Writing Lesson 3.22_Verbs That Leap, Love, or . . . Lose

Verbs, verbs, verbs. Get used to it, because now that you’re a writer, you’ll hear about them often and be told again and again to make them stronger. What in the world is a stronger verb anyway? It’s one that leaps into a reader’s visualization of a scene. It shows love or pain in such […]

Writing Lesson 3.20 – Should You Enter Writing Contests?

As you pop around the web or read writing magazines, you’ll pretty quickly discover writing contests. In fact, we even host one on this site each spring. You may mull these contests over and wonder if they’re worth your while. Winning would be fantastic! But what do you have to gain for all your effort […]

Writing Lesson 3.17 – Repairing What Lies Beneath

Re-writing / Self-editing As we consider story structure, we’ve compared it to laying the groundwork and frame for a house. We’ve planned (plotted), followed the blueprint (kept theme in mind), searched for incongruities in structure (those scenes, voices, or characters that just don’t fit), and revealed backstory clues. But when we get to the re-writing […]

Writing Lesson 3.10-Four Starting Tips for Writing a Series

Do you have story ideas that would make a great series? Lots of us do. It is fun to imagine a string of stories spun out of one group of characters or out of a single, long storyline like Lord of the Rings. On October 15th, my new novel The Red Fury released from Desert […]

Writing Lesson 3.3-Is Your Protagonist Too Passive?

Protagonists, by story-telling nature, are the ones who are in a dilemma. Sometimes that means they’ve been put upon, taken advantage of, hurt, haunted, or chased after. But occasionally, when we write about their situations, we start to accidentally create such a passive character that we’re really the only ones who are excited about what […]