Weekly Round-Up: Seasonal Writing

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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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'Tis the Season...

...for buying gifts, reflecting on the past, and making plans for the future. Check out our recommendations for observing seasonal traditions:

  • If you're still searching for the perfect gift for a writer, find the perfect present with our Holiday Gift Guide 2016.
  • While reflecting on your personal growth over the past year, check out advertisements from past issues of WD and see how much we've changed in our 97 years.
  • You may be planning a 2017 resolution to write more. Instead of making vague or unrealistic writing plans, prepare for the new year with purpose and self-understanding by writing your manifesto.
  • Another way to understand and revitalize your writing habits is to track the way you spend your time and adjust as needed. Here are 9 Reasons for Writers to Keep a Time Log.

Author Insights and Practical Tips

Our names are part of our identities. Discover the complications involved in Naming a Newly Published Author. Then learn from someone else's experience by reading 7 Things I’ve Learned So Far, by Sarah Maine.

When trying to add depth to your character, try applying this concept from HBO's WestworldFigure out your character's cornerstone. You can also use internal dialogue to develop character and achieve multiple other effects.

Trying to make your readers laugh? Read Leigh Anne Jasheway's advice on How to Add Humor to Your Novel During Revision.

Poetic Asides

The 2016 November PAD Chapbook Challenge is over. If you participated in the challenge, you have until January 15, 2017 to revise your poems and submit your manuscript for judging. Use these 4 Poetry Chapbook Strategies as you prepare your manuscript.

Looking for some inspiration to write new poems? This week's poetic form challenge is to try out a landay, and our weekly poetry prompt is to write a "pop" poem.

If you already have a full stockpile of poems, read an interview with Amorak Huey, author of poetry collection Ha Ha Ha Thump, for some tips on the publication process for poetry.


This week, we have two new literary agents to tell you about. Maximilian Ximenez of L. Perkins Agency is looking for science fiction, fantasy, horror, and thrillers, and nonfiction in the categories of popular science, true crime, and arts and trends. Jen Hunt of The Booker Albert Literary Agency is looking for historical fiction, science fiction, fantasy, and steampunk/gaslight/dieselpunk, all preferably with some romantic element.

Finally, you still have a few more days to sign up for our agent one-on-one boot camp, How to Find and Keep a Literary Agent, starting on December 12. Spots are limited, so sign up while you still can!


Writing Mistakes Writers Make: Relying on Perfect Conditions to Write

The Writer's Digest team has witnessed many writing mistakes over the years, so we started this series to help identify them for other writers (along with correction strategies). This week's writing mistake writers make is relying on perfect conditions to write.

writer's digest wd presents

WD Presents: Contest Deadline Announcement and a Flash Fiction Challenge

This week, we’re excited to announce the deadline for our Self-Published Book Awards, the guidelines for the upcoming Flash Fiction Challenge, and more!


For the Travel and Nature Writer: Keeping Your Mind Sharp and Words Insightful

Dr. Caitlin O'Connell shares some insight for travel and nature writers, including how travel helps keep your mind sharp and words insightful, whether you're writing fiction, nonfiction, sports, politics, or something else entirely.


Olga Grushin: The No Man's Land Between Genres

Award-winning author Olga Grushin discusses what it meant to wade into a new genre and how she put her spin on the fairy tale retelling.

Poetic Forms

Rannaigecht Mor Gairit: Poetic Forms

Poetic Form Fridays are made to share various poetic forms. This week, we look at the rannaigecht mor gairit, a variant form of the rannaigecht.


The Writer, The Inner Critic, & The Slacker

Author and writing professor Alexander Weinstein explains the three parts of a writer's psyche, how they can work against the writer, and how to utilize them for success.


Todd Stottlemyre: On Mixing and Bending Genres

Author Todd Stottlemyre explains how he combined fiction and nonfiction in his latest book and what it meant as a writer to share his personal experiences.


Plot Twist Story Prompts: Take a Trip

Every good story needs a nice (or not so nice) turn or two to keep it interesting. This week, have a character take a trip somewhere.


Making the Switch from Romance to Women’s Fiction

In this article, author Jennifer Probst explains the differences between romance and women's fiction, the importance of both, and how you can make the genre switch.