L.A. Kennedy

Beyond the story

Amanda Patterson The Romantic Sub-Plot The most common sub-plot is the love interest. As I said, a love interest does not have to be a romantic interest. It could be a friend, a pet, or a family member that your protagonist loves. Writers use love interests to support protagonists and to thwart them by threatening …

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Cris Freese The alpha male is currently very much in the ascendant in romantic fiction—all you need to do is look at the proliferation of finely honed abs on Amazon’s Contemporary Romance Best Seller list for proof. From E. L. James’ Christian Grey to J. R. Ward’s Blind King and Jodi Ellen Malpas’ Jesse Ward, …

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Alex Bloom, founder of the Script Reader Pro screenplay consultancy, explains how to bulletproof your story idea and logline using one simple template. Alex Bloom The number one reason why most story ideas, loglines (and consequently scripts) fail is simply because the stakes aren’t high enough. In other words, it’s not clear enough what the …

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Find 6 lessons for writers from Bridgerton: The Duke and I, by Julia Quinn, that writers can apply to their own writing. If you haven’t read the novel yet, we do talk about the plot and reveal things about the story. So consider this your spoiler alert. Robert Lee Brewer There are some pieces of …

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by Amanda Patterson If you want to write legal thrillers, don’t miss this post: John Grisham’s 8 Do’s and Don’ts For Popular Fiction. John Grisham is an American author who is best known for his legal thrillers. He was born 8 February 1955. Before writing full time, John Grisham practised criminal law and served in the …

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Les Edgerton How to recirculate short stories into novels—that’s what I did with Hard Times—combined two of my short stories, “Hard Times” with “The Mockingbird Café”, and took that combination in another direction to come up with a novel. A lot of writers have short fiction that has seemingly died, but in reality, is still …

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Author D.M. Pulley shares her five tips for building a house or setting that comes alive for readers based off her experience working as a structural engineer. D.M. Pulley Author D.M. Pulley shares her five tips for building a house or setting that comes alive for readers based off her experience working as a structural …

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In this article, author Jonelle Patrick shares her expertise on how to create settings that will bring your reader in and make your characters shine. Jonelle Patrick Creating a sense of place can be so much more than a painterly description of the sea, or the comforting smell of coffee in the kitchen. Places aren’t …

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Using examples from William Peter Blatty’s iconic horror novel The Exorcist, Dustin Grinnell explains how to craft truly frightening horror fiction by blending the believable and the unsettlingly extraordinary. Dustin Grinnell “Fantasy, abandoned by reason, produces impossible monsters; united with it, she is the mother of the arts in the origin of marvels.” —Francisco de …

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BY ELIZABETH SIMS How do the most successful authors of our time construct their stories? The Hero’s Adventure. So what is the Hero’s Adventure? You know it already, and you may even have elements of it in the story you’re working on. But I suspect you haven’t yet methodically and thoroughly appropriated it for yourself. …

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