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Weekly Round-Up: Characters and Collections

Every week our editors publish somewhere between 10 and 15 blog posts—but it can be hard to keep up amidst the busyness of everyday life. To make sure you never miss another post, we've created a new weekly round-up series. Each Saturday, find the previous week's posts all in one place.

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Crafting Your Character

The reign of the Raymond Chandler-esque, male heroic detective is over; your detective can break Chandler's guidelines in any number of ways. If you want to write crime fiction with a female protagonist, this is what you need to know.

When creating characters with life experiences that differ vastly from your own, you do your research. When your character is a psychopath, Peter James's top five tips for getting into the mind of a psychopath will help you learn the best ways to research the disorder.

One of the most difficult characters to define? Our own. Read When Can You Call Yourself a "Real" Writer?—especially if you've every fallen prey to imposter syndrome.

Agents and Opportunities

Meet the Agent: Helen Adams of Zimmerman Literary is seeking nonfiction on the topics of wellness, relationships, popular culture, women’s issues, and music, as well as memoirs and reading group fiction.

You may have heard the term "literary scout" recently as an option for getting your manuscript to the publishers. Learn all about what literary scouts do, how they differ from agents, and what they could mean for you here.

Poetic Asides

For this week's Wednesday Poetry Prompt, write a "nothing better" poem. Then challenge yourself by trying out our first poetic form of 2017: the ottava rima.

This week's Poetry Spotlight shines on the Poetry Foundation in Chicago. Learn all about the poetry-related activities that this non-profit organizes.

If you've written a lot of poems, you may be wondering how other poets go about organizing them into collections. Read Collecting Poems into a Book: 5 Poets Share Their Method for some insight.

3 Things Being a Broadway Wig Master Taught Me About Storytelling

3 Things Being a Broadway Wig Master Taught Me About Storytelling

A career behind the curtain helped Amy Neswald in creating her own stories. Here, the author shares 3 things being a broadway wig master taught her about storytelling.

Plot Twist Story Prompts: Out of Control

Plot Twist Story Prompts: Out of Control

Every good story needs a nice (or not so nice) turn or two to keep it interesting. This week, let things get a little out of control.

November PAD Chapbook Challenge

2021 November PAD Chapbook Challenge: Next Steps

Here are the final steps for the 14th annual November PAD Chapbook Challenge! Use December and the beginning of January to revise and collect your poems into a chapbook manuscript. Here are some tips and guidelines.

NaNoWriMo’s Over … Now What?

NaNoWriMo’s Over … Now What?

After an intense writing challenge, you might feel a little lost. Here are some tips from Managing Editor and fellow Wrimo Moriah Richard for capitalizing on your momentum.

Ian Douglas: On Telling the Truth in Science Fiction

Ian Douglas: On Telling the Truth in Science Fiction

New York Times bestselling author Ian Douglas discusses how he incorporated implausible conspiracy theories to uncover the truth in his new science fiction novel, Alien Hostiles.

Poetry Prompt

Wednesday Poetry Prompts: 589

Every Wednesday, Robert Lee Brewer shares a prompt and an example poem to get things started on the Poetic Asides blog. This week, write a yesterday poem.

Revenge

Revenge

Every writer needs a little inspiration once in a while. For today's prompt, write about revenge.

Peter Fiennes: On Finding Hope in the Writing Process

Peter Fiennes: On Finding Hope in the Writing Process

Critically acclaimed author Peter Fiennes discusses his quest to find hope in his new travel/Greek mythology book, A Thing of Beauty.

November PAD Chapbook Challenge

2021 November PAD Chapbook Challenge: Day 30

For the 2021 November PAD Chapbook Challenge, poets are tasked with writing a poem a day in the month of November before assembling a chapbook manuscript in the month of December. Today's prompt is to write a The End and/or The Beginning poem.