Tag: writing advice


Don’t Use Five-Dollar Words Articles / On Writing

Mark Twain is credited with saying a lot of things. Some will argue that not everything attributed to him actually originated with him, but he’s one of my go-to guys for helpful quotes. There’s actually one over my desk that reads: Keep away from people who try to belittle your ambitions. Small people always do that, but the really great make you feel that you,...

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Articles / On Writing

Surround Yourself With Diversity   Someone once said, “Write what you know.”  We’ve all heard it before. And if taken literally… well, that’s a scary thing. Because I’m not that certain I know all that much about anything interesting. But I’m pretty sure the phrase wasn’t meant to be taken literally, at least not the way I look at it. I look at it as...

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Recs

Divas Recommend: 4 Great Reasons Why Your Hero Needs A Special Skill or Talent by Angela Ackerman   Is your hero unique? Does he have the character traits that make your readers want to cheer him on? Is he someone your readers will fall in love with? For today’s Divas Recommend, Diva Jen chose this fabulous article by Angela Ackerman from Writers Helping Writers called...

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Articles / On Writing

Indirect and Direct Action in Your Writing   Something I’ve noticed more and more as I read—and edit—is the use of what I’ll call indirect action, for lack of a formal title. What I mean is the kind of writing where the sentence is formatted so that the action lies at the feet of the observer instead of the actor. A few examples of what...

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Articles / On Writing

Treating Your Writing Like A Full-Time Job   Recently, I edited a book where one of the main characters, a musician, spent several months treating his songwriting as a full-time job. He would get up, spend eight hours a day writing songs—some better than others, obviously—and then he’d call it a day, have dinner, and start again the next day. It forced the artist to...

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Articles / On Writing

The Benefits of a Style Sheet Some authors write according to an outline, and others have a less-organized series of events they want to describe. There are authors who write their scenes sequentially, no matter how great or small, and those who write major scenes first and minor scenes last. I’ve even known one writer who wrote all her sex scenes first—she said they were...

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Articles / On Editing

Divas on Editing: Line Editing When I saw that I was writing an article about line editing, I laughed out loud. And then I panicked. Line editing has been a sort of abstract concept to me, something in the periphery that I never quite understood. For me, editing started out as a very definitive exercise; my first editing experience was beta reading for a friend, and...

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Recs

So, you got your manuscript back from your content editor, and the first thing she said was, “Where’s the conflict? Everyone’s too nice and perfect.” What do you do? Well, you’re in luck because this week the Divas recommend Tips to Maximize Conflict in Your Novel from social media expert and author Kristen Lamb, who is the author of We Are Not Alone—The Writer’s Guide to Social...

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Guest Post: Dealing With Criticism by T.M. Franklin Guest Posts

I’m so excited about today’s guest blogger—she’s one of my favorite authors and favorite people. Today, the fabulous T.M. Franklin discusses dealing with criticism of your manuscript. Five Tips for Dealing with Criticism by T.M. Franklin You’ve come up with the idea, written the words, prettied and polished it up until it’s perfect, and then someone—an editor, reviewer, a blogger—says those words every author dreads....

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Articles / On Writing

Keep it Simple, Silly!   KISS: Keep It Simple, Silly. That’s a cleaned-up version of a mantra most of us have heard time and time again. Keep it simple. And I’d never call anyone… well, you know. So silly works better for me. I find I use the word simplify rather often in my notes to authors, and it struck me that this could be...

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