Writing

A Complete Guide to Beta Reading

Hands with pen marking up paper

Most writers rely on one or more beta readers to help them improve their work. In the right circumstances, beta reading is an invaluable tool. Unfortunately, it’s so full of potential pitfalls, it can weaken stories rather than improve them. Here’s what you should know … read more »

Crafting Micro Stories

Micro stories are not only great fun, but excellent practice for writers. Creating micro stories forces you to tighten your prose – an essential skill for any kind of writing. Naturally, these tiny narratives come with challenges of their own. Let’s look at this unique … read more »

Five Essentials of Omniscient Narration

What do Discworld, Alice in Wonderland, Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, and Lord of the Rings have in common? If you guessed “omniscient narration,” then you’re right, but you also cheated by reading my title. No matter – I will still share the secrets of this powerful but challenging … read more »

Five Speculative Fiction Novels You Can Learn From

What we read influences what we write, often without our conscious intent. So if you’re working on your writing skills, pick your books carefully. Great books can show you how it’s done. Terrible ones can encourage poor habits. But which books are great? If you’re new … read more »

Ten Ways to Switch Up Your Sentences

Fiction is made of people doing things, and the standard “protagonist verb object” is a strong way to write that. But if you structure all your sentences that way, you’ll have a monotonous mess on your hands. When that happens, it can be a struggle to inject some life into stale phrasing. To keep your head from hitting the desk, I have some quick ideas you can use. Read more »