You’re stuck on a question about how to use a writing device, and off to the Internet/library/bookstore you go. Perhaps you stop after article number one, thinking certainly this must be the definitive answer, because this publishing professional has game to spare. She may well, but still your search should continue. Why? Click the title above to continue reading.
Reading a book is like jumping on an exercise bike for the brain. The reason is because every sentence is a piece of information the reader needs to process. Some sentences are easier to absorb than others. For instance, a sentence that speaks about characters, themes, and plots the reader has already gotten to know doesn’t require as much processing as a sentence introducing new characters, sub-themes, or subplots. We want readers to keep pedaling and processing this new information, but as so often happens in books, there comes a point when the reader decides to take a break. Click the title above to continue reading.
An old creative writing teacher gave the class some advice I’ll never forget. When it comes to story ideas, it’s best to ride around on the bus with it. In other words, take time to process and decide if it’s the best story and/or story direction. In my mind, there are two types of riding-around-on-the-bus-with-it: intentional and unintentional. Click the title above to continue reading.
A change of venue gets my creative juices flowing, helps me focus without all the usual distractions, and gives me incentive to write toward concrete goals. Basically, it’s great for everything except my wallet. Here are my budget writing retreat options. Click the title above to continue reading.
In my opinion, the editor is always right . . . about the existence of a problem. What they’re less often right about IMHO is identifying exactly what the problem is, nor are they always right about what the best solution is, nor is it always a problem that should be fixed. Click the title above to continue reading.
My first editor, back before I switched genres, gave me some advice about believability issues in my manuscript that I’ll never forget. Click the title above to continue reading.
The five methods I describe for brainstorming villains are most applicable if your manuscript or screenplay contains at least an element of the thriller, suspense, or horror genres. Click on the title above to continue reading.