If you find yourself having a difficult time sustaining one tone over a long work, try these three tricks.
Any story or novel is, in essence, a series of scenes strung together like beads on a wire, with narrative summary adding texture and color between. A work of fiction will comprise many scenes, and each one of these individual scenes must be built with a structure most easily described as having a beginning,...
Considering dialogue from a book proposal standpoint. by Jeff Gerke Poor dialogue is something you must not have in your submission package if you want agents and editors to keep reading and not toss your proposal on the reject stack. I know editors who will skip everything else in a proposal, go straight to...
Download a 26-day countdown poster with energy boosting ideas to fuel your marathon and track your accomplishments from Day 1 to Day 26. Write-A-Thon Poster 8.5×11 Write-A-Thon Poster 11×17 Need a speaker? Contact Rochelle to speak by phone with your critique group, NaNoWriMo region, or book group: firstname.lastname@example.org About the...
Q&A with Rochelle Melander, author of Write-A-Thon Need a speaker? Contact Rochelle to speak by phone with your critique group, NaNoWriMo region, or book group: email@example.com How many books have you written in 26 days or less? Five! I wrote Write-A-Thon in 26 days during National Novel Writing Month in 2009. Of course, I...
Need a speaker? Contact Rochelle to speak by phone with your critique group, NaNoWriMo region, or book group: firstname.lastname@example.org Avoid Overwhelm From Write-A-Thon by Rochelle Melander Being a poet is one of the unhealthier jobs—no regular hours, so many temptations! —Elizabeth Bishop In a study on choice, students reported better satisfaction with their work...
Write-A-Thon: Write Your Book in 26 Days (and Life to Tell About it) by Rochelle Melander Writer’s Digest Books, 2011 ISBN-13: 978-1-59963-391-6 ISBN-10: 1-59963-391-4 $16.99 paperback, 240 pages Buy the book! Read an Excerpt! Find out how to avoid getting overwhelmed in the midst of your writing marathon. Free Webinar: September 27! Are...
Can a virtual critique group really be as good as meeting face to face? If you make the most of the format, it could be even better. Here’s how.
Donald Miller is the author of multiple New York Times Bestsellers including Blue Like Jazz and A Million Miles in a Thousand Years. He has served on the Presidential Task Force on Fatherhood and Healthy Families and is a sought after speaker regarding narrative structure as it relates to a persons life and their...
Kristin Hannah (kristinhannah.com) is The New York Times bestselling author of 18 novels, including the blockbusters Firefly Lane, True Colors and Winter Garden, and, most recently, Night Road. You’ve said the seed of your writing was first planted by your mother, not long before she passed away. Does that still influence the types of...
Paula McLain’s latest book is the bestselling The Paris Wife, a fictional account of Ernest Hemingway’s first marriage and upstart years in 1920s Paris, told from the point of view of his wife, Hadley. The author of two poetry collections, a memoir and an earlier novel, McLain holds a Master of Fine Arts in...
At some point in writing your novel, you have to start thinking about “chaptering,” the process of deciding exactly when and where your chapter breaks will go. Here are three simple, essential techniques that can help you make effective chapter pauses.
by Aaron Elkins
Award-winning writing, quick-witted characters and the kind of suspense every reader craves—his books may be classified under mystery or thriller, but Harlan Coben seems to have it all. And he’s willing to share his secrets.
by Jessica Strawser
To make characters seem real, you need to tap into what drives them. Use this foolproof method to bring the emotion of your story to life.
by David Corbett
A good opening line is a powerful thing: It can grab an editor’s attention, set the tone for the rest of the piece, and make sure readers stay through The End. Here are 10 ways to steer your story toward success.
If you think you’ve heard all you need to know about what drives a plot, think again. Here’s the real stuff the best stories are made of.
by Steven James
Most of the time, we want to balance our scenes using dialogue, action and narrative to engage readers at an emotional level and keep them hooked. Here's how to do that.
by Gloria Kempton
Structural problems can sink a novel. Let’s look at 10 common plot problems and how to quickly fix them.
by Elizabeth Sims
Don’t be afraid to make things hard on your characters. You should always come up with several different problems to choose from. Here are 3 ways to do that.
by Victoria Lynn Schmidt
Here’s editor Anica Mrose Rissi’s list of what you can do to increase your book’s chances of making it out of the slush pile and into the spotlight.
by Anica Mrose Rissi
Understanding gender differences can improve your writing in any genre. Here’s how.
by Leigh Anne Jasheway
Here are 4 quick exercises to make sure your characters speak to readers (and agents).
All stories contain four elements that can determine structure: milieu, idea, character and event. Here's a look at each one and how each will affect your novel.
by Orson Scott Card
According to bestselling authors JT Ellison, Alex Kava and Erica Spindler, there are 5 key ways to make your heroine shine. Here they are.
by Jessica Strawser, reporting from ThrillerFest 2010 (New York City)