Category Archives: Writing Craft

How to Build Powerful Character Relationships

Character relationships are, in many ways, the glue that holds a story together. Almost every tale has at least one relationship at the heart of it, often more. Rarely can a character sustain a story on their own; they need … Continue reading

Posted in Basic Human Needs, Character Arc, Character Flaws, Character Traits, Character Wound, Characters, Conflict, Emotion, Motivation, One Stop For Writers, Plotting, Show Don't Tell, Stereotypes, Story Structure, Subtext, Tension, Uncategorized, Villains, Writing Craft, Writing Lessons | 4 Comments

Fall in Love with Your Second Act

I love me some Billy Joel. I especially love this song. Granted, it’s a song that deals with a serious issue in a gentle way, but I do think that, on another, lighter level, it can also be applied to our … Continue reading

Posted in Middles, Resident Writing Coach, Writer's Attitude, Writer's Block, Writing Craft | 11 Comments

When ‘Situational’ Writing Works Better Than Plotting

Hi everyone! Help me welcome Brandon Cornett to the blog today, who is discussing a great plotting technique Stephen King uses for people who struggle with plotting. Please read on! Do you have a hard time plotting an entire novel … Continue reading

Posted in Characters, Conflict, Experiments, Focus, Guest Post, Motivational, Pacing, Plotting, Writer's Block, Writing Craft, Writing Lessons | 26 Comments

How Premise Plays into Theme

For many writers, theme is an afterthought–something they may try to figure out once the book is mostly written. But in reality, for a lot of stories, the premise actually promises a theme, or at least, a theme topic. This … Continue reading

Posted in Resident Writing Coach, Theme, Uncategorized, Writing Craft | 7 Comments

How to Find Critique Partners & Beta Readers

Outside feedback is vital to the success of your manuscript.  As I’ve quoted many times before on my YouTube channel, according to Terry Pratchett, “The first draft is just you telling yourself the story.” Our first drafts are imperfect translations … Continue reading

Posted in Critique Groups, Critiquing & Critiques, Reader Feedback, Resident Writing Coach, Revision and Editing, Uncategorized, Writing Craft, Writing Groups | 7 Comments

Tools to Make You a More Powerful Writer in 2020

The start of the year is when I pay close attention to what is happening in our industry: what publishers and organizations are focusing on, the changes occurring on sales platforms, and what author advocates are suggesting writers pay attention … Continue reading

Posted in Editing Tips, Focus, Grammar, Motivational, One Stop For Writers, Publishing and Self Publishing, Revision and Editing, Show Don't Tell, Software and Services, The Business of Writing, Tools and Resources, Uncategorized, Writer's Attitude, Writing Craft, Writing Resources | 9 Comments

Build a Bridge: From Story Beginning to Main Conflict

During one of my previous posts as a Resident Writing Coach, we talked about the importance of strong goals for helping our story move forward. But as we discussed in the comments of that post, our characters can start off … Continue reading

Posted in Action Scenes, Character Arc, Characters, Conflict, Openings, Pacing, Resident Writing Coach, Tension, Writing Craft, Writing Lessons | 9 Comments

Permission to Play Video Games (Or Read, Draw, Knit, Whatever)

It happens to all of us: at some point, our creative well runs dry. There are lots of reasons for this, and one is that we become so focused on the work that we don’t allow ourselves to have fun. … Continue reading

Posted in Guest Post, Motivational, Uncategorized, Writer's Attitude, Writer's Block, Writing Craft | 7 Comments

Scrivener and One Stop for Writers: Perfect Tools For Crafting Powerful Scenes

Many of you know that Angela and I are super excited about One Stop for Writers and how it simplifies the writing process for authors. So when we get notes from writers going on about One Stop’s tools…well. Icing on … Continue reading

Posted in Motivation, One Stop For Writers, Story Structure, Uncategorized, Writing Craft, Writing Lessons | 12 Comments

Capturing an Unhappy Relationship: A Writer’s Roadmap

Relationships are a complicated beast, and if you write romance like me, then you’re wed (pun intended) to the HEA ending (happily ever after). But the reality is, we have a divorce rate of almost 1 in 2 marriages; so … Continue reading

Posted in Character Flaws, Characters, Conflict, Romance, Tension, Uncategorized, Writing Craft | 15 Comments