November/December 2014 Issue
Free Writing Downloads
Workshops Starting November 1st
- Blogging 101
- Social Media 101
- Writing Children's Picture Books
- Conflict & Suspense Writing
- Write Great Dialogue
- Revision and Editing
- Science Fiction and Fantasy
- Form and Composition
- Turning Personal Stories in to Memoir
- The Art of Storytelling 102: Showing vs. Telling
Workshops Starting November 6th
- Blogging 101
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.
You need stamina to transform that out-of-shape first draft into a story with staying power. Use these 4 revision strategies to make your novel go the distance.
by Lin Enger
Here are the essential specs for a successful synopsis. Bookmark this page and always cross-reference before sending out any synopsis.
Writers often find that the synopsis is the most difficult component of their novel submission package. Here we break it down for you so you can spend less time stressing and more time writing.
by Chuck Sambuchino and the Editors of Writer’s Digest Books
In this excerpt from 179 Ways to Save a Novel, author Peter Selgin discusses ways to defeat the writer’s sworn enemy: the cliche. Read more
Here are 10 common query letter mistakes that could get your idea rejected.
by Ann Rittenberg
Here are the tools you need to write a query letter that sets you apart from the pack.
by Ann Rittenberg
Never underestimate the power of suspense—in any genre. Use these surefire techniques to make your book one readers won’t be able to put down.
by Elizabeth Sims
Everything needed to learn invaluable and timeless techniques for writing science fiction and fantasy, as well as tips for building an entirely new and believable world.
Transposing your own powerful feelings, opinions, joys and sadness to your characters, every day, is the way to instill in your pages the wisdom that is living inside your novel—and you.
by Donald Maass Read more
Concerned that friends and family will be upset by what you write about them (even if it’s in the context of your life)? These tips gleaned from top essayists may keep you from ending up in a sticky situation with your writing.
by Kim Schworm Acosta
The trick to a great title is to find a happy balance between the all-too-forgettable and the truly over-the-top. You want to choose something that makes your readers think: What a fantastic title! Why didn’t I come up with it? Here’s how to do just that.
by Jacob M. Appel
How do you follow up a smash hit like The Time Traveler’s Wife? For artist and author Audrey Niffenegger, it all comes down to embracing the freedom to create—on your own terms.
by Jessica Strawser
Answer the following questions for each of your main characters to help figure out how each one fits in your novel.
by Leigh Michaels
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
Here are 4 simple exercises to help you invent characters for your fiction.
by Nancy Kress
Push forward your writing (and your career) even when the phone isn’t ringing.
by Art Spikol
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 Whitcomb