Wordcraft

Writing

Choosing Your Story’s Perspective

A large sculpture mimicking a scene with distance

The choice of perspective has important ramifications for a story. The best perspective will be the one that reinforces the goals of the story, matches the writer’s skill set, and feels invisible to the audience. I’ll describe the different factors involved in a story’s perspective and how they are likely to … read more »

Writing

Mastering Evocative Telling

close up of an ent

The old adage “show; don’t tell” is great advice for new writers. But with practice, writers can master many creative techniques that depart from standard showing. Evocative telling is one of those techniques, and it can add a lot to a story. Read more »

Writing

Seven Rules of Effective Prose

writing-with-pen

Refining your prose is a long process requiring practice and patience. This learning curve is even harder when you don’t know what needs to improve. These seven pillars of good prose can help you evaluate your work at the sentence level and give you something to strive for. Read more »

Writing

Narrating Layout & Position

Skeksis Ceremony from The Dark Crystal

Some writing techniques seem so simple that we take them for granted. That is, until we have to use them ourselves. So I sympathized with Jo when she asked: I am a bit confused about describing spatial relationships in fiction. How close or how far away … read more »

Writing

Breaking the Curse of Distant Perspective

telescope-paul-l

Vast literary realms are afflicted by a writing perspective with dull personality and chafing restraints. This perspective is called distant limited, and it is pervasive because it goes unexamined by many writers. Once you recognize this malady, you can choose the writing style your work … read more »

Writing

Renovate Your Sentences With Active Phrasing

Shirley_Strickland

Many writers weaken the exciting moments of their work with phrasing that resembles dry rambling. If that includes you, what you need is active phrasing. It makes prose tighter and more powerful, and it’s essential for fast-paced scenes. Follow these guidelines to make your sentences … read more »