Author Archives: Nancy Kress

The Very Beginning: Your Opening Scene

In this excerpt from Chapter 1: The Very Beginning: Your Opening Scene from Nancy Kress’s Elements of Fiction Writing: Beginnings, Middles, & Ends, you’ll learn:
  • why it’s so important to establish your story’s promise
  • ...

Beginnings, Middles, & Ends

Find out more about Elements of Fiction Writing: Beginnings, Middles, & Ends by Nancy Kress.
  • Hook readers, agents, and editors in the first three paragraphs.
  • Make ...

Draw Characters From The Strongest Sources

Every drama requires a cast. The cast may be so huge or it may be an intimate cast of two. Where do you get these people, and how do you know they’ll make good characters? Here are the four key sources you'll need to create great characters.

by Nancy Kress

How to Write Successful Endings

Don't let your fiction get tossed in the wastebasket because the ending "didn't quite work." Follow Nancy Kress' advice for choosing a successful ending based on the style of your work.

Show and Tell

To show or to tell isn't a battle of good versus evil, but the skilled storyteller knows how to play each to maximum effect.

Crowd Control

How many characters belong in a scene, a story and a reader's head? Find out how to avoid fictional overpopulation.

3 Tips for Writing Successful Flashbacks

Most writers try to avoid flashbacks, but if you just can't resist sending your readers back in time, fiction columnist Nancy Kress has some advice. Kress explains what makes a flashback work, and how to perfect your own time traveling techniques.

Hold Them Back

Your fictional characters experience many emotions, but only one is absolutely essential to plot. Here's how to fuel your story with frustration.