Category Archives: Show Don’t Tell

Introducing Unique Story Elements without Confusing Readers

Story openings can be difficult as authors struggle to introduce the protagonist, show them in their everyday world, hint at what’s missing, and begin the vital process of building empathy. And all of this has to be done in a … Continue reading

Posted in Openings, Show Don't Tell, Writing Craft, Writing Lessons | 5 Comments

Story Tropes: To Avoid or Not to Avoid?

Every genre and medium of storytelling uses tropes, common themes or story devices. For example, a popular trope in the romance genre is “enemies to lovers,” where the characters start as enemies before falling in love. Most articles we come across in … Continue reading

Posted in Characters, Cliches, Emotion, Empathy, Experiments, Motivation, Plotting, Reader Interest, Resident Writing Coach, Show Don't Tell, Stereotypes, Story Ideas, Story Structure, Writing Craft, Writing Lessons | 9 Comments

Thoughtful Gifts for Writers

Each year we put together a list of gift ideas for writers – some fun, some functional. This year, let’s face it, writers have struggled more than usual. So this time around, our list focuses on truly thoughtful and useful … Continue reading

Posted in About Us, Motivational, Show Don't Tell, Stocking Stuffers, Uncategorized, Writing Resources | 3 Comments

Why Writers Should Consider NaNoWriMo in 2020

Let’s not mince words: 2020 has been a real crap sandwich. COVID has caused all sorts of struggles, anxiety, and challenges. Some of you have had work disrupted. Others wanted to travel to see loved ones and couldn’t. All of … Continue reading

Posted in About Us, Focus, Goal Setting, Motivational, NaNoWriMo Strategy & Support, One Stop For Writers, Show Don't Tell, Software and Services, Time Management, Tools and Resources, Uncategorized, Writer's Attitude, Writing Groups, Writing Resources, Writing Time | 3 Comments

Identifying Your Character’s Primary Attribute

When I think about some of my favorite protagonists, I can usually identify a trait that defines each one: Sam Gamgee: LoyaltyAnne Shirley: ImpulsivityJames T. Kirk: Boldness However, if each character was made up of only that one trait, they … Continue reading

Posted in Character Flaws, Character Traits, Characters, Fatal Flaw, Positive & Negative Thesaurus Guides, Show Don't Tell, Writing Craft | 4 Comments

The Character-Building Detail Writers Shouldn’t Overlook

The farther I get into this writing and coaching career, the more I find myself talking about details and how important it is to get them right. Whether we’re figuring out which backstory information to include or are writing characterization, … Continue reading

Posted in Characters, Occupation Thesaurus, Show Don't Tell, Uncategorized, Writing Craft, Writing Resources | 4 Comments

Sneek-A-Peek at The Occupation Thesaurus: FIREFIGHTER

About this book… Characters are as complex as people and revealing their inner layers without chunky blocks of pace-stopping description is a challenge. The Occupation Thesaurus can help you unlock one of the best tools in your show-don’t-tell writing kit: … Continue reading

Posted in About Us, Backstory, Basic Human Needs, Character Arc, Character Flaws, Character Hobbies, Character Traits, Character Wound, Characters, Cliches, Conflict, Description, Diversity, Motivation, Occupation Thesaurus Guide, Point of View, Publishing and Self Publishing, Show Don't Tell, Stereotypes, Story Structure, Subtext, Theme, Uncategorized, Villains, Writing Craft, Writing Lessons, Writing Resources | 25 Comments

3 Ways to Differentiate Your Characters

We’ve invited Resident Writing Coach Sacha Black to give us an extra dose of wisdom as she’s just released a new book that I think will help a lot of writers: Anatomy of Prose: 12 Steps to Sensational Sentences. This … Continue reading

Posted in Characters, Description, Dialogue, Editing Tips, Emotion, Focus, Pacing, Resident Writing Coach, Revision and Editing, Show Don't Tell, Subtext, Uncategorized, Villains, Writing Craft, Writing Lessons | 27 Comments

How to Describe a Location You’ve Never Visited

One of the big decisions writers make is whether to choose a real location for the backdrop of their overall story or create one of their own imaginings. Crafting a world from scratch can be a lot of work (requiring … Continue reading

Posted in About Us, Conflict, Mood and Atmosphere, One Stop For Writers, Setting, Setting Thesaurus Guides, Show Don't Tell, Tools and Resources, Uncategorized, worldbuilding, Writing Craft, Writing Lessons | 9 Comments

How a Career Can Reveal Your Character’s Deeper Layers

Did you know that before Becca became an author and writing coach, she was a teacher? It’s true. And if you know her, you’re probably thinking, I can see that. It makes sense. Why? Because when you think of a … Continue reading

Posted in Action Scenes, Backstory, Basic Human Needs, Character Arc, Character Flaws, Character Hobbies, Character Traits, Character Wound, Characters, Conflict, Description, Diversity, Fatal Flaw, Fear, High Stakes, Motivation, Occupation Thesaurus, One Stop For Writers, Pacing, Plotting, Show Don't Tell, Story Structure, Uncategorized, Villains, Writing Craft, Writing Resources | 1 Comment