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8 Short Story Writing Tips from a Dean of Creative Writing

snhu.edu – Tuesday February 13, 2018

I love stories. It's safe to assume that applies to all fiction  writers. Novels allow us to weave complex narratives that evoke authentic worlds and intriguing characters. The benefit of a novel is that it gives a writer the time and space to build a fictional, yet believable, world. It can also be argued that it gives writers too much time and space.

Short stories can also contain rich settings and compelling characters, but they force efficiency upon a writer. While this might seem frightening at first, I find that the confines of a short story often boil the work down to its most important, and compelling, parts.

So, where do you start? There is no magic formula, and each writer follows his or her own unique process, but I hold to eight general guidelines when sitting down to draft a short story.

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John McPhee's writing advice, why you should go to a writing workshop and David Bowie's reading list

abc.net.au – Tuesday February 6, 2018

We sit down for a writing class with Pulitzer Prize winner and acclaimed non-fiction author John McPhee.

The New Yorker writer is best-known for his meticulously-researched and wonderfully evocative pieces about everything from conservation, to basketball, to one book all about oranges!

His latest book, Draft No. 4, details his writing process – including the strange maps and one-of-a-kind computer system that are integral to his process.

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Romance fiction authors reveal their secrets to writing about love and sex

perthnow.com.au – Saturday February 3, 2018

THE age of the alpha hole — the brooding, brutish alpha male that would set hearts aflutter in the bodice-rippers of yore — is over. The nice guys have won.

These days, the men steaming up the pages of romantic fiction are single dads, emotionally vulnerable Regency lords and bikies yearning to swap guns for groceries.

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5 Writing Tips: Laura Lippman

publishersweekly.com – Friday February 2, 2018

Writing is a sedentary gig unless one has a treadmill desk. But I have long believed writing and working out are complementary disciplines. And it's not just that moving counterbalances the effects of sitting in a chair for so many hours every day. I've long believed that the work-out life has lessons for the writing life. I've "solved" a lot of books while at the gym, in part because I'm not trying to solve them at that precise moment. When you're loose, focusing on a physical task, it's amazing what can happen in your head. And it turns out that a lot of advice given to people who want to exercise will also work for those trying to establish a writing routine.

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The Many Joys of a Writing Workshop

nextavenue.org – Thursday February 1, 2018

For two years, I had the pleasure of guiding a writing workshop that involved women ranging in age from their 40s to their 70s. Only one of these women was a professional writer, and only a few aspired to seeing a piece through to publication. Yet all of them were devoted to the weekly workshop, which had existed for several years before they invited me to take the helm.

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Dear younger writer self, can I give you some advice?

irishtimes.com – Thursday January 25, 2018

Joan Brady on taking the scenic route to write her novel, missing her deadline to go from journalist to author by a mere 20 years.

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What’s involved in being a writer? A few observations

sanluisobispo.com – Wednesday January 24, 2018

I get questions from time to time about what it’s like to be a writer. So, here are a few of them, along with some I’ve asked myself, and the answers I’ve come up with.

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I often reward writing a thousand words with a latte and eight jammie dodgers

irishtimes.com – Wednesday January 24, 2018

Louise Beech: Writing without a deal, agent or audience means you can be the most honest you’ll probably ever be

Adversity is a great place for inspiration. It lends a sort of desperation, a need to create and make something good when the world seems against us. It’s not a great place to permanently live, but without experiencing it for at least a good period of time we don’t grow, survive, or scream to be heard. During adversity, we write hungry. I mean this in a spiritual way, not literally, though it can help to be physically hungry too. I often reward writing a thousand words with a latte and eight Jammie Dodgers.

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Why Writing Network Startups Are Banking On Serialized Storytelling

forbes.com – Sunday January 21, 2018

The publishing industry might not be as buzzy as film or TV, but it still attracts its share of startups: Startup database Angel List currently holds 2,261 companies under the "publishing" rubric, at an average valuation of $3.7 million.

Granted, many of these are news curators or offer website templates, but of the fiction-centric startups, the success stories are built on a strongly engaged base of users. How do these writing networks chase engagement? They master the art of page-turning addiction.

Serialized storytelling isn't new. Serialized folklore and literature includes Homer, Dickens, and 1,001 Arabian Nights. The concept adapts to new formats: Pulp fiction has profited from their heroes' endless exploits since the dime store novel, and the 1920s-era Stratemeyer Syndicate further improved on the model with ghostwritten series like Nancy Drew, the Bobsey Twins and the Hardy Boys. These books promoted previous stories at the front of the book and often ended with previews teasing the title of the next installment — and the syndicate even instructed writers to end chapters and even pages mid-scene. The result was a literal $0.50 page-turner.

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Award-Winning Author Judy Blume Shares 6 Inspiring Tips From 50 Years of Writing (and 85 Million Books Sold)

inc.com – Sunday January 21, 2018

When I was a kid I loved to read Judy Blume books: Tales of a Fourth Grade NothingBlubberDeenieFreckle JuiceSuperfudge. They addressed themes and issues other books I was reading at the time didn't cover. Her stories spoke directly to me, as if she could see right into my curious, hyper-sensitive, insecure pre-teen head.

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