Literary Fiction Writing

If your passion is for literary fiction, you’ll find guidelines for mastering plot, character, setting, dialogue and more right here. You’ll also get insights into selling your work and getting it published.

When Does Black Women’s Fiction Become Just Women’s Fiction?

When does black women’s fiction become just women’s fiction? To answer that question, we’d first have to establish the difference between the two. Some might argue that it’s the characters, others might say themes or cultural perspective. After reflecting on this for years, I concluded that the biggest thing that separates...

9 Practical Tricks for Writing Your First Novel

Whether you're writing your first novel or are struggling with completing a second one (or more), sometimes you need some help focusing and figuring out how to reach your goal. Use these 9 tricks to help you go from first sentence all the way to completed novel.

5 New Year’s Resolutions for Writers

A new year, a new writerly you. New Year’s Day is a time for reflecting on the past year while thinking about the goals, wishes, and hopes for the new year ahead. What does this mean for your writing goals? Maybe 2013 is the year you finish your novel. Maybe it’s...

4 Ways to Revise as You Write

Writers differ in their opinions of the revision process. Some balk at it–they see it as the “no fun” part of writing, and much prefer drafting and creation to fixing and rethinking. Other writers embrace the process and consider it an act of strengthening, polishing, and ultimately making their novel the...

Write Fiction that Grabs Readers from Page One

In your novel, the inciting incident is the first sign of trouble for your protagonist: it’s the catalyst, the chemical reaction, that sets the plot into motion. But the inciting incident isn’t only important for your main character. Understanding how to harness it is also crucial to hooking your reader from...

Writing 21st Century Fiction: A Sneak Peek

Donald Maass, bestselling author of Writing the Breakout Novel and The Fire in Fiction, now takes an in-depth, comprehensive look at the craft and method of writing 21st century fiction. You might be asking, “What exactly is 21st century fiction?” Read this exclusive sneak peek from Writing 21st Century Fiction to...

Questions to Ask (& Strengthen) Your Minor Characters

If your supporting characters aren’t working toward an understanding of the main character or situation in some way, you might ask yourself what they’re really doing there, hogging time and space in your book. Here are questions to ask about your minor characters to make sure they have a purpose.
fiction writing | getting published

The 21 Key Traits of Best-Selling Fiction

Do you wonder want readers want? In today’s writing tip, you’ll discover the 21 key traits of best-selling fiction excerpted from The Writer’s Little Helper by James V. Smith, Jr. The 21 Key Traits of Best-Selling Fiction Utility (writing about things that people will use in their lives) Information (facts people...