Writing

Choosing Viewpoint Characters

Hands holding binoculars

Using the right viewpoint character can give your story a big boost. But all too often, writers choose viewpoint characters that turn their narration into an uphill battle. Whether you’d like to supplement your hero’s viewpoint with visits from side characters, or you’re unsure of … read more »

Breaking the Curse of Distant Perspective

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 »

Four Functions of Amazing Opening Lines

The perfect opening line embodies the magic of authorial voice, blended with heartfelt experience, stirred with striking prose, shaken with a mysterious essence beyond our comprehension, then poured carefully over ice. Just kidding. Read more »

How to Narrate a Riveting Fight Scene

Neo stopping bullets in the Matrix.

Many stories depend on fight scenes for action and excitement. Storytellers are used to watching marvelous fights on screen, but that doesn’t tell us how to make combat riveting with our words. So it’s no surprise Ellie sent us this question: I was wondering if … read more »

Renovate Your Sentences With Active Phrasing

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 »