The WD Interview: Susan Orlean on The Library Book and Finding the Red-Hot Center of the Story
Susan Orlean talks to WD about the challenges of researching and writing The Library Book, and how libraries are meeting the needs of 21st century patrons.
In the Chorus That Surrounds Every Writer, Listen to the Voice That's Your Own
It is easy to get lost in the flurry of feedback you get after sharing your writing for critique. Lorraine Devon Wilke shares how not to lose track of your own voice in the process.
Moves and Counter-Moves: Letting Your Antagonist Drive the Plot
If you're having a hard time coming up with what your protagonist does in the middle of your story, it may help you to figure out what your antagonist is doing.
How to Fall in Love with the Writing Process: 6 Questions to Hone Your Creative Workflow
Plots and characters will come and go, but for successful writers, passion for the writing process burns on. Use these 6 questions from Bob Mayer to transform your creative method from craft into art.
How to Write Funny Dialogue: 5 Tips for Making Readers Laugh Out Loud
Playwright and author Stephen Evans explains how to write funny dialogue with these five key tips informed by neurology, rhythm, and theater.
Begin from the Middle: How to Start Your Story In Medias Res
By starting a story in the midst of action, writers can hook readers with a literary technique as old as the Greek epics—in medias res. Paul Buchanan explains.
From YA to YEAH: 4 Ways to Keep Teen & Young Adult Readers Hooked
Many YA authors are adults, which means the generation gap between these writers and their intended audience can make it easy to miss the mark. Teen writer (and avid reader) Lorena Koppel lays out four ways to make sure your YA novel meets young audiences' expectations and interests.
Paperback Writer: 10 Writing Lessons from Vintage Paperback Books
The advice to read widely is sound, but are you broadening your horizons enough? Forgotten paperback books from decades past can offer essential writing lessons as capably as any new hardback.
4 Writing Techniques to Borrow from Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol
Since its publication in 1843, Charles Dickens' novella A Christmas Carol has become one of the most iconic holiday stories in Western literature. Discover the top four techniques you can apply to your craft, regardless of what genre, age group or form you're writing for.
Perfect Stories: The Pursuit of Perfection & Surrendering Your Story to Your Readers
Sometimes finishing a story is the most unsatisfying part of writing. No matter how hard you work on it, you may still feel something is missing. William Kenower discusses this dissatisfaction, the quest for perfection, and the need to relinquish your story to your readers.
What Binge-Watching 'Stranger Things' Taught Me About Storytelling
As fans eagerly await Season 3 of Netflix hit series Stranger Things, Scott Hildreth offers three storytelling lessons and editing goals writers can glean from the show.
4 Essential Steps to Making Your Protagonist Real, Even When They’re Nothing Like You
Writing your protagonist always requires deep thought and consideration, but crafting believable, realistic protagonists who are nothing like you presents unique challenges. Author Donna Levin offers four essential tips to help you work through these challenges.
Surprise vs. Suspense and How to Pair Them in Your Writing
What's the difference between suspense and surprise, and how is each one powerful? Jane Cleland explains how to pair these two elements in your writing in this excerpt from her book Mastering Suspense, Structure & Plot.
10 Screenwriting Techniques Every Writer Can Employ
Applying these screenwriting techniques to your fiction can offer benefits like sharper dialogue, improved pacing and stronger characters.
Train Your Eye for Better Writing: 3 Writing Techniques Adapted from the Visual Arts
Three writing techniques from traditional visual arts training that can help you find a deeper, truer, and more vivid writing voice.
Superhero Sauce: Blending Pop Culture & Academic Disciplines in Nonfiction (+ a Quiz!)
In his book 'Superhero Ethics,' Travis Smith blended his knowledge of political philosophy with superhero mythos. By outlining his writing process and what he learned, he demonstrates how combining pop culture topics with academic disciplines can make for fun and accessible nonfiction books.
What a Coincidence: 7 Clever Strategies for Harnessing Coincidences in Fiction
Well-timed coincidences can catapult a story forward, but a poorly planned one can bring your readers to a dead stop. Use these 7 strategies to harness the power of this storytelling tool while steering clear of common missteps.
The Perception Gap: Using Character Perspective to Propel Your Plot
Your characters’ views of the world can do much more than simply define who they are. Jane Cleland discusses how to use character perspective to propel your plot.
The Power of Theme: Turning Books Into Movies
Books to Movies: Barri Evins reveals how to harness the power of theme to entice publishers, captivate readers, and attract the film and television industry.
18 Ways to Write Funnier Fast
We're not all comedy writers, but many of us want to write a funny story or incorporate funny scenes into a novel. In this excerpt from The Byline Bible, Susan Shapiro offers 18 quick and easy ways to improve at eliciting laughs from your readers.