Nobody likes writing the middle of a story. Not only is the middle of a story the part where writers usually quit, it’s the part where readers quit too! The middle of a story can often feel unfocused, slow, or predictable. Sometimes even published and respected stories can feel like they lose their sense of direction and purpose in the middle.
But your story needs to be told. You need to start and finish it with confidence. And the way to write an amazing, page-turning middle to your book lies in answering three essential questions.
How do you write when you don’t have time to write? When your life is full and busy with job, school, family, and other obligations, it can be tough to squeeze in writing. But don’t give up—there are ways to keep writing even if you don’t have time to sit down with a pen and paper.
Opening scenes are just hard. Figure out how to start a story right and you capture the reader, set the tone, and propel the story forward. Do it wrong, and you risk losing a reader. Here’s one opening to avoid: the empty stage setting.
ProWritingAid is a grammar checker and style editor meant to help you improve your writing and become a better writer. How does it work? And would it be a useful tool for you? I tested it to find out, and I’ll break it all down for you in this ProWritingAid review.
How many times have you heard someone say a character in a movie or book felt “flat” or cliché? As writers, we want to create strong characters our readers will fall in love with. We don’t want readers to be bored or roll their eyes at the people we’ve created. Today we’re talking with romance author Callie Sutcliffe on how to develop characters readers care about.
If you’ve ever run a marathon, or a 10K, or even a 5K race, you know that pacing is important. If you pour it on at full speed right off the starting line and keep that up without variation, you’ll run out of steam and be unable to finish.
You do the same thing to your reader if you don’t vary the pace. Fast or slow, if you don’t provide some variety for your reader, they won’t finish either. So let’s take a closer look at pacing and how it can help you create a better experience for your readers.
It’s difficult to know what to plan for when starting a novel. Is it essential to have each and every character, scene, and key change in mind beforehand? How much, or how little, do you need?
The bad news is, no matter how much you plan, your first draft is destined to be messy. But even if you’re a pantser, there are a few key questions you should answer before you start. When you do, you’ll be building your story on a rock-solid foundation that will give you the freedom to take risks that won’t cost you a ton of time and energy in the long run.
R.L. Stine is the author of over 300 books for readers ages 7 to 15. Generations of kids have been introduced to the wonderful world of horror through Stine’s Goosebumps and Fear Street series. Stine is a true master of reaching young readers, and who better to host his course than MasterClass?
In this post, I’m going to share my personal R.L. Stine MasterClass review. I’ll outline what’s in the course, what I learned and what I didn’t, and why you should (or shouldn’t!) take the class.
We’ve all been in this situation: you write a first draft, or the beginning of one, and it seems like nothing is going well. All you want to do is give up and throw everything away. It can be extremely tempting, and while it’s okay to give up on projects sometimes, you should never throw anything away.
Perhaps you’ve heard the old publishing proverb: The first page sells the book; the last page sells the next book. I’m convinced there’s a mammoth grain of truth in that. The beginning and the end of any story are critical elements that you really want to nail.
Today, we’re going to focus on how to start a story—in other words, how you can craft a spectacular beginning that will hold readers spellbound and get them to turn that first all-important page.
Who doesn’t love to laugh? A good, healthy chuckle goes a long way toward making a character more likeable, and a reader more willing to stick with that character through difficult situations. Most stories, whatever the genre, benefit from moments of humor. Yes, humor writing is hard—but these strategies will give your writing the perfect blend of levity.
If you’re like most writers I know, you want to publish a book. But not just any book: you want to publish a book you can be proud of. A book you can confidently share with friends, family, and clamoring readers. A book that will prove to them with just one glance...
Most of us try to avoid hard things. We have traffic apps to help us steer clear of wrecks and construction on the roadway. We espouse slogans like “work smarter, not harder.” We love hacks, apps, and tips to make most anything easier or more comfortable.
But what if the hard thing is the best way to become the people we want to be? What if we’re avoiding the very thing that holds the key to our growth?
Sometimes as writers, we let our characters settle for the easy life. What is the default state for your main character? Where is he most comfortable? You’ve got to get the character out of that state as quickly as possible.
“Writer” is an extremely broad term; after all, there are dozens of genres in which you might write. Poetry, novels, memoir, historical fiction, picture books, cookbooks, instruction manuals, fan-fiction, all of these barely scratch the surface of what you can do with your talents. No matter what you write, though, there are significant benefits to writing short stories that will help you learn and grow within your craft.