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 »

82 – Working With Feedback

The Mythcreant Podcast

Getting feedback is always a perilous experience. This week the hosts share some of the experiences they’ve had over the years, from Oren learning that he included too much WWII fighter jargon in his story, to Mike’s plan for getting feedback on his campaign, to Chris making revision after revision so … read more »

Seven Common Causes of Reader Confusion

Confusion makes it impossible for readers to enjoy a story, and the unique elements of speculative fiction make it especially prone to confusion. Not only that, but because stories always make sense to their writers, head-scratching moments are difficult to eliminate without outside help. But don’t give up … read more »

Seven Rules of Effective Prose

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 »

Lessons From the Fantastic Writing of The Martian

Person in Space Suit in Red Haze - Cover of The Martian by Andy Weir

So far I’ve written six critiques of best selling books that I think are bad. Needless to say, I am not easily impressed. Then my commenters had the gall to ask for something positive. What do you think I am, a magical praise-emitting unicorn? Well, it took some doing, … read more »