Author Archives: Donald Maass

Career Patterns That Work

In this excerpt from Career Patterns That Work from Donald Maass’s The Breakout Novelist, you’ll learn:
  • How to get off to a good start
  • How to answer the...

The Breakout Novelist

From Donald Maass's book The Breakout Novelist learn:
  • Get expert craft advice (from beginner to advanced) and insider career advice
  • Build your skills with over 70...

Exercise: Defining Personal Stakes

Without personal stakes, even the highest-voltage thriller can read like an empty plot exercise. Raise the personal stakes, and we will all care what happens in your story, whether the plot is boiling or not.

Exercise: Raising Public Stakes

How far do the public stakes in your novel-in-progress rise? How deep do they cut? How bad do they get? Take them higher and deeper. Make them worse—much worse. Your novel can only get better.

4 Techniques to Fire Up Your Fiction

Here are some exercises to apply to your novel-in-progress. They are designed to dig up what matters in your story and infuse it in your manuscript in effective—but not obvious—ways.

by Donald Maass