Writing Your First Draft

You have a great opening. You’re pretty sure you have a terrific ending. But the middle? It drags! Maybe you’re even starting to lose interest. Well look here for the help you need in making that middle just as compelling as the rest of the story – exciting enough that you’re compelled to finish, and finish well! We’ll also teach you how to write a novel in three months or fewer.

Writer’s Workout Exclusive

Download a free motivational poster to keep you moving as your build your writing career. Read an Excerpt! Learn how to cultivate clarity, inventory ideas, write richly, and serve up words. About the Book Find out more ways to cross train your writing career in The Writer’s Workout by Christina Katz.

Writer’s Workout Excerpt

Excerpt from The Writer’s Workout by Christina Katz CULTIVATE CLARITY When you write something needlessly prolix and convoluted, there’s a reason for it, and that reason is usually a lack of clarity and purpose going on. —Robert Masello The reader shouldn’t have to do all the work. Recently I picked up a magazine and...

Writer’s Workout

The Writer’s Workout: 366 Tips, Tasks, & Techniques from Your Writing Career Coach by Christina Katz Writer’s Digest Books, 2011 ISBN-13: 978-1-59963-179-0 ISBN-10: 1-59963-179-2 $19.99 paperback, 384 pages Buy the Book! Read an Excerpt! Learn how to cultivate clarity, inventory ideas, write richly, and serve up words. Online Exclusive Download a free motivational poster...

Word Savvy Excerpt

 Attacking the Wrong-Word Problem From Word Savvy by Nancy Ragno Create a definite plan for carrying out your desire and begin at once, whether you’re ready or not, to put the plan into action. —Napoleon Hill This is the age of the computer. Why be concerned about choosing the right homonym or pronoun, or...

Word Savvy

Word Savvy: Use the Right Word Every Time, All the Time by Nancy Ragno Writer’s Digest Books, 2011 ISBN-13: 978-1-59963-303-9 ISBN-10: 1-59963-303-5 $14.00 paperback, 224 pages Buy the Book! Read an Excerpt! Learn how to attack wrong-word problems in your writing. Online Exclusive Download 3 free bookmarks with 10 nouns, adjectives, and verbs everyone...

10 Ways to Launch Strong Scenes

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,...

Write-A-Thon Poster

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: rochelle@writenowcoach.com About the...

Write-A-Thon Interview

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: rochelle@writenowcoach.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...

Write-A-Thon Excerpt

Need a speaker? Contact Rochelle to speak by phone with your critique group, NaNoWriMo region, or book group: rochelle@writenowcoach.com 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-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...

Write a How-to Article in 6 Easy Steps

A how-to is written as a sequence—first you do this, and then you do this. The essential question the writer asks herself when writing a how-to is, “What happens next?” If you are about to embark on a how-to, start at what you consider the beginning, and just keep answering that question over and...

Ask the Pro: Editorial Manager Deborah Werksman

Editorial Manager Deborah Werksman is seeking romance novels, series and trilogies in the paranormal, time travel, romantic suspense, historical, contemporary and erotic genres for Sourcebooks Casablanca. She is also interested in innovative women’s fiction, as well as international and historical fiction. For submission guidelines, visit ...

Free Money for Writers

Grants, fellowships and residencies offer both support and opportunity—and all they ask in return is that you follow your writing dreams. Here’s what you need to know about some of the best opportunities you could be missing.

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How to Take Your Short Stories to the Next Level

Are you writing a short story? The first short story I ever wrote was in the 6th grade. It was about a fictitious solar system of salad toppings. No joke. I remember pacing around the house, dictating ideas, plot and dialogue into my mom's hand-held tape recorder and, eventually, piecing it all together into...

One Simple Way to Sharpen Your Pitch

As anyone who’s ever tried to come up with one of those vital one-sentence pitches for their book knows, getting it right can be maddening. Here, courtesy of bestseller Jon Land, is one particularly sharp strategy to take your elevator pitch to new heights. ThrillerFest’s AgentFest pitch slam took place yesterday, and literary agents...

Memoir Spotlight: Jeannette Walls

Jeannette Walls is the author of The Glass Castle, a memoir with more than 3 million copies in print, and Half Broke Horses, a bestselling true-life novel based on her grandmother. She lives in the Virginia piedmont with her husband, John Taylor. Does the type of writing you’re doing (nonfiction, memoir, fiction) alter your...

Women’s Fiction Spotlight: Kristin Hannah

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...

Historical Fiction Spotlight: Paula McLain

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...

Plot Like a Bestseller: 8 Things You Should Know

What’s the key to plotting a hit book? Well, just ask William Bernhardt, who hit The New York Times bestseller list with his Ben Kincaid series. As Bernhardt revealed in his CraftFest session “Plotting the Bestselling Thriller”: 1. Plot is the writer’s choice of events to tell the story of the character’s progression toward...