L.A. Kennedy

Beyond the story

Writing Mistakes Writers Make: Relying on Perfect Conditions to Write Cassandra Lipp In 2019, a year that seems so-far away now, I’d organized my life into a neat routine. I worked Monday–Friday, looking forward to Saturday mornings when I’d head to my favorite coffee shop, order a big breakfast and a pot of tea, then …

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The Writer’s Digest team has witnessed many writing mistakes over the years, so we started this series to help identify them for other writers (along with correction strategies). This week’s writing mistake writers make is lacking conflict. Moriah Richard Everyone makes mistakes—even writers—but that’s okay because each mistake is a great learning opportunity. The Writer’s …

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Amanda Patterson f you’ve ever wondered what author intrusion is, read this post. We define author intrusion and tell you how to avoid it in your stories. When we learn how to write a book, or when we are rewriting, we are told to avoid author intrusion – unless we mean to include it. What …

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by Amanda Patterson We write about the 10 description mistakes writers should avoid at all costs. When we describe well in our stories, we are firmly entrenched in a character’s viewpoint using action, dialogue, emotion, and the senses to engage our reader’s imagination. If we don’t get this right, we risk the problem of having talking, …

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by Jane Friedman It’s probably the single most despised document you might be asked to prepare: the synopsis. The synopsis is sometimes required because an agent or publisher wants to see, from beginning to end, what happens in your story. Thus, the synopsis must convey a book’s entire narrative arc. It shows what happens and who changes, and it …

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By Edith Zimmerman Earlier this week, I was reading a tweet from a writer I admire (the new “I was enjoying a novel”?), and she ended it with a parenthetical that should have had the period outside the close parenthesis (like this). But instead, it ended like (this.) I know it’s stupid, but this inconsequential …

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Writer’s Toolbox Tips From the Masters George Orwell has earned the right to be called one of the finer writers in the English language through such novels as 1984, Animal Farm, and Down and Out in Paris and London, and essays like “Shooting an Elephant.” Orwell excoriated totalitarian governments in his work, but he was …

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Joe Fassler on Seven of the Most Common Writing Tips I once heard John Irving give a lecture on his process at the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, an in-depth account of the way his novels come to be. He kicked it off by writing a single sentence on the chalkboard—the last line of Last Night in …

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by Bella Pope I’ll be the first to admit that there’s a serious problem with romantic relationships in literature nowadays. And worse, this issue seems to be overlooked by the large majority of writers — until it’s too late, that is. The problem: The unrealistic and unhealthy portrayal of romantic relationships. There. I said it. …

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by Vicki Essex One of the most fun and challenging things about writing fiction is worldbuilding. Worldbuilding is the process of creating a fictional world or universe. Whether you’re writing a fantasy world  filled with magic and feudal lords, a paranormal romance with a secret society of werewolves and vampires, or a sweet romance set …

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