Give Your Characters Their Just Desserts

by Margaret Welwood The ending of Frank Stockton’s “The Lady or the Tiger?” has fascinated and annoyed readers for well over 100 years. It also fascinated and annoyed my English as a Second Language students over the span of my 30-year ESL teaching career. Just like dessert after a meal, the ending of a story […]

The Benefits of Stream-of-Consciousness Writing

by Sarah Tun Writing stream-of-consciousness is a kind of brainstorming without a central theme, point or purpose. Have you ever written without objective or purpose? It’s like painting a picture of what’s before your eyes, without knowing what the boundaries are, or the medium, or even whether or not you’ll include all of what you […]

3 Ways to Show, Not Tell

by Jennifer Harris You’ve heard it a hundred times, if not a thousand: show, don’t tell. But do you know what that really means? Almost every writer struggles with this concept at one point in their writing career. But once you learn the difference, and put it into practice, you’ll be amazed at how quickly […]

Of Hawks and Mice, and Writers’ Friends

by Margaret Welwood You Can Go Home Again, the title assures us. But as three mice run for cover from a diving hawk, we forget the title. Mother mouse hurries the children into a rock crevasse in front of her, and the hawk accelerates, extending its talons . . . . So why do we—children […]

What Do the Best Writers Do?

…That Other Writers Don’t? by Joel Klettke [Editor’s note: While this is specifically for non-fiction writers, don’t miss the golden nuggets here that will smooth the paths for fiction writers.] As someone who both writes and manages a writing team, I’ve often wondered why some writers need very little editing or coaching while others need […]

How One Illustrator Works with Authors

by John Collado As a freelance illustrator I am always on the hunt for new work and whether I am contacting an author or publisher or whether they have made first contact, I usually have a set of steps by which I work a project from start to finish. Initially I will discuss their project […]

Does Social Media Sell Books?

by DiAnn Mills When I speak to writers about the value of social media, I hear moans, groans, and complaints swirling around the room. Too many writers are not willing to get past the learning curve needed to develop a solid brand. A writer’s life requires flexibility to develop the craft, marketing, publishing, and branding. […]

Description Now and Then

Sophie Dawson A while back on a forum there was a question about narrative description. The posting author mentioned how in today’s novels the descriptions were not nearly as detailed as in the past. He wondered why. Now I’ve never really been a show stopper but my post ended the thread pretty abruptly. What had […]

No Guts, No Story — Inspiring words

  by Gina Burgess That quote, No guts, no story by Chris Brady sent a little chill through me. Inspiring words, nonetheless. It conjured up all kinds of images from my childhood of movie and TV characters that had plenty of guts such as Tarzan (and Jane and Cheeta), Superman, Lone Ranger (and Tonto), Toooooom […]