How to Start Writing a Book, 1st Chapter

Sometimes there’s nothing worse for a writer than a blank screen, just waiting to be filled in. Here you’ll find guidelines, advice, and inspiration for taking those first steps from blank page to finished piece. You’ll also find resources to help you learn how to write a novel in three months or fewer and practical tips on writing a book made easy.

Beginnings

Read chapter 9, "Beginnings," from The Glimmer Train Guide to Writing Fiction, Volume 1: Building Blocks

10 Basic Ingredients of a Successful Thriller

At the 2008 Maui Writers Conference, bestselling thriller writer Gary Braver (Skin Deep) said that dread drives thrillers. You know who the good guys and bad guys are. Dull moments will lose an audience, and writers can't afford to lose an audience, even for one page. To captivate an audience (and...

Fiction: Point of View

How many times have you heard this around the workshop table: “Why don’t you consider a new point of view?” (Actually, the term used more often is “POV” because it sounds a lot cooler, I suspect.) Everyone then agrees that a new POV might help matters, including the writer, who knew...

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...

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.

8 Basic Writing Blunders

These big-picture writing errors might make you cringe with recognition. But shake it off: Bestselling novelist Jerry B. Jenkins will help you fix them.

by Jerry B. Jenkins