Writing Resources ABCD

 

HOT LINKS: 

WRITING RESOURCES

“. . . when people experience stories as if they were one of the characters, a connection is made with that character, and the character becomes entwined with the self. In our study, we see evidence of that in their brains.”
  — Dylan Wanger, Assistant Professor of Psychology, Ohio State University

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FEATURING

Advice for Beginning Writers

By Cheryl Strayed — Writers Write

Cheryl Strayed is an American memoirist, novelist, podcast host, and essayist.

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WRITING RESOURCES
A – D

 

HOT LINKS NAVIGATION:

— A —

4 Questions to Ask Before You Write

By WORDRAKE

This post offers a simple, four-question checklist to complete for every work-related project, whether a social media post, a legal brief, or an email to a client. Make it part of your writing process and you’ll find it makes the whole process faster, easier, and more successful.

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4 Writing Personalities

pros and cons of four different writing personalities

By K.M. Weiland — Helping Writers Become Authors

Your unique and inherent personality affects everything you do—including writing. The first step in learning how to maximize your personality’s pros and minimize its cons is to figure out your basic personality type.

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5 Visual Techniques to Bring Your Story to Life

By Anthony Ehlers — Writers Write

We can use visual techniques to help us write our stories, novels, or screenplays. In this post, we write about five visual techniques to bring your story to life.

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5 Skills to Master

before you launch your book

By Maggie Smith — Writer’s Digest

The publishing game has changed so much over the years, and more is expected of authors now after the final draft is submitted. Even though it may seem like the success of your book launch is beyond your control, here are five ways to help yourself succeed in both the short and the long-term.

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6 Effective Steps to Promote Your Book

By Aileen Weintraub — Writer’s Digest

Social media is a daunting albeit important aspect of promoting our work. Here, author Aileen Weintraub offers six steps to promote your book on social media authentically.

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7 Figure Fiction

HOW TO USE UNIVERSAL FANTASY TO SELL YOUR BOOKS TO ANYONE

By T. Taylor

There are only, in my humble opinion, two kinds of readers: Readers who love your books and readers who don’t know they love your books yet. But how do you reach those readers in the second category, no matter what kind of writer you are?

The answer to that question is . . . Universal Fantasy

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7 Reasons Why Writers Need to Belong to a Book Club

By Colleen Story

Do you belong to a book club? If not, it’s time you joined, and not just to market your books! Find out all the benefits a book club has to give you. You may be surprised!

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7 Ways to Use AI Writing Tools

to generate content ideas

By Marcelo Beilin — Search Engine Journal

AI writing tools are changing the publishing world and can help you speed up your content creation process. Learn about your tool options.

Creating relevant, engaging, original content for your audience on a regular schedule is a necessary aspect of any content marketing strategy.

The more content you create, the more keywords your website is going to rank for in search results, and the more visitors, leads, and prospects you’re going to reach.

The problem is, it’s really hard work to produce fresh new content over and over again.

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7 Ways to Tell if You Have

too much plotting in your story

By Amanda Patterson — Writers Write

Are you over-plotting? In this post, we talk about 7 ways to tell if you have too much plot in your story.

When we start to write, we pour our stories onto a page and hope for the best. We add characters, viewpoints, settings, and backstory, thinking that it will make sense to everybody else because it makes sense to us.

It most often does not.

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8 Steps to Side Characters

How to craft supporting roles

By Sacha Black

Do your characters fail to bring your story to life? Are they flat, boring or have no depth? Is your story lacking a little cohesion or sparkle?

In 8 Steps to Side Characters, you’ll discover:

  • A step-by-step guide for creating side characters that bring your story alive
  • The main types of side characters and what you should do with them
  • The key to crafting character depth that hooks readers
  • How to harness your character’s voice to deepen your reader’s experience
  • Tips and tricks for using details to enhance characterization
  • Methods for killing characters that will help deepen plot, theme and story
  • Dozens of ideas for creating conflict with your side characters
  • Tactics for differentiating characters and making them feel real to your reader
  • Character archetypes and functions
  • The most common pitfalls and mistakes to avoid
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8 Ways to Avoid Cardboard Characters

By K.M. Weiland — Helping Writers Become Authors

“The plot was contrived, and the characters were cardboard.” Ouch. That’s about as bad as it can get when it comes to negative story reviews. It’s also perhaps one of the most common complaints audiences have about stories.

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10 Ways to Start Your Story Better

By Jacob M. Appel — Writer’s Digest

A good opening line is a powerful thing: It can grab an editor’s attention, set the tone for the rest of the piece, and make sure readers stay through The End.

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16 Embarrassing Writing Mistakes to Avoid

check ’em out before it’s too late!

By Writers Write

Jennifer Frost writes: ‘Writing mistakes are everywhere, especially online or when people neglect proofreading.

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40 Books That Might Help You Write Your Novel

By Rachel Krantz — BuzzFeed

For writers, every single book you read helps you write your book. Even if it’s a book you find badly written, you learn what not to do. As writers, reading is our fuel, our education, our most reliable cure for writer’s block. When in doubt how to proceed, read.

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Action as a Fiction-Writing Mode

By Mike Klaassen

As described by Evan Marshall in The Marshall Plan for Novel Writing, action is the mode fiction writers use to show what is happening at any given moment in the story.

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Action in a Story

when not to show the action

By K.M. Weiland — Writers Helping Writers Become Authors

However, within all this emphasis put upon showing action instead of telling it, we can sometimes lose sight of the fact that there are moments when our stories will actually be better off not including or showing the action.

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Action Scenes

FIVE WAYS TO SEIZE THE MOMENT

By Helen Hardt

What are your characters’ seeing, hearing, tasting, and smelling? More often than not, when an action scene doesn’t do it, it lacks sensory detail.

Sensory detail is extremely important in fiction writing. The reader wants to see, hear, smell, taste, and feel—inner feelings, as well—everything the character does. These details immerse the reader into the character’s head and heart. When a reader becomes a character, you’ve done your job well.

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Active Voice and Passive Voice

By Falguni —  Shabdkosh

This article will help you understand the difference between active and passive voice and make your written and spoken skills of language better.

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Act One Writing Mistakes

WITHOUT A SOLID FOUNDATION, OUR STORIES FLOUNDER.

By Jeanne Veillette Bowerman — Writer’s Digest

Insights into the three mistakes writers make when creating the first act.

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Adapting Novel to Film

Writers Dan Wakefield, Kurt Vonnegut, and Bruce Jay Friedman have a discussion about the unique experience of having their work adapted to fit on the big screen.

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Adding Front and Back Material to Your Book

By Nancy J. Cohen

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Adding Suspense to Your Novel

TOP 8 TIPS FOR WRITERS

By Mark and Connor Sullivan — Writer’s Digest

Writing compelling conflict is a crucial tool to add urgency to your novel. Analyze the conflict through the lens of stakes and goals.

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Adverbs, Brrrrrr . . .

By Reavis Worthan at the KILLZONE

“I believe the road to hell is paved with adverbs, and I will shout it from the rooftops.”
— Stephen King.

 

I can’t agree more. I fear I’ll step on some toes here, because there are hundreds of authors who love adverbs and will argue ‘til the cows come home that they improve their writing. I can’t go there. Oh, I know they’re in my own novels and columns, they pop up without notice in the first drafts, but I do my best to weed them out and rewrite the sentences to make them better than the original.

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Advertising Solutions for KDP Authors

Whether you’ve published one title or thousands, Amazon offers unique advertising solutions for the books category.

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Advice for Beginning Writers

By Cheryl Strayed — Writers Write

Cheryl Strayed is an American memoirist, novelist, podcast host, and essayist.

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Agents Seeking Authors

NOW ACCEPTING SUBMISSIONS!

By Robert Lee Brewer — Writer’s Digest

Here are 20 literary agents actively seeking writers and their writing.

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Agents: When Good Agents Go Bad

AGENT DANIELLE SMITH’S FORMER CLIENTS SPEAK OUT

By Erica Verrillo — Publishers Weekly

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Alliance of Independent Authors

The Alliance of Independent Authors is a professional business membership organisation for self-publishing authors. A non-profit, we provide trusted advice, supportive guidance, and a range of resources, within a welcoming community of authors and advisors.

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Amp Up Your Story Impact

PUSHING BACK AND LEANING IN

By Tiffany Yates Martin — Writer’s Digest

The pros and cons of increasing tension and showing character arcs.

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Anatomy of a Book Layout

DOWNLOAD A FREE PDF

By My Word Publishing

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Anatomy of a Scene

By Diane Callahan

Scenes are the building blocks of stories. Every scene in a novel contributes to the story in some way, whether through characterization, atmosphere, or plot progression. In examining the anatomy of a scene, we’ll start with the big-picture skeleton, then dive into the essential organs, and end with the skin—the outward appearance of the writing itself.

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Anatomy of a Sequel

By Amanda Patterson — Writers Write

Everything you need to know about writing a reaction scene, which is also known as a sequel.

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Anger

37 WAYS TO WRITE ABOUT ANGER

By Amanda Patterson — Writers Write

When we write about angry characters, we should remember that there is always something behind this emotion. Anger is usually a surface emotion. It is a reaction to an underlying problem.

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Announcing the Winners!

28TH ANNUAL SELF-PUBLISHED BOOK AWARDS

By Writer’s Digest

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Antagonist — Protagonist

The Least You Should Know

By Amanda Patterson — Writers Write

If you know who your protagonist and antagonist are, and what they want, you will probably be able to tell a good story. These are the two most important characters in your story. They define the story goal and control the plot. Your characters are the answer to most of your problems in storytelling.

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Compelling Antagonistic Characters

how to write them

By K.M. Weiland — Helping Writers Become Authors

The antagonist doesn’t have to be a person. It could be weather, circumstances, or the protagonist’s inner self. But, more often than not, the antagonist takes the form of a person. And crafting that person into a memorable and compelling character in his own right is vital to the success of your story.

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The Antagonist in Story Structure

parts 1 and 2

By K.M. Weiland — Helping Writers Become Authors

Especially in a tightly plotted story, the antagonist is every bit as important a driver of the story structure as is the protagonist.

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Anti-Hero

DEFINING AND DEVELOPING YOUR ANTI-HERO

By Jessica Page Morrell — Writer’s Digest

Anti-heroes are the bastards of fiction—those bad guys readers love to hate and hate to love. Find out what makes a memorable anti-hero tick and how to write them in this excerpt from Bullies, Bastards & Bitches.

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April 2021 Writing Posts

THE TOP 10

By Writer’s Write

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Archetypal Character Arcs

By K.M. Weiland

Archetypal stories are stories that transcend themselves. Archetypes speak to something larger. They are larger than life. They are impossible—but ring with probability. They utilize a seeming representation of the finite as a mirror through which to glimpse infinitude.

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Archetypes and Story Structure

HOW THEY’RE CONNECTED

By K.M. Weiland

By its very nature, story structure is archetypal. It is a pattern we recognize emerging from story. It is a pattern as big as life itself, and therefore one about which we are always learning more, but it is also a pattern we have been able to distill into specific systems that help us consistently recreate these deeply resonant archetypes in story after story.

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Are ing Words Weak in Fiction Writing?

By Derek Haines — Just Publishing Advice

The English language has only two participle forms, which are ed and ing. Because of this, you are going to use a lot of these words and phrases in your writing.

But when we use perfect and progressive tenses, or in some cases, the gerund form, the ing form of the verb can result in weak writing. Generally, we class simple past and simple present tense verbs as strong verbs.

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Armed and Dangerous

A WRITER’S GUIDE TO WEAPONS

By Michael Newton

This book is your comprehensive source for information.

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Articles by Jessica Strawser

Writer’s Digest

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Art of Beginning a Crime Story: Raymond Chandler

THE 10 GREATEST OPENING PARAGRAPHS FROM A NOIR MASTER

By Dwyer Murphy — CrimeReads

There are times in life when you need a good opener. Maybe you’re caught in a rut and need the charge of a new world, new characters, something that carries with it the quiet thrill of possibility. Whatever your reason or need, you’d be hard pressed to find an author equal to Raymond Chandler in jolting a story alive.

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Art of Fiction

By Joan Didion — The Paris Review

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Art of Fiction

NOTES ON CRAFT FOR YOUNG WRITERS

By John Gardner

This classic guide, from the renowned novelist and professor, has helped transform generations of aspiring writers into masterful writers—and will continue to do so for many years to come.

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Aspiring Novelist Dos and Don’ts

10 TIPS

By Jenna Avery — Writer’s Digest

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Ask The Coach

YOUR WRITING QUESTIONS ANSWERED

By Mary Simses — Writer’s Digest

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At Home Author

EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT GETTING PUBLISHED FROM THE COMFORT  OF YOUR OWN HOME

Choosing between traditional and self-publishing can be difficult without all the facts, and navigating them while learning the industry can be even more overwhelming. That’s where we come in.

We offer self-paced courses, webinar replays, free resources, and individualized coaching sessions for all your publishing needs, no matter where you’re at in the process.

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Audience: Target Identification

By AmyJones — Writer’s Digest

How to know your target audience, and how knowing will make your writing stronger.

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Author Archetype

WHAT IS YOUR AUTHOR ARCHETYPE?

Take this one-minute quiz to discover your Author Archetype and how you can make it work for you!

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Author Assistant

Providing authors with support and encouragement

By Linda Dunn

My mission is to provide the best possible options for you and your book through streamlining your author platform and strengthening your author brand.

I offer a range of author services. This allows my authors to focus on what they do best – write.

Author Services
  • Author branding
  • Author platform development
  • Email marketing management (campaigns, etc.)
  • Organization
  • Newsletters, one-sheet, flyers, etc.
  • Research
  • Book launch preparation
  • Book events
  • Podcast guest placement
  • Blog management
  • YouTube, etc.,  channel management
  • Web design
  • and more…
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Author’s Guide to eBook Pre-orders

By Clayton Noblit — Written Word Media

Getting a newly published eBook off to a good start is a great thing. It can teach retailer algorithms that the book is popular and can seed your title with reviews that help with future sales. So, how do you release an eBook with a bang? One great tactic is to use eBook pre-orders.

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Author’s Guide to Self-Publishing

This up-to-the minute guide tells you everything you need to get started.

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Author Incubator

WE’LL HELP YOU WRITE A BOOK
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Author Interviews

By Read More Co, LLC

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Author Quick Start Guide

By Brian Tracy

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Author Platform

How to build an author platform

By IngramSpark Academy — Self-Publishing

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Author in Progress

what it really takes to get published

By Therese Walsh

Author in Progress is filled with practical, candid essays to help you reach the next rung on the publishing ladder. By tracking your creative journey from first draft to completion and beyond, you can improve your craft, find your community, and overcome the mental barriers that stand in the way of success.

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Author Spending

WHAT? WHEN? HOW MUCH?

By Boni Wagner-Stafford — Ingenium Books

Most authors will—and should—start spending money long before they publish their book.

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Author Starter Kit

By Sherry Peters

This FREE guide enables you to lay out what you want to achieve, why you want it, and exactly what you need to do to get it.

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Author Success Map

A THREE-STEP PROCESS FOR CREATING AN AUTHOR SUCCESS MAP

By Marissa Decuir — Writer’s Digest

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Author Websites

CREATING AND PROMOTING

LiveCarta

The importance of having a well-built, comprehensive website for every writer in 2022 shouldn’t be underestimated. Choosing the right promotional strategy can turn it into a gold mine for lucrative book sales.

In this article, we’ll cover reasons why authors need a website, guide you on website creation, and share marketing strategies that will drive traffic to your author page.

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— B —

Backstory

SHOULD BE THE SCAR TISSUE OF YOUR BOOK

By Amanda Patterson — Writers Write

Make readers interested in characters before telling everything about their past lives.

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Bad Guys

INSIDE THE MIND OF A VILLAIN

By Dustin Grinnell — Writer’sDigest

How and why evil develops in story and in real life and how you can apply these concepts when writing villains

Why? What motivated this person? What was going on inside their head? How did they go from quiet and nerdy to hateful and violent? Were they isolated, disenfranchised, lost? Were they triggered or born a monster? We usually blame mental health issues, poor upbringing, bad wiring, and then we move on.

Writers are encouraged to go deeper.

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Bad Guys

HUMANIZING THE BAD GUY

By Usvaldo  de Leon, Jr. — Helping Writers Become Authors

It is not just good guys who need to be humanized, but bad guys as well. They need to be thicker than cardboard so they don’t collapse when confronted. And it doesn’t take much.

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Baskerville Experiment

FONT AND ITS INFLUENCE ON OUR PERCEPTION OF TRUTH

By Ken Bowen — MarketingExeriments

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Beating Writer’s Block

11 AWESOME TIPS

By StudyCorgi

Have you ever found yourself staring at your laptop’s screen, being unable to write anything? No worries! All writers have to struggle with the lack of inspiration. Want to know how to overcome writer’s block? Study this infographic and learn 11 awesome tips that work!

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Become a Freelance Book Editor

EDITORIAL ARTS ACADEMY: WHERE WORDSMITHS LEARN TO PROSPER FROM THEIR PASSION
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Become A Thriller Writer

AN INTERVIEW WITH IAN SUTHERLAND

By Bryan — Become A Writer Today

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Becoming a Writer

By Junot Diaz — OPRAH.COM

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Becoming a Writer at 50

By Rebecca Foust — Writer’s Digest

It’s never too late to become a successful writer. Get started now, regardless of where you are in your writing journey.

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Be The Dog

HOW TO START (AND MORE IMPORTANTLY) FINISH YOUR NOVEL

By Brian Yansky 

Want to write a novel? Don’t know where to start? Be The Dog has over a 100 mini-lessons on plot, character, setting, language, dialog, and has many strategies to begin and finish your novel.

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Before You Self-Publish

WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW

By Joshua C. Cook

Writing a book is hard work. There is a lot to learn before you actually publish your book.

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Beginning Novel Writing

By Joy Lynn Goddard

If you dream of writing a novel but don’t know how to get started, let me take you step by step through my novel-writing guide for beginners. Learn how to turn your big ideas into a full-length story, how to outline and structure your novel, how to develop characters so they’ll walk off the page, and how to polish, publish, and promote your work—and more. It won’t be long until you’re ready to share your novel with the world!

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How to Write Brilliant Beginnings

Crafting Your Novel’s Opening Chapters Made Easy

By Shane Millar

We live in a crazy-busy world, and readers will bin your book if you don’t hook them on page one. You might have written the greatest story of all time, but nobody will read it if you don’t have a Brilliant Beginning!

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Beginner’s Guide to Getting Published

By Sam Blum

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Beginnings

HOW TO START YOUR BOOK

By Alexa Donne

First line? First act? Common pitfalls, things to watch and avoid!

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Being Indie

A NO HOLDS BARRED SELF-PUBLISHING GUIDE FOR AUTHORS

By Eeva Lancaster

Learn how to create a book that SELLS.

To be a published author is an achievement few can brag about. But not all Indies are created equal.

This book will give you the edge you need.

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James Scott Bell

James Scott Bell is a winner of the International Thriller Writers Award and the author of the #1 bestseller for writers, Plot & Structure (Writer’s Digest Books).

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Best Free Creative Writing Courses Online

FOR CREATIVE WRITERS, FICTION AND NONFICTION

By Hayley Milliman — ProWritingAid

Luckily, there are a ton of great courses you can take online.

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Best Free Online Writing Courses

FOR CREATIVE WRITERS, FICTION AND NONFICTION

By Tom Corson-Knowles — TCK Publishing

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Best Kindle Unlimited Books

By Silvana Reyes Lopez

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Best Publishing News and Resource Websites 2021

101 BEST WEBSITES FROM THE MAY/JUNE 2021 ISSUE OF WRITER’S DIGEST

Writer’s Digest

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Best Spy Novels Written by Spies

By Alma Katsu — CrimeReads

ALMA KATSU IS AN AUTHOR AND RETIRED INTELLIGENCE PROFESSIONAL
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Best Websites for Writers 2021

By Writer’s Digest

These websites will help inspire, educate, and connect you to other writers as you start or continue on your writing journey.

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Best Writing Books

By Dawn Field — BookBaby

There are a huge number of books on writing and if you want to pick the absolute “best,” you have two choices. The first is to pick books that the most people have read and enjoyed. The second is to admit that the best books for each writer will be different.

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Betrayal Is Timeless

THE EVOLUTION OF GEORGE SMILEY

By Bruce Riordan — CrimeReads

In 1961, John le Carré’s readers were introduced to a new kind of spy, a “breathtakingly ordinary” man.

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Building Story Structure

By Film Riot

How to use the 6-act structure to construct stories!

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Bird By Bird

SOME INSTRUCTIONS ON WRITING AND LIFE

By Anne Lamott

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Blackdoge Books

AVAILABLE AUTHOR SERVICES:
  • Paperback and ebook publishing
  • Document design and formatting
  • Editing and proofing
  • Typesetting
  • Ebook conversion
  • Distribution assistance
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Blogging Strategies

BLOGGING FOR AUTHORS: LESSON #13

By Nina Amir

A blog provides a useful tool for authors. It provides a way to build a business around your books.

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Book Marketing Tips for Authors

16 free videos

By David Gaughran

A book promotion template that anyone can follow. Learn how to create your own marketing plan to put your book into the charts.

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Building a New Blog from Scratch — Part 1

part one of a series on creating your own blog

By Christopher Luke Dean —  Writers Write

If you’re thinking of starting a new blog, follow the series and try to create your own. (Sign up for our newsletter to watch out for new posts.)

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The Blurbs

FIVE (NOT SO EASY) STEPS

By Julie Tetel Andresen

Blurbs are the most important tool for selling your book. Here are the elements of writing a good one.

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Body Beats to Build On

A FICTION WRITER’S RESOURCE

By April W. Gardner

An emotion phrase book that provides the bones for fresh, vibrant content.

Layer with a little imagination, mix and match, and voilà—endless, unique beats. No more pet phrases. No more wasting time in search of a different way to write “she blushed.” Just you and your manuscript climbing to the next level. This easy-to-navigate tool for novelists is a must-have for your fiction self-editing checklist.

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Body Language

CHEAT SHEETS FOR ‘WRITING BODY LANGUAGE
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Books About Writing

ADVICE TO WRITERS
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Book Covers

INSTANTLY RECOGNIZABLE DESIGNS THAT HIT HARD AND QUICK

By Ellie Violet Bramley — The Guardian

Social media is now a vital platform to promote new titles. And that means jacket designs that hit you ‘hard and quick’

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Book Cover Design

READERS JUDGE BOOKS BY THE COVER!

By M.J. Albert — Writer and Book Marketing Expert

I have helped my clients become Amazon Best Selling Authors through a step by step process that works. A process that starts with the book’s cover.

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Book Cover Designer

PREMIUM PREMADE AND CUSTOM BOOK COVER DESIGNS FOR INDIE AUTHORS

The Cover Collection

With over 25 years of design experience, the team at The Cover Collection know how to get your book noticed. We design book covers for those writing their first novel through to authors who regularly hit the top spot on Amazon’s bestseller lists. To learn more about The Cover Collection and to read testimonials from recent clients please click here.

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CLICK HERE!

CLICK HERE!

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Book Cover Designer

Nancy Batra Design Studio

I provide custom book cover designs as well as marketing material for indie authors and self publishers.

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Book Description

Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing

Your description appears on your book’s Amazon detail page and is often a reader’s first experience with the content of your book. A well-written book description is important for enticing readers. Think of your description like the text on the back cover of a paperback or the inside flap of a hardcover book. This is often the first impression readers have of your story’s content and your writing style.

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Book Design Tips

DESIGNING YOUR BOOK

Gorham Printing

Factors such as visual appeal, the book’s audience, color, and font usage are just some of the aspects to be considered.

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Book Launch Planning

CREATING A SUCCESSFUL EVEN

By Steven Spatz

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Book Length

HOW LONG SHOULD A BOOK BE?

By Chuck Sambuchino — Writer’s Digest

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Book Marketing

OVERPERFORM IN A CROWDED MARKET

By Ricardo Fayet

Writing a book is hard. Marketing it can be even harder.

Marketing a book in 2021 can seem like a full-time job, what with the crazy number of things authors seem to be expected to do: social media, blog tours, advertising, price promotions, mailing lists, giveaways, you name it.

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Book Marketing Podcast

How to Turn Readers into Superfans

By Penny Sansevieri — AME Author Marketing Experts

In this book marketing podcast episode, we talk about Superfans and Street Teams and what they can do for your longevity as an author!

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Book Marketing Update

By Frances Caballo — Social Media Just for Writers

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Book Riot

BOOK RECOMMENDATIONS
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Book Riot YouTube Videos

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Book Theme Songs

By 

Wouldn’t it be cool if we could also click on an audio file to listen to the book’s theme song?

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Book Trailers

By Eeva Lancaster

We produce high impact, stunning, affordable, customized and cinematic book trailers that you can use for your marketing campaigns.
  • The video will be your SYNOPSIS in Motion.
  • We do not use templates. Your book trailer will be original.
  • We use cinematic music backgrounds and customized full screen still images and animations combined.
  • It will be a visual rendition of your blurb, designed to trigger an emotional response from the viewer.
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Book of the Year Awards

The Independent Authors Network

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Border Stories

A GUIDE TO THE NOVELS OF DON WINSLOW

By Bruce Riordan — CrimeReads

Ten years ago, Don Winslow was a San Diego-based novelist with a small, but hardcore following of crime fiction aficionados. Since then, thanks to the breakout success of his epic Cartel Trilogy, Winslow’s popularity has soared among readers with a taste for hard-hitting, socially-engaged thrillers.

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Both Barrels Author Services

  • Editing
  • Formatting
  • Cover Design
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Breaking Story

FOR YOUR MOVIE OR TV SHOW IDEA

By Ken Miyamoto — Screencraft

Everyone in the world that watches movies and TV — at one point — believes that they have an excellent idea for a movie or TV show. Yet having an idea is not enough.

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Breakout Novelist

HOW TO CRAFT NOVELS THAT STAND OUT AND SELL

By Donald Maass

If you’re serious about making your fiction vibrant, engaging, and marketable, you’ve found the right book.

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Ellen Brock

PROFESSIONAL EDITOR

Whether you need a full novel edit or just an hour of mentoring, I’d love to work with you! Together we will give your novel its best chance at traditional or self-publishing success.

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Build Better Characters

The psychology of backstory

Compelling characters are what keeps readers turning pages and buying books — from fantasies to mysteries to the great literary novel. But how to do you create characters that feel three dimensional and real on the page? Counsellor and author Eileen Cook shares common psychological techniques to help you build your characters and take your story to the next level.

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Building Your Author Website

A STEP-BY-STEP GUIDE

By Jane Friedman — Writer’s Digest

Your author website is your online home, and it may be the single most important tool for promoting yourself and your work. Here is a step-by-step guide to build your author website today and build for tomorrow.

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The Business of Being a Writer

WRITING IS ALSO A BUSINESS

By Jane Friedman

To have a productive full- or part-time writing career,  you need to understand the basic business principles underlying the industry.

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The Business of Self-Publishing

FINDING AND ENGAGING YOUR AUDIENCE

By A.J. Wells — Writer’sDigest

Self-publication allows you complete control over the production side of your novel. If your goal is to make money, you must write a book that people will pay to read.

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— C —

Frances Caballo

Frances Caballo is a social media consultant for authors. As someone who worked as a journalist and in public relations, she understands how media – including online media – works.

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CALIBRE eBook Management

A POWERFUL AND EASY TO USE E-BOOK MANAGER.

Users say it’s outstanding and a must-have. It’ll allow you to do nearly everything and it takes things a step beyond normal e-book software. It’s also completely free and open source and great for both casual users and computer experts.

IT’S FREE!
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Capitalization

ARE SIR, MADAM (OR MA’AM) AND MISS CAPITALIZED?

By The Editor’s Manual

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Capitalization

YOU’RE PROBABLY DOING IT WRONG

By Merethewalther

One of the most common misconceptions in writing is when to capitalize things, and when they should stay lowercase. This is honestly a big issue, and can take your manuscript from potentially looking professional to seemingly amateurish in a heartbeat.

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Capitalization of Military and Other Titles

WHEN ARE TITLES (COLONEL, QUEEN, SIR, ETC.) CAPITALIZED?

By LiveJournal

Capitalization of these kinds of titles depend on how they’re being used.

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Capitalizing on the Stickiness of Serial Fiction

By Lee Purcell — BookBaby

It’s not likely you’ll get rich writing serial fiction, but you can gain exposure for your work and get feedback from readers to gain insights for shaping and honing your storytelling skills.

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Captivate Your Readers

AN EDITOR’S GUIDE TO WRITING COMPELLING FICTION

By Jodie Renner

Are you looking for techniques to really bring your fiction to life for the readers, so they feel they’re right there, on the edge of their seats, struggling with the hero or heroine? This award-winning editor’s guide to writing compelling fiction provides specific advice, with examples, for captivating readers and immersing them in your story world.

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Capturing Authentic Human Reactions in Fiction

By K.M. Weiland — Helping Writers Become Authors

The goal of all memorable fiction is to capture the truth about humanity. Sometimes that truth is weighty and all-encompassing, such as the ubiquitous “good triumphs over evil.” But sometimes the important truths in fiction are found in the tiniest representations of the world around us and the people who inhabit it. When authors faithfully capture the rainbow glint of a dragonfly’s wing or the raspberry sherbet color of a sunrise, they offer us a nugget of truth about our shared existence.

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Cardboard Characters

how to avoid them!

By K.M. Wieland — Helping Writers Become Authors

“The plot was contrived, and the characters were cardboard.”

Ouch. That’s about as bad as it can get when it comes to negative story reviews.

It’s also perhaps one of the most common complaints audiences have about stories.

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Central Booking Interviews on YouTube

HUGE LIST OF FREE WRITER INTERVIEWS HERE
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Raymond Chandler

THE ART OF BEGINNING A CRIME STORY

By Dwyer Murphy — CrimeReads

There are times in life when you need a good opener. Whatever your reason or need, you’d be hard pressed to find an author equal to Raymond Chandler in jolting a story alive.

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Channeling Your Inner Voice

FROM POINT BREAK WRITER W. PETER ILIFF

By Al Horner — Screencraft

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Characters, Emotion & Viewpoint

By Nancy Kress

I built this guided notebook originally for my own use, to help me create, document, and track characters as I write my novels.

  • How do you create a main character readers won’t forget?
  • How do you write a book in multiple-third-person point of view without confusing your readers (or yourself)?
  • How do you plant essential information about a character’s past into a story?
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Character Definition

Can you define your characters in one word?

By K.M. Weiland — Writers Helping Writers Become Authors

Because of the space and time limitations of a story, our characters are always going to be far less multifaceted than are real people. (Actually, when you come right down to it, we have no choice but to simplify our characters, since if we tried to present all the contradictions of a real human being, our readers would end up bewildered…)

In recognizing this limitation, here’s how to strengthen our characters and, more importantly, strengthen our readers’ perception of them.

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Character Description

11 SECRETS TO WRITING AN EFFECTIVE CHARACTER DESCRIPTION

By Rebecca McClanahan — Writer’s Digest

Are your characters dry, lifeless husks? Author Rebecca McClanahan shares 11 secrets to keep in mind as you breathe life into your characters through effective character description, including physical and emotional description.

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Character Development

EASY-TO-FOLLOW TIPS TO MAKE READERS LOVE YOUR CHARACTERS

By Hannah Yang — ProWritingAid

 It doesn’t matter how intricate your worldbuilding is, or even how exciting your plot is. If your characters fall flat, your readers will probably stop reading.

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Character Habits and Quirks

THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN CHARACTER HABITS AND QUIRKS

By Paula Wynnw — Writer’s Digest

What exactly is the difference between behaviors, habits, mannerisms, and quirks? Read on to learn the subtle (yet important) differences between them and how to apply them to your characters.

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Character Identification

WHY YOU SHOULD ALWAYS IDENTIFY CHARACTERS PRONTO

By K.M. Weiland

Introducing characters by name—and even a brief description by way of reminder if necessary—is a simple courtesy that will ensure readers are never yanked from your narrative by the need to hunt down antecedents.

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Character Inner Conflict

WANT VS. NEED

By K.M. Weiland

All stories are ultimately rooted in the primal and personal struggle of a character’s inner conflict. The external plot is the reflection/projection of the character’s inner struggle upon the external world.

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Character Names

THE 7 RULES FOR PICKING CHARACTER NAMES

By Elizabeth Sims — Writer’s Digest

No matter what sort of character name you’re pursuing, heed common sense and follow these seven tips to make sure you pick the best names possible for your story.

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Character Questions

10 QUESTIONS YOU NEED TO ASK YOUR CHARACTERS

By Brenda Janowitz — Writer’s Digest

You simply cannot write a good novel without knowing your characters inside and out. Here are the top 10 questions you need to be able to answer about each of your characters.

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Character Quirks

TIPS FOR WRITING QUIRKY CHARACTERS

By Kerry Winfrey — Writer’s Digest

Looking for ways to spice up your characters?

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Character Tool for Novelists

By Kirsten Mortensen

I built this guided notebook originally for my own use, to help me create, document, and track characters as I write my novels.

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Character Voice

By K.M. Weiland

The single most important factor in getting readers’ attention is a strong, unique, and personality-heavy narrative voice. Voice is what defines both your story and your narrating character. You can think of voice as your story’s unique fingerprint.

We can perfectly understand characters in our heads and in our outlines, but when we actually start putting them onto the page, their personalities—and thus their voices—can prove elusive.

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Characters

writing killer characters

By Marnie Riches — Writer’s Digest

Developing characters as fully formed, three-dimensional people requires patience, observation, and knowing what to put on the page and what to keep off. Here, author Marnie Riches shares how to write killer characters.

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Characters

how to write sympathetic characters

By K.M. Weiland — Helping Writers Become Authors

One of our most critical jobs as authors is creating sympathetic characters.

At first glance, this may seem like a no-brainer. After all, most of us write our stories based on our love for the main character. However, there are several levels of sympathetic characters.

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Characters

SIGNS YOUR STORY HAS TOO MANY CHARACTERS

By K.M. Weiland — Helping Writers Become Authors

There comes a point when so many characters are actually too many.

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Characters

WHAT IS A DYNAMIC CHARACTER?

By Dave Chesson — Kindlepreneur

A dynamic character is great for readers, and can be some of the most memorable literary elements in a story. But what is a dynamic character, and how can you get one?

In this article you will learn:

  1. What a dynamic character is
  2. Why they are important
  3. How dynamic characters relate to a real person
  4. Some examples of dynamic characters in literature and film
  5. How you can create a complex personality with a dynamic character
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Characters

CREATING INSTANTLY RECOGNIZABLE CHARACTERS

By Helga Schier — Writer’s Digest

Meeting characters in a novel is very much like meeting people in real life. When we start reading a book, it’s as if we moved to a new town and were meeting a whole bunch of new people at the same time. Your job as a writer is to create that town and populate it with characters that live their lives before our eyes.

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Characters — 8 Ways to Avoid Cardboard Characters

By K.M. Weiland — Helping Writers Become Authors

“The plot was contrived, and the characters were cardboard.” Ouch. That’s about as bad as it can get when it comes to negative story reviews. It’s also perhaps one of the most common complaints audiences have about stories.

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Characters Can Surprise Us

By Ron Corbett — Writer’s Digest

Ron discusses the way his characters evolved throughout the writing process of his new mystery novel, The Sweet Goodbye, his advice for other writers, and more!

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Characters and Setting

WHY WRITERS SHOULD CREATE A SETTING LIKE A CHARACTER

By Amanda Patterson — Writers Write

Do you want to create memorable settings? In this post we look at why writers should create a setting like a character and how to do it. Many authors say that their setting becomes a character in the stories they write. Some even start with the setting and then add the characters.

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Characters and Stories

MAKING CHARACTERS AND STORIES BETTER — MORAL DILEMMAS

By Steven James — Writer’s Digest

Readers can’t resist turning pages when characters are facing tough choices. Use these 5 keys to weave moral dilemmas into your stories—and watch your fiction climb to new heights.Dreaming of establishing your reputation as a writer but don’t know where to begin? Here is a simple career plan to help you.

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Characters: Writing Unlikeable Characters

And Falling in Love with Them

By Kate Williams — CrimeReads

When I set out to write my young adult novel Never Coming Home, my number one goal was to create a killer mystery. My number two was to write a cast of characters that the reader just couldn’t wait to see die.

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Characters Who Are Fictional

TIPS FOR BREATHING LIFE INTO FICTIONAL CHARACTERS

By E.J. Levy — Writer’s Digest

Has a historical figure, a political candidate, or someone else captured your writerly fascination?

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Characters Who Are Flawed

HOW TO WRITE FLAWED CHARACTERS

By David Corbett — Writer’s Digest

Flawed characters and antiheroes make for fascinating protagonists—but their behavior can risk alienating readers. Follow this blueprint for flawed-yet-relatable heroes who can still provoke empathy.

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Characters Who Are Single

HOW TO WRITE A CHARACTER WHO IS SINGLE

By Craig Wynne — Writer’s Digest

Dr. Craig Wynne shares strategies for writing single characters in fiction who are strong, healthy, and fulfilled. He includes 4 clichés and tropes to avoid when writing single characters, 4 alternative strategies, and why writers should even care.

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Lee Child — Starting Writing After 40

By Lee Child — On YouTube

In this interview, bestselling novelist Lee Child (Jack Reacher novels) explains why it’s better to start writing later in life.

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Agatha Christie

By Tina Jordan — The New York Times

On a cold December night in 1926, Agatha Christie went out in her beloved Morris Cowley roadster and didn’t return home for 11 days. Here’s how her disappearance played out.

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Class on Writing

BOOK A CLASS NOW

By Streamline Writing Classes

Sign up with your email address to receive news and updates on classes and writing.

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Classes on Writing for Everyone

LISTING OF CLASSES AND EVENTS

By FORA

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Cliché: Definition and Meaning

By Krystal N. Craiker — ProWritingAid

Clichés are what you write when you don’t have the energy or inspiration to think of a new way to express an idea.

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Comma Punctuation

Rules and Examples for Correct Usage

By Krystal N. Craiker — ProWritingAid

Commas are one of the trickiest punctuation marks because there are so many rules.

We’ve rounded up the top ten comma punctuation rules you should know.

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Commas: Where Do They Go?

By Carol Saller — CMOS Shop Talk

Commas Are Complicated

Teachers don’t always reveal the whole truth, even to their best students, that punctuation isn’t always a right-or-wrong kind of thing, or that different publishers have different comma rules, or that sometimes it’s only by fudging a rule that creative writing can begin to sing.

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Conflict

5 WAYS TO INCREASE CONFLICT

By Eileen Cook —  Writer’s Digest

Learn how to plot and structure your novel by adding and increasing conflict.

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Conflict

4 TYPES OF CONFLICT

By Karen Ann Lefkowitz —  Writer’s Digest

Conflict is what drives a story. Without opposition, the story becomes lifeless. Learn the four types of conflict and how to effectively use them in your next screenplay.

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Conflict

WHERE DOES CONFLICT COME FROM IN FICTION?

By Mia Botha — Writers Write

We’ve all been told time and again that conflict is fiction, but we’re rarely given more of an explanation after that. It is true, conflict is what drives our stories and make the readers turn the page, but what is it and where exactly does it come from?

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Conflict in Fiction

SEVEN TYPES OF CONFLICT AND HOW TO USE THEM

By Gina Edwards — ProWritingAids

“Nothing moves forward in a story except through conflict.”
— Robert McKee, Law of Conflict, and storytelling is governed by it.

The finer details like story setting, character, and plot events all give the reader context and understanding, but conflict, according to McKee, is the “soul” of story. Every kind of story, every genre – novel, short story, science fiction, romance, mystery, historical, young adult, etc. – requires it.

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Conflict in Fiction

WHAT IT REALLY IS AND WHY IT’S IMPORTANT TO PLOT

K.M. Weiland

Conflict is one of the central engines of story. We’ve all heard it: no conflict, no story. On the surface, that makes total sense. It’s natural enough for our modern, western minds to conflate conflict and confrontation when we consider fiction.

There’s more to it than that!

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Conflict — Pour It On

K.M. Weiland

Big battles barely scratch the surface of the conflict necessary to make a book work.

Let’s consider the different levels of conflict.

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Conflict in Fiction

HOW TO WRITE INNER CONFLICT

Norma Curtis — Writer’s Digest

Conflict is a necessary ingredient to all storytelling. 

Conflict creates friction and without friction, the narrative would be a succession of happy scenes. In a novel, that’s boring because we are hardwired to want something to happen. We know from our own life experiences that the next moment of excitement or turning point is just around the corner. Conflict is a dramatic requirement.

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Conflict: Man vs. Nature

By Krystal N. Craiker — ProWritingAids

A story without conflict isn’t much of a story at all. One of these conflicts is known as man vs. nature — a story that writers come back to over and over.

Because it’s grounded in a reality we all know, man vs. nature can provide endless possibilities for fictional story ideas.

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The Conflict Thesaurus

a writer’s guide to obstacles, adversaries, and inner struggles 

By  Becca Puglisi and Angela Ackerman

Every story starts with a character who is motivated by a need and has a goal that can resolve it. Whether their objective is to find a life partner, bring a killer to justice, overthrow a cruel regime, or something else, conflict transforms a story premise into something fresh. Physical obstacles, adversaries, moral dilemmas, deep-seated doubts and personal struggles…these not only block a character’s external progress, they become a gateway for internal growth.

The right conflict will build tension and high stakes, challenge characters as they traverse their arcs, and most importantly, keep readers emotionally invested from beginning to end.

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Confronting Stereotypes in My Fiction

By Cate Holahan

It’s a minefield that I explore in my upcoming domestic suspense novel, Her Three Lives.

Her Three Lives Gaslight goes high-tech in USA Today bestselling author Cate Holahan’s new standalone thriller in which a family must determine who the real enemy is after a brutal home invasion breaks their trust in each other.

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Contracts 101

THE GRANT OF RIGHT CLAUSE

By Jane Friedman

The legalize writers need to understand to protect their long-term earning potential.

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Controlling the Element of Time in Your Novel

TIME IS A SLIPPERY THING

By C.S. Lakin

We need to control the pacing in our stories, and one great way to do that is to manipulate time.

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Cosmic Horro

THREE TIPS FOR WRITING IT

By Scott Kenemore — Writer’s Digest 

Cosmic horror, unlike any other fiction genre, is usually considered as a horror sub-genre that emphases the randomness of the universe and the insignificance of humanity.

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Cover Creator

BE YOUR OWN COVER DESIGNER

By Terri Main — Author, Publisher, Graphic Designer

Download this FREE report!

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Cover to Cover

WHAT FIRST-TIME AUTHORS NEED TO KNOW ABOUT EDITING

By Sandra Wendel

Read this book before you publish your book.

This is the one book you need to read and follow if you’re writing a book for the first time. Why? Because you’ve never written a book before. This is new territory.

To write a successful book, you need to find and work with an editor who shares your passion for your work and your message and who will help you make your book sing. And sing a smash hit. A blockbuster of a message, clearly and carefully constructed so readers love you and your work and leave you five-star Amazon reviews only because they don’t have more stars to give.

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The Craft of Character

HOW TO CREATE DEEP ENGAGING CHARACTERS

By Mark Paul Boutros

Character is at the heart of every story. We love stories because we fall in love with characters, we want to see what happens to them and we want to see them experience hope and despair.

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Craft of Writing

OVER 35 VIDEO LESSONS WITH FOREVER ACCESS

By Christopher Hawke

  • Will you succeed as a writer?
  • Leverage your ability by honing your craft.
  • Finish your story with confidence.
  • Join those who have revolutionized their writing life…
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Craft of Writing

18 favorite books about writing craft

By Leah Schnelbach — TOR.COM

What makes a writer is creating a space, as often as possible, to think and write. And that can mean many things! It can be typing into a notes app during your baby’s nap, it can mean an hour before work each day, it can mean sitting under a tree with a Moleskine and a fancy pen, it can mean one long writing session a week, or dictating during your commute, or staying up until 4AM writing fic.

Also read as much as possible, in as many genres as possible—and to that end, here’s a book list!

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Crafting Animal Characters

THE BASICS ON HOW TO CREATE AN ANIMAL CHARACTER

By Moriah Richards — Writer’s Digest

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Creating Characters

A QUICK-START GUIDE FOR CREATING CHARACTERS

By Mia Botha — Writers Write

Creating characters properly takes time. In this post, we’ve created a quick-start guide for creating characters.

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Creating Characters in Fiction

A QUICK-START GUIDE FOR CREATING CHARACTERS

By Golden Storyline Books

Characters are the heartbeat of almost every story. They generally have two different purposes in a narrative: to be human enough for your readers or audience to identify with them and to contribute to the meaning or message intended by the author.

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Creating Compelling Characters

TIPS FOR WRITING CAPTIVATING CHARACTERS

By Cassie Beebe — About Writing

Characters have always been an aspect of storytelling that has come naturally to me. They live in my mind, roaming free, living their lives and being themselves, and my job is simply to reflect that accurately on the page. But for my most recent novel, Moving On, things were different.

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Creating a Flexible Outline

A SEVEN-STEP PROCESS

By K.M. Weiland — Writer’s Digest 

Many writers who swear they dislike outlines are thinking of them in the wrong ways. K.M. Weiland’s seven-step process to creating a flexible outline for any story can help you let loose and have fun in your first draft.

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Creating Literary Story

LEARN CHARACTER , PLOT, DIALOGUE, NARRATION

By William H. Coles

With this course, you will learn, in eight lessons, to create effective characters with action scenes, conflict resolution, change, identifiable core desire, enlightenment, and working dialogue; and you will learn to structure dramatic literary plots that are character-based, narrated effectively, and created with agreed-upon prose that lasts as an art form.

View a FREE video of a course lesson!

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Creating Literary Stories

THE ENTIRE SIX-BOOK SERIES

By William H. Coles

A Six Book Series on how to write exceptional prose fiction and create written stories that are remembered, engage, and that please readers with perception of life and living in an increasingly complex world.

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Creating Negative Tension

A FREE YOUTUBE VIDEO

By Bill Johnson

How to create and sustain narrative tension in a novel, screenplay, or play.

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Creating Unforgettable Characters

By Linda Seger

How to create strong, multidimensional characters in fiction, covering everything from research to character block.

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Creating Your Character’s Inner Conflict

WANT VS. NEED

By K.M. Weiland

As individuals, our conflicts with others or the world itself are almost inevitably either reflections or projections of our inner conflicts—our cognitive dissonances, our conflicting wants and needs, sometimes even our conflicting wants and wants or conflicting needs and needs.

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Creative Penn

ONE OF THE TOP 100 BLOGS FOR WRITERS

Joanna Penn is a podcaster, international speaker, and award-winning creative entrepreneur. This site is regularly voted one of the Top 100 blogs for writers by Writers Digest. Most of the information on this site is free for you to read, watch or listen to.

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Creative Writing Course FREE

By About Writing

Covering plot& structure, character & development, writing effective, attractive prose, editing your work.

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Creative Writing Courses

By The Writers College

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Creativity Ramp-Up

HOBBIES, ACTIVITIES, AND CREATIVE PURSUITS

By Steve Hooley — @ The Kill Zone

For today’s post, I wanted to explore activities that writers use to ramp up creativity, refill the well of creativity, or “recharge our batteries.”

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Crime Fiction

tips for writing crime fiction

By Krystal N. Craiker — ProWritingAid

Writing crime fiction can be daunting. You must leave clues, create captivating characters, build tension, and have a believable villain and crime.

Today, we’re giving you our top eight tips on how to write a crime novel.

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Crime Fiction Secrets and Suspense

Interviewer Paula L. Woods — Los Angeles Times Festival of Books

Escape the humdrum of everyday life into worlds filled with gangsters, grifters and gut-wrenching suspense from three crime fiction writers that are at the top of their game. The conversation will be guided by mystery reviewer Paula L. Woods.

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CrimeReads

CHECK IT OUT. SIGN UP FOR THEIR WEEKLY NEWSLETTER.
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Crimes

DON’T COMMIT THESE 9 FICTION-WRITING CRIMES

By Alex J. Coyne — Writers Write

Have you ever encountered a story that was too clumsy, slow, or flat to finish reading? It is probably filled with fiction-writing crimes you should avoid committing. The world is full of bad fiction, and there are many different things that can make a story awful.

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Crime Writer’s Week

FULL SCHEDULE PLUS REPLAYS

Click the link and then scroll down to see replays and slides from the sessions.

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Customized Book Covers

By Eeva Lancaster

Your Book’s Cover is the first thing a reader sees when they browse online bookstores. You have 5 seconds to convince them to click on it and read your synopsis. With the millions of books online, make yours stand out with an EYE CATCHING and PROFESSIONALLY DESIGNED cover.  We can help you bring readers one step closer to purchasing your book.
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— D —

Daily Meditations

WRITER TIPS FOR 100 DAYS

By David Farland

GET YOUR FREE COPY OF DAILY MEDITATIONS
  • Learn how to get into “the zone” on Days Five through Eight.
  • Find out the top reasons editors reject stories on Day 46.
  • Read about the “beatitudes” every successful writer needs on Days 54 to 64.
  • Get insight on how to write powerful endings on Day 96.
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Daily Routines of 12 Famous Writers

By James Clear 

As an example of what separates successful people from the rest of the pack, take a look at some of the daily routines of famous writers from past and present.

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Day in the Life of a Book Manager

By Eeva Lancaster

I do all the things an author needs to do, except write.

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Daydreaming

BOOKS TO HELP YOU DAYDREAM

By Gianessa Refermat — Book Riot

GET YOUR HEAD IN THE CLOUDS

Daydreaming goes past thinking positive thoughts. It’s more about creating an oasis.

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Deception

HOW STORIES DECEIVE

By Maria Konnikova — The New Yorker

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Deciding to Become a Writer

By Shane Everitt

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Define Your Path to Writing Success — FREE!

By The Daring Writer

In this FREE Guide, you will clearly lay out what you want to achieve, why you want it, and exactly what you need to do to get it.

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Descriptions

a quick start guide to writing descriptions

By Amanda Patterson — Writers Write

Are you scared of putting too much or too little description in your stories? In this post, we’ve included a quick start guide to writing descriptions.

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Detroit Crime Fiction

A LITERARY TRADITION LIKE NO OTHER

By Paul French — CrimeReads

Murder and Mayhem in the Motor City
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Dialogue

HOW TO MAKE DIALOGUE SOUND REAL

By Mike Klaassen

Dialogue is a literary device that mimics real speech, according to Renni Browne and Dave King in Self-Editing for Fiction Writers; “. . . dialogue is an artificial creation that sounds natural when you read it.” John Truby, in Anatomy of a Story, puts it a little differently: “Dialogue is not real talk: it is highly selective language that sounds like it could be real.”

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Dialogue

DON’T FORGET THE DIALOGUE

By K.M. Weiland

For many of us, dialogue is one of the most enjoyable parts to write in any story. A good story will include a balance of everything, and dialogue goes a long way toward breaking up potentially tedious scenes and keeping readers focused. You can think of dialogue as salt. It perks up the readerly taste buds and makes everything else taste better.

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Dialogue — How to Write It

7 great tips for writers

By Hannah Yang — ProWritingAid Fortune

Great dialogue serves multiple purposes. It moves your plot forward. It develops your characters and it makes the story more engaging.

It’s not easy to do all these things at once, but when you master the art of writing dialogue, readers won’t be able to put your book down.

Link

Dialogue Tips

HOW TO UP YOUR DIALOGUE GAME

By Emily Henry — Writer’s Digest

When there’s dialogue on the page, it should feel like something’s happening, like the plot or the emotional arc is being moved forward. If you find your dialogue feels like an interlude rather than an event, there’s a good chance that it’s lacking tension, or conflict.

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Dialogue Workbook

By Mia Botha — Writer’s Write

If you want to write great dialogue, buy The Dialogue Workbook. It will teach you everything you need to know to write compelling dialogue.  It has 14 chapters on every aspect of dialogue.

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Dialogue on Writing

A SERIES OF INTERESTING PODCASTS

By Mitzi Rapkin — LitHub Radio

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Dialogue Writing Tips

By Emily Henry — Writer’s Digest

Here are four tricks to employ when dialogue needs a boost.

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Joan Didion on Storytelling, the Economy of Words, and Facing Rejection

By Maria Popova

“Short stories demand a certain awareness of one’s own intentions, a certain narrowing of the focus.”

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Differences Between a Crime, Mystery, and Thriller Novel

By David Corbett — Writer’s Digest

To pitch the right agents, you first need to know exactly what it is you’re pitching. Learn the subtle differences among the many subgenres of suspense—and how to meet and exceed expectations in every one.

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Display Ads for Authors

OUR EXPERTS DO THE HEAVY LIFTING FOR YOU

By BookBaby

If you want more readers to reach the promised land, you have to lead them there. And one of the best ways to find new readers where they can buy your book is with Display Ads for Authors.

Display Ads for Authors uses the Google Display Network to advertise your book online.

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Disturbing

A GOOD STORY MUST BE DISTURBING

By Mark Rubinstein — Writer’s Digest

Whether you’re writing a literary novel, a psychological, medical, legal or spy thriller, or even a cozy mystery, for a novel to be engaging, it must center on human conflict and disturbance. Here’s what you need to know.

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Doublespeak: A Look at Voice

By Terry Odell — @ The Kill Zone (TKZ)

“I’m looking at two aspects of voice today: Character and Author.”

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Draw Out Your Story’s Tension

By K.M. Weiland

The first thing authors need to do is make sure we’ve got a humdinger of a prize waiting for our readers at the end of the story. Ramp up the stakes and prepare yourself to deliver fireworks! Beyond that, your primary concern adjusting the pacing, so you’re feeding readers little breadcrumbs of anticipation that continually whet their appetites for the big feast at the end.

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Dual Timeline

By K.M. Weiland

Some stories are so complicated they require not just one, but dual timelines to tell everything. The pitfalls of this are obvious, since you’re risking reader confusion and frustration by straying from the beaten path of a single chronological storyline. But the benefits are also manifold: dual timelines can create the opportunity for a deeper plot, more resonant theme, and greater character development.

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Dysfunctional Heroines

Celebrating Women Who Defy Expectations

By Dawn Winter — LitHub

Ultimately, all fiction is about struggles, losses, challenges, triumphs (not necessarily in that order). It is what people like to read because it is what they identify with and, as we know, this can go anywhere before it is resolved. But heroines like this seem to strike a chord.

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Dyslexia — A Writer’s Superpower

WHO KNEW?

By P.J. Manney — Writer’s Digest

Dyslexia, dysgraphia, and dyscalculia should not be viewed as impediments to becoming a writer. Rather, they should be viewed as writing superpowers, especially when paired with certain technologies.

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