L.A. Kennedy

Beyond the story

A mixed construction is a sentence with incompatible elements that begins with one type of structure and shifts to another type of structure. In these sentences, the speaker sets out to say one thing and abruptly switches to something else, resulting in confusion. A sentence that is logical has a subject and a predicate. When …

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Via The Guardian Elmore Leonard, Diana Athill, Margaret Atwood, Roddy Doyle, Helen Dunmore, Geoff Dyer, Anne Enright, Richard Ford, Jonathan Franzen, Esther Freud, Neil Gaiman, David Hare, PD James, AL Kennedy Elmore Leonard: Using adverbs is a mortal sin 1 Never open a book with weather. If it’s only to create atmosphere, and not a …

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Death to clichés. Less is more. Writing is painful–here, the greats tell us how to do it better. By Belle Beth Cooper I’ve been reading some advice from successful writers lately and exploring what their routines are like to see what I can learn. Here are six of the most common pieces of advice I …

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Highlights from 12 months of interviews with writers about their craft and the authors they love. Joe Fassler This year, I talked to nearly 50 different writers for the By Heart series, a weekly column about beloved quotes and cherished lines. Each author shared the life-changing, values-shaping passages that have helped sustain creative practice throughout …

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By Charles Finch I spend a lot of time thinking about a Raymond Chandler quote I once read. “The perfect detective story cannot be written,” he said. “The type of mind which can evolve the perfect problem is not the type of mind that can produce the artistic job of writing.” Well — shoot. It …

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By Madison Malone Kircher What makes reading a good mystery so satisfying? A writer’s hard work. A complex story à la Gone Girl doesn’t just pop out of a writer’s brain fully formed on a random Tuesday. Giving readers what they crave is about structure and pacing and, ultimately, originality. In 2019, it’s also about …

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By Harry Guinness Writing is hard, but don’t overlook the difficulty — and the importance — of editing your own work before letting others see it. Here’s how. The secret to good writing is good editing. It’s what separates hastily written, randomly punctuated, incoherent rants from learned polemics and op-eds, and cringe-worthy fan fiction from …

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“When you can’t create you can work.” By Maria Popova After David Ogilvy’s wildly popular 10 tips on writing and a selection of advice from modernity’s greatest writers, here comes some from the prolific writer and painter Henry Miller. In 1932-1933, while working on what would become his first published novel, Tropic of Cancer, Miller …

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By: Tim Knox One of the downsides to becoming a fulltime author or writer is that, by its very nature, writing can be a very lonely business. Typically, it’s just you and a computer, shut off from the rest of the world, all alone with your thoughts. If you’re someone who is not totally comfortable …

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By Emily Temple You know the feeling: you’re staring at the black computer screen, blinking occasionally—staring and blinking, staring and blinking, until the cursor starts to blink back and you have to go to bed for a while. Maybe you’re staring and blinking at an actual, physical blank page, in which case you should definitely go to bed …

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