L.A. Kennedy

Beyond the story

Midge Gillies and Tony Benn Viewpoint As you start to write your style will emerge. Before you begin you should have some idea of how much of you will appear in the book. If you’re writing a memoir nearly all of it may be written in the first person and yours may be the only …

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Linda Newbery, Michael Lawrence and Lauren Child The main characters in fiction for children and teenagers tend, not surprisingly, to be children and teenagers, though it’s not hard to find exceptions, such as Philip Pullman’s Once Upon a Time in the North. To write convincingly, whether in first- or third-person, you need to position yourself …

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Because getting started is sometimes the hardest part of any project, here are 25 ways to start a story that writers can use to prompt their next tale. Robert Lee Brewer Because getting started is sometimes the hardest part of any project, here are 25 ways to start a story that writers can use to …

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Nancy Kress Most writers try to avoid writing flashbacks, but if you just can’t resist sending your readers back in time, fiction columnist Nancy Kress has some advice. Kress explains what makes a flashback work, and how to perfect your own time travelling techniques. Some stories behave conveniently for their authors: They take place in …

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One of the biggest bugaboos in manuscript submissions is when the author doesn’t properly introduce the protagonist within the first chapter. Here’s how to help readers meet your main character. Les Edgerton One of the biggest bugaboos in manuscript submissions is when the author doesn’t properly introduce the protagonist within the first chapter. Readers want …

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No matter what sort of character name you’re pursuing, heed common sense and follow these seven tips to make sure you pick the best names possible for your story. Elizabeth Sims Choosing a character name for your novel is as pressure-filled as picking a name for a baby. It has to suit the character’s personality, …

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How do you recognize a good urban fantasy when you see one, and if you want to try your hand at writing one, what’s the basic recipe? Here are the ingredients you need. Mishell Baker Even if you don’t regularly haunt the science fiction and fantasy section of your local bookstore, chances are you’ve crossed …

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via Freewrite Did you grow up enthralled by the stories of the Pevensie children in Narnia or Frodo and Bilbo Baggins in Middle Earth? If you dreamed of one day creating your own fantasy world to base your novels in, this article is for you. We’ll be exploring some top tips for creating fantasy worlds, …

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Why do many thrillers fail to thrill? It’s usually from a lack of suspense. Novelist Leslie Lutz shares six tips to create suspense in a thriller novel. Leslie Lutz You’ve just finished reading a chapter of your thriller-in-progress to your beloved critique group, and after your writing friends get the compliments out of the way …

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David Corbett offers a case study of the concept of pathos, a moral argument in which an everyman employs immoral means to pursue something he considers invaluable in the face of an overwhelmingly powerful person or system. David Corbett The “bad vs. worse” set-up discussed in the article “No More Mr. Nice Guys” in the …

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