The Writing Process

Writing

Striking an End Note That Resonates

Man walks toward glowing open doors of castle

Writers frequently obsess over their opening paragraph, hoping to make a great first impression. But the last impression also matters. It sets the mood that the reader walks away with, giving it a disproportionate impact on how they feel about the story or whether or not they recommend it … read more »

Writing

Five Tips for Giving Developmental Feedback

A painting of monks working on illuminated manuscripts.

Developmental editing is big-picture editing. Dev editors rarely look at grammar, punctuation, or even awkward sentence structure.* Instead, dev editors look at issues like plot structure, character consistency, and whether the climax fulfills all the promises the author made earlier in the story. While test readers … read more »

Storytelling

How to Turn Your Concept Into a Story

Puzzle in progress

You have a flash of inspiration, but once you sit at your keyboard, that inspiration melts into a murky mess. You’re not sure where your story is going, only that it isn’t getting there. With each attempt at plotting, your excitement is whittled away. Finally … read more »

Inspiration

Ten Ways to Generate Story Ideas

Derivative of how an idea starts by Lissachoa and Magic tree4 by pan.li75. Available under CC SA 3.0.

When storytellers are asked where their ideas come from, many don’t know how to answer. Idea generation is a personal process that relies on the subconscious mind. But that doesn’t mean you can’t learn how to harness your imagination. It’s just a matter of discovering … read more »

Writing

Troubleshooting When You’re Stuck

writers-block

At some point, writers must face hurdles that prevent them from working. Frustratingly, these barriers can appear at random, even for storytellers with a long history of productivity. But that doesn’t mean you can’t troubleshoot and resolve these problems. Read more »

Writing

Writing a Short Story vs a Novel

A big horse walking alongside a miniature horse.

With the dawn of online publishing, we have more options for story length than ever before. Micro fiction, flash fiction, novelettes, and novellas all have a market online, and most writers will transition to a different length during their careers. It can be confusing to … read more »