15 Story Beats to Keep Your NaNoWriMo Novel on Track

Regardless of whether you’re a plotter or pantser, you might come to a place mid-month where your story feels like it’s gone off the rails. A lot of people will tell you to plow through! Just keep writing! It’ll work itself out! But I think better advice is to check in with your basic story beats. It …
Continue reading “15 Story Beats to Keep Your NaNoWriMo Novel on Track”

The Princess Bride Gender-Swapped!

Confession: I saw The Princess Bride for the first time last weekend. I know, I know, my childhood was lacking. There was only one movie theatre with one tiny screen in my town, and my parents said we were too poor to see movies in a theatre. So yeah. Fast forward 29 years later, and …
Continue reading “The Princess Bride Gender-Swapped!”

The Princess Bride: A Frame Narrative Worth Studying

Grab your black mask, strap on a sword and beware of Iocane powder. Westley, Buttercup and the rest of the Brute Squad are romancing the blogosphere with THE PRINCESS BRIDE Linkup Party. This weekend blogs everywhere will be sharing their favorite bits and bobs about the movie and the book. You’re invited to take part …
Continue reading “The Princess Bride: A Frame Narrative Worth Studying”

3 Tricks for Character Names

For a long time I hated naming my characters. No sooner did I settle on a name and I would realize another book (or three) used the same name. The main reason I got myself into this renaming mess was because I followed some widely accepted writing advice, I used charts of popular baby names …
Continue reading “3 Tricks for Character Names”

The Hero’s Emotional Midpoint

This week I’m honing the middle of my WIP, so it’s time to dust off the Archives and refresh my knowledge on a story’s midpoint… Originally posted on Aug. 4, 2014. Updated and reposted on Sept. 5, 2016. Awhile ago I wrote about Mapping the Mushy Middle of a story. This is a plot-centric approach to …
Continue reading “The Hero’s Emotional Midpoint”

Pitching 101: The Elevator Pitch

Do a quick search for “elevator pitch” on the Internet, and most of the information will say it is a 60-second pitch of yourself or your product (in the case of writers, your book). But seriously, 60 seconds? What elevator takes that long? Unless you do this: Do NOT do this. Or this: After all, …
Continue reading “Pitching 101: The Elevator Pitch”

Pitching 101: Query Letters

The dreaded query letter! I think this pitch makes every writer slightly stressed out, and with good reason. It’s 250 words that might change your whole life. No pressure there! But before we get busy talking about some tips, let’s review the two cardinal rules of querying: Rule 1: Never give an agent an easy …
Continue reading “Pitching 101: Query Letters”