write what you know

Writing Tips: Write What You Know

A common piece of writing advice is write what you know. When I first heard this advice, I thought it was odd. I don’t remember where I first heard it, but I remember thinking that as far as writing tips went, it was absurd. What about writing from your imagination or your feelings? How do genres…Read More

creative writing prompts

Creative Writing Prompts for Sci-Fi & Fantasy Lovers

Today’s post includes a selection of prompts from my book, 1200 Creative Writing Prompts. Enjoy! In the world of creative writing, we’ve only begun tapping the possibilities in speculative fiction, a genre that includes science fiction, fantasy, paranormal, supernatural, horror, and superhero stories, as well as anything that ventures beyond known reality. Speculative fiction is…Read More

storytelling exercise process

Storytelling Exercise: Process

Today’s storytelling exercise comes from my book Story Drills: Fiction Writing Exercises, which is packed with lessons and exercises for beginning to intermediate storytellers. This one is about developing a process. Enjoy! Process A typical writing process includes the following steps: brainstorm, outline, research, draft, revise, edit, proof, and publish. Sounds pretty straightforward, doesn’t it? But…Read More

character relationships

Creating Authentic Character Relationships

As storytellers, we often look for ways to make our characters as lifelike as possible: we give them internal struggles, external goals, difficult challenges, and hard choices to make, all while raising the stakes and doling out consequences for every action our characters take. Today let’s examine an oft-overlooked element of storytelling: character relationships. I…Read More

types of rhymes

Types of Rhymes in Poetry

We’re all familiar with rhyming poems. After all, these are the first poems most of us encounter as children, from the delightful stories of Dr. Seuss to the hilarious poetry of Shel Silverstein. People often think rhyming poems are rigid, conforming to strict meter and perfect rhymes at the end of every line, but within…Read More

punctuation marks parentheses

Punctuation Marks: Parentheses

Parentheses are among the most useful and versatile punctuation marks in the English language. They can be used effectively in both formal and casual writing, and the rules surrounding parentheses allow writers to use them for a variety of purposes. They just might be my favorite punctuation marks, simply because they provide a clear way…Read More

are you ready to write

From Ready, Set, Write: Getting Ready to Write

Today, I’m excited to share an excerpt from my book, Ready, Set, Write: A Guide to Creative Writing. This is from the book’s introduction. Enjoy! A Writer’s Journey Begins When I was a little girl, my mom used to sit, curled up on the couch, with a thick paperback novel in her hands and a…Read More

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

how to critique

How to Critique Other Writers’ Work

As a writer, it helps to be thick-skinned. Once you put your work out there, people will judge, review, and criticize it. But critiques are more helpful when they are received long before publication. In fact, critiques are one of the best ways to improve your writing. Many writers who want critiques that will help…Read More

screenplay by syd field

Screenplay by Syd Field

This post contains affiliate links that earn commissions from qualifying purchases. Studying the craft of writing from a variety of angles will benefit any writer. If you write short stories, you’ll learn something from studying a little poetry. If you write poetry, you can learn something useful from playwrights. And if you’re a novelist, you…Read More

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