Creative Challenges Within a Single Genre
Whenever I talk to anyone about my writing, the question usually comes up: would I like to try writing anything other than mystery?
Then I explain that I actually have written something other than mystery. But it was a one-off, a ‘cozy zombie’ book (yes, I did make that genre up). But that was what’s called an ‘attack book.’ The story had been bothering me for years to write it, and finally I did to get the story to shut up.
What people seem most surprised about is that I don’t get bored writing my genre. That I’m not tired of writing the same types of stories.
I’ve always said that I found it a special creative challenge to work within the confines of genre and series.
Continue reading on Elizabeth Spann Craig’s blog >>
How to Plot a Book: Start With the Antagonist
I hate antagonists. Not so much because they’re, you know, the bad guys. No, I hate them because 90% of the time, they bore me into catatonia. Evil plan to take over the world? Yawn. Just please do whatever you gotta do to make the hero look good.
That’s how many authors approach their antagonists—as an external force who is present in the book solely for the purpose of giving the hero a reason to do all his cool hero-y stuff.
You may have planned almost all of your story—in your head, in an outline, or in a first draft—before giving even an afterthought to the antagonistic force. This is a mistake. Why? Because the antagonist is the catalyst for everything your hero does in his story.
Continue reading on Helping Writers Become Authors >>
6 Ways to Cultivate Urgency That Will Captivate Fiction Readers
If you want to write a novel worth reading, you can’t just have something to say. It has to be interesting enough to capture a reader’s attention — and it needs to move.
Among your best friends for harnessing the power of momentum is to cultivate urgency in your fiction:leaving the reader with the feeling they must read what you’ve written.
A lot of writers have great ideas, beautiful prose, or stunning scenes; perhaps smart dialogue comes as natural to them as breathing.
Continue reading at The Write Life >>
Social Media Best Practices for Authors
Once you’ve written your book and built your website, the next step for authors is to learn how to market their books.
Okay, I heard that collective ew out there. Look on the bright side. With marketing comes sales, and with sales comes money. Yeah!
Part of learning how to market your books is learning how to use social media. Chances are, you’ve already dabbled in social media but aren’t quite getting the hang of it. Am I right?
Continue reading on Social Media Just for Authors >>
Want to Make Revisions Easier? Create an Editorial Map
By Janice Hardy, @Janice_Hardy
Before starting a revision, it helps to create an editorial map. An editorial map (also called an edit map or book map) lets you know exactly how the novel unfolds and where it needs tweaking. It’s also a handy reference tool when you need to check when or how something happens without having to search through the entire manuscript.
Even if you’re a fast drafter and completed a manuscript in a few weeks, odds are you don’t remember everything that happens in every scene. Without a clear understanding of what’s in your novel, it’s harder to know the best way to revise.
Continue reading at Marcy Kennedy’s blog >>