Listening to the world around you – yes, perhaps more than is polite – is a surefire way to realistically represent the world around you, no matter the setting, time period or characters.
Don’t You Know, Write What You Know
If you follow write what you know literally, you are going to severely limit yourself as a writer.
What’s the Point (of View)?
Let’s delve a little into point of view choice between first, second and third, and see what influencers, challenges and story elements will help us make our decisions about which to use.
Beware the Mary-Sue
Before we can avoid writing her, or accidentally scare ourselves into a corner and avoid writing women altogether, it’s important to ask: What exactly is a Mary Sue, and why don’t we want one?
Step One: Remove Transmission
Now, of course, removing a transmission is a wildly complicated and difficult process, a little like saying Step One: Animate the monster or Step One: Walk on the moon. In my family, the term has become synonymous with comically difficult tasks– such as writing a book.
You Can’t Trust a Muse
This idea of the muse, of some catch-all messenger of creativity is delightful and fantastical. It’s also completely made up.
Get Series-ous: Seven Things to Do Before Starting Your Series
Though it has its many positives, there are certain pitfalls any writer can run into when writing a series. Taking these precautionary steps in advance will help you to minimize the challenges down the line and, hopefully, to produce better books.
Storyboard Not Storybored
Still, as someone who obsessively plans, outlines, plots and interviews, one of my most beloved tools of writing has stuck by me time and again. It’s not uncommon or revolutionary, not now, but it’s gotten me out of more sticky plot issues and setting questions than I care to admit. Behold the power of the storyboard.
The Constructive Critique Question
The constructive critique is a vital tool and not just for the reasons you think. While there is much to be gained from new sets of eyes reading and analyzing your work, the value of a critique, whether in a classroom, writing group or on a peer-to-peer basis, is undeniable.
Why I Do Book Challenges
I’ve seen a lot of people wondering about book challenges, so I thought I’d cover the benefits of a big book challenge and why I do them!