Rock That Opening Scene

Writing YA teaches you an important tenet. Teens are impatient. They crave quick results along with action, high stakes, energy, conflict, dialogue. When writing for teens you need to grab them by the throat and squeeze, tight. (Sort of what you want to do them in real life every now and again.) But really, doesn’t …
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Walking the Tightrope: Embodying yesteryear, while embracing today’s reader

When you write historical fiction, you face great scrutiny. The tiniest mistake, or an over abundance of details, and you will generate comments. Angry heated comments. In a sense, you are always walking a tightrope between crafting authentic sounding prose and creating intelligible prose. One wrong foot and everything comes crashing down. If you want …
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Outlining – Method 1: Basic Story Beats

Just as there are many ways to write a novel, there are many ways to outline a novel. You can use all the methods, one of the methods, or none of the methods. The choice is yours! Go nuts with the freedom! Myself, I use all of the outlining methods I will explain in the …
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A Stellar Opening Sentence

Once upon a time, in a far away land, there lived a very sad fairy princess.   I’ve accepted the painful truth. I’ve pretty much ruined reading for most of my gal pals. Eventually they bounce back, but each of them has admitted that after listening to me ramble on about the elements of great …
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You are mistaken, Mr. Darcy: How to use literature to build your fiction vocabulary

The ability to mass produce books gave birth to the popular novel, the Bronte Sisters, George Sand and perhaps one of the best-loved novelists of all time, Jane Austen. Since Austen’s first book was released over two centuries ago, people have studied her work. We love her books because they’re packed with social humor and …
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5 Reasons to Outline Your Novel

There are writers who come up with an idea and just start writing and see where the story takes them. There are writers who mull over a story in their minds for months or years before they start writing. There are writers who write short stories and use those to create a novel. Then there …
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Avoid Rejections by Making Sure Your MS is Agent Worthy

So, you’ve written a novel. Let’s admit it. Writing a book is hard. How many people have told you they’ve been thinking of writing a book too. And they say it like they mean it. But they don’t. And writing may be hard, but editing is downright painful; and knowing when you “finished” is nearly …
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