grammar spelling and punctuation

Good Grammar, Spelling, and Punctuation

Let’s get technical for a minute. What, exactly, is grammar? Here’s what Wikipedia says: In linguistics, grammar is the set of structural rules that govern the composition of sentences, phrases, and words in any given natural language. The term refers also to the study of such rules….Linguists do not normally use the term to refer to orthographical rules, although usage books and style…Read More

word choice

Making the Right Word Choices for Better Writing

Have you ever read a sentence and wondered what it was trying to say? Ever gotten hung up on a word that felt out of place because the meaning of the word didn’t fit the context? When was the last time you spotted a word that was unnecessarily repeated throughout a page, chapter, or book?…Read More

writing practices

How to Get the Most Out of Your Writing Practice

Everybody wants to know the secret to success, and writers are no exception. We often talk about all the things one must do in order to become a successful writer. From studying grammar to working through multiple revisions, from sending out submissions to building a platform, writers must wear many hats if they hope to…Read More

writing goals

How to Set Writing Goals to Stay Focused and Motivated

One of the things I love about writing is that it’s so accessible. All you need is a pen and a notebook (or access to a computer), and you’re off, putting your words down, expressing yourself. But it’s just as easy to lose your way — to let projects go unfinished, to procrastinate, or get…Read More

study writing

Why You Should Study Writing

Stephen King said, “If you want to be a writer, you must do two things above all others: read a lot and write a lot.” He’s right. These are the only two things you absolutely must do in order to be a writer. But they aren’t the only things you can or should do. Plenty…Read More

reading journal

The Benefits of Keeping a Reading Journal

I’ve kept a journal on and off since I was a kid. My journals are full of poetry, drawings, story ideas, and random thoughts. I’ve always wanted to keep a reading journal, but I usually inhale books, leaving little time between chapters to jot down my thoughts. I like to read at night, and by…Read More

developmental editing

How Developmental Editing Improves Your Writing

We usually think of editing as a process that cleans up our grammar, spelling, punctuation, and sentence structure. But developmental editing is a little different. A developmental editor looks at the content and structure of a writing project, paying little (or no) heed to the mechanics of the language. Developmental edits are for projects that…Read More

learn writing skills

10 Ways to Learn Writing Skills

For writers, the learning process never ends. There’s always some new skill to acquire, a new writing technique to develop, a new tool we can use. We strive to master basic writing skills (grammar, spelling, punctuation, sentence structure, etc.), and learn our form (fiction, nonfiction, or poetry) and genre (romance, suspense, fantasy, etc.). Storytellers, for example, must learn…Read More

adjectives and adverbs

What’s Wrong with Adjectives and Adverbs?

“The road to hell is paved with adverbs.” – Stephen King It’s not unusual for writing experts to recommend keeping adjectives and adverbs to a minimum. But many writers prefer to laden their language with modifiers, usually as a way to provide more detail and description for readers. And young and new writers tend to overuse…Read More

better writing

Are You Dedicated to Better Writing?

Today’s post is an edited excerpt from the introduction to 10 Core Practices for Better Writing, a book that aims to impart best practices in the craft of writing. “When I’m writing, I know I’m doing the thing I was born to do.” — Anne Sexton Words. They have the power to captivate the imagination,…Read More

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