when I read it in high school). He was a great writer and will be remembered through his wonderful work for years and years to come. In honor of Leonard's passing, we've pulled five memorable...

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How to Give Your Character an Authentic Dialect

Try all you want to make the words unrecognizable—misspell them, cut them in half, throw in a fistful of apostrophes, sound out every groan the character makes—but the truth is, they are still words you’re dealing with. Here's how successfully write characters who have dialects.