On Filter Words – by Shaelin Bishop

You may or may not have seen me talking about Shaelin Bishop before; she's one of my favourite writers on youtube and I watched a video by her that is really important and incredibly helpful for editing your manuscript that I wanted to share with you all. It's only 5 minutes of your time, and I … Continue reading On Filter Words – by Shaelin Bishop

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Get Series-ous: Seven Things to Do Before Starting Your Series

Read Ruby’s super helpful advice on keeping your book series straight.

Though it may seem counterintuitive, writing a series is oftentimes easier than writing a stand alone book. For one, building your world, and the characters, settings and constructs within that world, is something you do only once, using the following books to add or expand, but not start from scratch. In many ways, an author becomes far more intimately acquainted with their story by writing a series, and that certainly aids in the writing process. 

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But though it has its many positives, the ability to market and sell for instance, there are certain pitfalls any writer can run into if they’re not careful. Taking these precautionary steps in advance will help you to minimize the challenges down the line and, hopefully, to produce better books.

* * *

Determine What Kind of Series it Is

Simple – are the books plot oriented or character oriented? Essentially, does the plot go…

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When You’re Failing at NaNoWriMo

Look guys, NaNo is huge. It's a massive undertaking that thousands of writers tackle every year. Many find success - hell, I've heard legends about people completing double-NaNo in November (I know, I struggle to comprehend it too!), but more importantly, there's also hundreds (thousands?) of us who don't reach the 50,000 word goal. And … Continue reading When You’re Failing at NaNoWriMo

Why You Should Consider Completely Scrapping Chapter One

Let's talk about the first chapter of a book and the reasons why I scrap chapter one. Chapter One: The Beginning. The first words of a story, the first scenes and events - for me - are equivalent to dipping your toes in the water, a temperature test, an experiment in preparation. Obviously, this will … Continue reading Why You Should Consider Completely Scrapping Chapter One

Useful Tips for Self-Editing a Manuscript

Sorry I haven’t been writing original content of late; I’ll talk through it during my next WIP Wednesday blog.

A Writer's Path

 

by Emily Nemchick

Whilst there is no substitute for hiring a professional editor, self-editing is an important skill for any writer to hone. For one thing, the more passes a manuscript gets, the fewer errors will remain in the final product. If you are using an editor, be sure to self-edit thoroughly first so they can focus on the things you have missed. If you are not using an editor, then self-editing is doubly essential. Here are a few tips to make sure you catch as many errors as possible.

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NO ADVERBS: The Reason Behind the Rule

Going Verbal

If you’ve read any guide about improving your writing, you’ve heard the “No Adverbs” rule. Cross them out, delete them, take a tiny lighter and burn a hole through every –ly word that dares rear its ugly head until your manuscript looks like Swiss cheese, but don’t you ever, under any circumstances, ever use an adverb!

… Really?

Come on, folks. Adverbs are perfectly functional members of language society. It’s not their fault they’re so easily misused.

Adverbs are descriptors for verbs and adjectives, just like adjectives are descriptors for nouns. They tend to end in –ly, though there are adverbs that don’t (fast, regardless, seldom) and other non-adverb words that do (lovely, imply, gravelly).

(To quote a certain pirate movie: “Hang the code, and hang the rules. They’re more like guidelines anyway.”)

The problem arises when you use an adverb to support a word that’s not pulling…

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To All the People-Pleasers Trying to Write for a Living

Novelty Revisions

There’s something you need to know.

Whether you’re a seasoned writer or you’re just starting out, sometimes one of the most difficult parts of the job is something completely unexpected.

It’s not the actual writing. It’s not accepting critiques, making changes, doing what’s asked of you.

Actually, it’s something internal.

It’s having the self-respect to assert your needs as a writer.

I’ve written probably one too many times here about how writers are treated by other people (most of the time, it’s not well). I don’t write often enough about how we treat ourselves.

Sometimes I think we forget that, even though all we do is sit in a chair and type stuff all day, things happen. We need to ask for things from others. And we’re often either made to feel like we shouldn’t, or don’t believe we deserve to.

There are many things we cannot change about ourselves…

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Filter Words and Phrases to Avoid in Writing Fiction…

Chris The Story Reading Ape's Blog

Filter words act like a veil between the reader and the character

by Kathy Steinemann  on Anne R. Allen site:

This article provides a list of writing filters, with practical examples of how to replace them. You’ll also find exercises that can double as story prompts.

All words exist for a reason. Use them wisely to create engaging narrative.

Why the fuss?

Filter words form a barrier that distances readers from a story.

Bertie felt the warm sand between her toes as she walked.

Bertie’s experience is relayed secondhand. When word economy is critical, this approach works. However, wouldn’t you rather become so involved that you almost feel it yourself?

With a few tweaks, we can strengthen the sentence.

The sand trickled between Bertie’s toes, radiating warmth with every step she took.

Strong verbs, trickled and radiating, amplify the sensory impact.

Five senses? Six? Twelve?

Most people can name…

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7 Tips for Writing a Book Blurb

I’ve read multiple times that blurbs are things people struggle with. Here’s some tips and a useful formula!

Writers After Dark

7-tips-to-write-book-blurbI’m here to help stop the madness. You know the one. The insanity that accompanies the “fun” of writing a book blurb. Attacking is more like it . . . I could stab it upside the head if it had one. But alas. Don’t let my bitterness get to you. In fact, use it to rise above me . . . with my own help, ironically. So let’s just get straight to it:

What on earth is a book blurb and why do you need one?

A book blurb is an important tool in convincing your readers to buy your book. Essentially, it’s a sales pitch. And you want it to be KILLER.

A reader will browse the shelves (or Kindle), and will find themselves intrigued by that amazing book cover of yours. Yay! You caught their attention. But you need more than that. You need to make…

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Contractions

No, I'm not talking about a woman in labor. I'm talking about grammar, and how it effects the play of your sentences. I'm talking about how to use it to give your writing more umph. Contractions, I'm sure most of you know, is when two or more words are combined into one, shortened form, using … Continue reading Contractions