Tag Archives: writing fiction

A Writer’s Library: Best Books for Writers

A writer’s library is a reflection of their philosophy of and commitment to their craft. It morphs over time, changing with their goals, achievements, and current projects. The instructional works of acclaimed authors frequently appear, if they’ve taken time to share knowledge of their craft with others. If the current project is introspective in nature, there may be space given to works on emotional theory, societal breakdown, or higher cultural structures. Some books stick around on the shelf for a longer

Tuning Fiction to Your Audience

Every written communication has an audience. Even someone who writes a note in order to recall something later has an audience: themselves. Quality writing links directly with how well it meets the needs of the audience. If that note is read as intended and reminds you to get the oil changed in the car, then it was a quality piece of writing! Writers of narrative face a challenge when writing for audiences outside themselves. Stephen King (as described in his

Writing Tools: Narrative Summary

Narrative summary is one mode of story-telling and narrative writing. Performers will recognize this tool as the voice of a narrator, different in that it doesn’t belong to any particular character in the story, it allows them to tell what has happened in the past or add context to a current situation, and provides a tool to transition between one immediate scene to another by covering the time between the events more quickly. As a writing tool, it operates much

Between First Draft and Test Readers

Between a rough draft and the first test reader lies a crucial and oft-neglected expanse. Some first-time writers plow forward and find an alpha reader right off, someone to read the stacks of pages before the ink on the final period has dried. Others with more experience may want to make this part of the work a private time, like an incubation period. Truth be told here, this stretch of time kills the majority of new authors’ work. It’s a sad

Kill Characters with Purpose

Google “how to kill a character”. Seriously, do it. There are dozens of links, posts, and witty little graphics showing the ways to cause death, soften the blow for readers, and create compelling death scenes. What is severely lacking here are authors addressing why any character has to die. What purpose does it serve, really? The reasons behind the death of a character aren’t about compassion, dramatic effect, or back-story. Killing a character is about the ones who live. Get

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