Your memoir’s structure can reveal itself later, once the primary elements are in place. In the meantime, concentrate on scaffolding.
As an author, marketing your work will always be your job, but it doesn't have to be a chore. To do it well, think beyond self-promotion.
For writers who prefer to work without a roadmap, here are some tips for reaching your NaNoWriMo goals.
Envision your inner critic as an adjustable dial: turn it lower to let ideas flow freely, and higher when it’s time to analyze and revise.
Your story’s adversary might come in many shapes or sizes. Most important, ensure that the conflict they present has a reason for existing.
Just as coaches help athletes, writing coaches can help authors be more productive, proficient, and proud of what they accomplish.
Only a fraction of participants reach the finish line. Setting your sights on the more compact novella form might help you go the distance.
When sociopolitical discourse seems entrenched, good fiction can dig deeper with honest curiosity about all facets of the human experience.
Whatever your writing goals are in November, a bit of planning can help set you up for success.
Identifying your story’s “why”—why it haunts you, why you care—will give your book power that readers can feel.
An author who only set out to write one book wrestles with the question—do I really have a second book in me?
Time reshapes how we view and frame the chapters of our lives. Since a memoir inevitably can’t tell the whole story, we keep writing.
This is an introductory guide to the major self-publishing options available to authors today, and how to choose the right service for you.
In the last of a three-part series we examine the advantages and disadvantages of starting with theme, as opposed to character or plot.
Framing the overall story, as well as each scene within it, through these key elements will help create a consistently propulsive plot.
Writing in dual perspectives can easily tie you in knots, but it also opens the door to new opportunities between characters and story lines.
Both writing coaches and therapists dig deep, listen attentively, and meet regularly. But hiring one versus the other depends on your goals.
Masterful writers keep their readers in a constant state of tension. How to get tension on every page? By focusing on microtension.
What makes readers open a book and keep turning the pages? In part, curiosity and tension.
Writers focused on plot are often strong when it comes to world-building and “big ideas,” but there are inherent challenges as well.
Developing voice is important, but finding a topic that excites you—and others—could be a better first step for a new writer.
There are many kinds of memoir, with one thing in common: their authors must ultimately possess the ability to artfully render the moment.
During peer review, expert scholars evaluate your proposal. Their suggestions can improve your book if you synthesize them thoughtfully.
Publishing a book can be an exciting prospect which often ends in anticlimax. One indie author examines the emotional roller-coaster.
Fiction writers who start with character, as opposed to plot or theme, have certain advantages—and certain challenges.
Ideas are a dime a dozen. What matters is expressing an idea in ways that are unique to the artist and specific to the time and culture.
To create the alchemical magic of emotion in your fiction, you need to approach the challenge from more than one angle.
The most useful work is that which tests our limits and forces us to write something we didn’t realize we were capable of producing.
If you write knowing how the story will end, you’ll deprive readers of the tension that comes from putting obstacles in your characters’ way.
Freelance writing—even for little or no pay—offers a low-stakes way to gain publication credit, hone your skills, and raise your visibility.
Paying attention to your own visceral reactions and thoughts can help you create richly developed characters who leap off the page.
Showing the moments of normalcy brings the reader more fully into your life, and heightens the drama when traumatic events occur.
When you’ve finished your story, it’s time to step into a stewardship role to place it in the best position to connect with readers.
True forgiveness can take years to achieve. That’s why memoirs take longer to write than novels. But it’s worth the effort.
Identifying comparable titles helps agents and publishers understand where your book fits in the market and who your most likely readers are.
In writing memoir, internal voices—with competing interests—can emerge to inform the narrative. A rounded story is careful to balance them all.
One author struggles to prioritize between major writing projects when time and energy are limited.
What keeps many writers from a book deal isn’t a polished manuscript or proposal. It’s a sense of the publishing landscape as it really is.
When placed intentionally, crafted well, and set up via emotional context and backstory, scene might be the writer’s most powerful tool.
Without insight into how your characters will react in even the most mundane of circumstances, you aren’t ready to plan or pants your plot.
Word doesn't export to EPUB, but you can still produce an editable file quickly, without buying software or using a "meatgrinder" conversion.
Hybrid publishing is like hiring a contractor: You pay them to oversee the design and construction and, when it’s done, you own the result.
Mentorship programs are a popular way to gain knowledge and exposure, but as their popularity has risen the competition has gotten tougher.
Given that many of us sidestep endings in real life, it should not be surprising that writers have trouble concluding book projects.
Factual details can be great fuel for your writing, but it’s crucial to recognize when adherence to them is getting in the way of the story.
Misguided feedback, which can damage your manuscript, often arises from a common mistake: asking the right question of the wrong person.
Mom writers are wired to succeed at writing (and querying) because they can multitask like no other.
Deep third pulls readers into a character’s world view, but pronoun ambiguities and apparent point-of-view shifts push readers away. These 6 tips keep prose sharp.
Finding the right editor or critique partner is important, but so is being mentally prepared for the feedback you’ll receive.
Just as we might be conflict averse, it can be tempting to keep revising a story’s beginning instead of proceeding into the messy middle.