L.A. Kennedy

Beyond the story

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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We all need to be reminded of the simple things sometimes. Jeremiah S Blanchard Writing is a tough job. It’s an art that takes far more practice than anyone considers — especially the beginning writer. You know it’s tough because you’ve been typing and scribbling away for a while now, and you haven’t caught any traction. You …

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Debut novelist Karin Abarbanel shares four writing tips for contemporary novelists she discovered from studying the plays of the Bard for 365+ nights. Karin Abarbanel “And as imagination bodies forth The forms of things unknown, the poet’s pen Turns them to shapes and gives to airy nothing A local habitation and a name.” from A …

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by Alex Keegan Fiction is lies. There is the Great Lie, the simple fact that the story is a story and not reportage. Fiction writers, therefore are liars — and they have to be good ones.George Scithers & Darrel Schweitzer, 1988 “The good ended happily and the bad unhappily — that’s what fiction means…”Oscar Wilde …

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Most of the time, we want to balance our scenes using dialogue, action and narrative to engage readers at an emotional level and keep them hooked. Here’s how to do that. Gloria Kempton Most of the time, we want to balance our scenes using three elements of fiction: dialogue, action and narrative. This is one …

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“You are born alone. You die alone. The value of the space in between is trust and love.” By Maria Popova “Nourish yourself with grand and austere ideas of beauty that feed the soul… Seek solitude,” young Delacroix counseled himself in 1824. Keats saw solitude as a sublime conduit to truth and beauty. Elizabeth Bishop …

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Jeff Somers Stuck trying to find a way to begin your next story? Try gleaning inspiration from these 10 famous novels that break the usual rules of writing in their first lines. According to literary science(1), completing a novel lands somewhere between climbing Mount Everest and extinguishing the sun in terms of difficulty. Note the …

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You simply cannot write a good novel without knowing your characters inside and out. Here are the top 10 questions you need to be able to answer about each of your characters. Brenda Janowitz You simply cannot write a good novel without knowing your characters inside and out. Here are the top 10 questions you …

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Author Mark Stevens shares his experience of rewriting the first book in his Allison Coil novel series after realizing he was recommending readers start with books later in the series. Mark Stevens This is a story about re-writing a best-seller. Mine. Best-seller is an overstatement. I mean local best-seller. Antler Dust was first published in …

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Alex Huntly Do you sometimes struggle with creative roadblocks? Do you find it difficult to get all your ideas down on paper? You might sketch a couple of ideas before you stop and think “I’m going nowhere.” I know this happens to a lot of creatives, it happens to me too. Here’s a simple technique …

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