Writing Animated Characters

Writing Animated Characters

It’s nearly Fall! The pumpkins are busy plumping, cats are knocking stuff over and our fictional characters could use a little more sparkle—NaNoWriMo is almost here. Writing Tip for Today: Here are some ideas for pumping some 3-D spice into your fictional characters: The Unique Character Most writers will admit, if they’re honest, that their […]

When Is a POV Error a Problem?

When Is a POV Error a Problem?

Ask any veteran writer about POV (Point of View) and the advice is almost always the same: Don’t head-hop, change POV only at chapter or scene breaks, tell the most compelling character’s version of events. Most of the time, this is solid advice, meant to keep readers from becoming confused. But there’s always an exception. […]

Waiting for Morning

The original title of the book I wanted to write about my journey with three grown sons who are addicted to drugs and/or alcohol was IF MORNING EVER COMES. That if is important. If reflects my decades of praying, hoping, enabling, toughing, failing and flailing, all while desperately trying to keep hope alive. I’ve been […]

How Deep POV Elicits Emotions

How Deep POV Elicits Emotions

My friend C.S. Lakin, over at LiveWriteThrive, has just unveiled her latest writing course: Handling character emotions. Conveying emotion is so important! You can check it out here. Meanwhile, let’s take a look at how using Deep POV can help you convey emotion in your fiction. Writing Tip for Today: How can Deep POV help […]

Writing Your Story’s Set-up

Writing Your Story’s Set-up

To write a story, you just plunge in and go, right? I favor this don’t-edit-while-you-draft method. But in revision, how you set-up your story is crucial to readers. Writing Tip for Today: Let’s discuss the important elements of story set-ups: Timing is Everything Set-ups differ from your story’s setting. The where and when of your […]

Writers Beware: Micro-managing

Writers Beware: Micro-managing

Since it’s August, I thought it might be good to trot out some easily avoided fiction mistakes I see in student work. Micro-management is what I call the tendency to over-regulate how readers experience a scene or description. Writing Tip for Today: Here are three simple fixes for eliminating micro-management from your writing: My Right […]

Pitch Your Writing: Tips

Pitch Your Writing: Tips

It’s writing conference season, and many writers I know will put egos on the line to pitch their books. But is your novel “done” enough to warrant this leap of faith? Writing Tip for Today: Although writers are often anxious to get their writing into an editor or agent’s hands, we sometimes jump the gun. […]

Writing Your Novel’s Middle

Writing Your Novel’s Middle

We’ve discussed endings and openings. Now let’s look to one of a novel’s most critical spots: its midpoint. Writing Tip for Today: What are some ways to improve a novel’s middle? Act II Rising The middle of a novel consists of the bulk of Act II in the classic three-act structure. The most important aspect […]

Writing Your Novel’s Opening

Writing Your Novel’s Opening

Whether you’re writing your first or your fiftieth novel, you will most likely need to revise your opening pages last. It’s a tall order for most of us—after all, we understand the importance of first impressions. Readers will usually only give a story a page or two (sometimes only a sentence or two!) to decide […]

Writing Your Novel’s Ending

Writing Your Novel’s Ending

Some readers love sweet story endings. Others want more realistic or nuanced finishes. Either way, readers will demand that your novel have a satisfying ending. Writing Tip for Today: Here are some little reminders for nailing that novel ending: Short and Sweet Your novel’s ending begins just after your climax scene. If you proceed to […]