Creative Nonfiction Writing

Nonfiction covers everything from history and cooking to self help and travel. Here you’ll find learn how to master nonfiction writing, how to conduct good research, collect data, and convey a sense of authority in your work – no matter what you choose to write.

More Big 10 Writer

As part of Writer’s Digest magazine’s special September “Big 10 Issue”, we whipped up a set of tongue-in-cheek staff listings to run in the InkWell section. And we had so much fun compiling the staff picks that we couldn’t stop there.

Motivate Your Characters Like a Pro

In his session “The Psychology of Character Motivation,” Edgar-nominated author D.P. Lyle, MD, shared this invaluable exercise for developing your characters’ motivations as your story unfolds.

by Jessica Strawser, reporting from ThrillerFest 2010 (New York City)

Evoke Emotions in Your Readers

Based on the amateur memoirs I’ve read, I think the most common mistake—the mistake most likely to damage the readability of your book—is becoming a slave to chronology.

by Steve Zousmer

How to Weave in Backstory to Reveal Character

Creating characters’ backstories before you start writing is crucial because you’ll want to determine each one’s past experiences and the repercussions these experiences will have on your story before you begin. Here's a close look at the different ways you can introduce backstory.

by Rachel Ballon

How to Build a Marketing Platform

Here are 10 simple steps that will take your visibility from zero to standout in a short time, while also giving you ample opportunities to flex your expertise, carve out your niche topic and connect with your audience.

by Christina Katz

11 Plot Pitfalls – And How to Rescue Your Story From Them

We’ve all been there: basking in the glow of a finished manuscript, only to read it over and realize something is wrong with the plot. Finding ourselves unable to identify the problem only makes matters worse. But take heart! Here are some common plot gaffes and sensible ways to revise without starting over.

by Laura...

The Roeder Report:
Escaping the Slush Pile

Your novel is finished. If you’re like most writers, you put months, maybe years, into writing it and then you proofread it through the envelope on the way to the post office. But then what? What happens between the moment you send the manuscript off and the moment some intern turns a flamethrower on...

The Four Commandments of Writing Good Sentences

If you want to write a good sentence, don’t pay any attention to your grammar. I don’t mean “a sentence this like OK is.” I mean don’t automatically think you’ve written a good sentence just because it’s grammatically correct. Lots of bad sentences are grammatically correct....

Challenging the Limits of Memory

In this excerpt from Writing Life Stories, Bill Roorbach teaches you how to pay attention to and translate your memories and how to overcome your resistance to remembered places and events.