Writing Advice That Saves You in 5 Years

Janis Hubschman

I just discovered this wonderful article, “Steal This List,” by Janis Hubschman (featured in the latest Glimmer Train bulletin). It features advice that’s worth saving over a period of years—the kind of advice that’s critical to planning, writing, and revision. Here’s a taste:

When the story stalls, ask: what is the character thinking now? Is she thinking anything? If not, why not? Characters need to learn something about themselves, about their values and assumptions.

To gain insight into a character, consider her history: Think about what happened before the story, what tortuous path led the character to this particular moment?

Allow the character to misinterpret another character’s words or actions. In life, we often misread a situation, jump to conclusions. Interesting things can happen when characters make presumptions or project their own hang-ups onto others.

Read more wonderful gems from Hubschman right here. Or go browse other articles in the latest Glimmer Train bulletin.

Posted in Writing Advice.

Jane Friedman (@JaneFriedman) has 20 years of experience in the publishing industry, with expertise in digital media strategy for authors and publishers. She is the co-founder and editor of The Hot Sheet, the essential newsletter on the publishing industry for authors.

In addition to being a columnist for Publishers Weekly, Jane is a professor with The Great Courses, which released her 24-lecture series, How to Publish Your Book. Her book for creative writers, The Business of Being a Writer (University of Chicago Press), received a starred review from Library Journal.

Jane speaks regularly at conferences and industry events such as BookExpo America, Digital Book World, and the AWP Conference, and has served on panels with the National Endowment for the Arts and the Creative Work Fund. Find out more.

6
Join the conversation

avatar
6 Comment threads
0 Thread replies
0 Followers
 
Most reacted comment
Hottest comment thread
1 Comment authors
Writing Advice That Saves You in 5 Years | Jane Friedman | Creating a Learning Commons | Scoop.itWriting Advice That Saves You in 5 Years | Jane Friedman | 6-Traits Resources | Scoop.itWriting Advice That Saves You in 5 Years | Jane Friedman | Teaching Digital Writing | Scoop.it4th Annual PlotWriMo and Craft Gems To Share | The Passionate ProtagonistShirley Pearson Recent comment authors

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

  Subscribe  
newest oldest most voted
Notify of
Marion Spicher
Marion Spicher

Thanks for sharing the Hubschman Blog containing writing gems,  I’ll be spending some time there.  Wishing you a great weekend!

Shirley Pearson
Shirley Pearson

This can be a tricky area in writing but something I love doing.  It’s easy to overdo it but, if done right, can really enrich characters.  

trackback
4th Annual PlotWriMo and Craft Gems To Share | The Passionate Protagonist

[…]  Also came across some gems on craft from Janis Hubschman via this post from Jane Friedman. “When the story stalls, ask: what is the character thinking now? Is she […]

trackback

[…] Writing Advice That Saves You in 5 Years | Jane Friedman […]

trackback

[…] Writing Advice That Saves You in 5 Years | Jane Friedman […]

trackback
Writing Advice That Saves You in 5 Years | Jane Friedman | Creating a Learning Commons | Scoop.it

[…] background-position: 50% 0px ; background-color:#222222; background-repeat : no-repeat; } janefriedman.com – Today, 10:26 […]