fiction writing

Setting the Scene, Part 2: Elements of a Setting

by Emilee Newman Bowles When you talk about a novel’s setting, place usually comes to mind first. But there’s a lot more to a setting than just where it happens. Review this list to see if any of these setting elements need more work in your story (and need to have greater impact on your…

How to Get on the New York Times Bestseller List

  by Lindsay Flanagan and Angela Eschler with insights from best-selling author Heather B. Moore The New York Times  Bestseller List. The very name sends shivers down your writer’s spine. You envision your books will one day be emblazoned with the badge of honor that counts you as a New York Times  Bestselling Author. You…

Internal Dialogue—Getting It Right

by Heidi Brockbank As editors, we’ve noticed that one of the tools new and even intermediate writers most often mishandle is internal dialogue. While internal dialogue (also called internal monologue) is a powerful tool the writer can use to help a reader make an emotional connection with a character, writers frequently use it in a…

Top Three Short Story Mistakes

by Kristin Ammerman Bestselling authors such as Brandon Sanderson, Mary Robinette Kowal, Jeff Wheeler, Cassandra Clare, Neil Gaiman, and others write novels as well as short stories. There are several reasons why novelists also write short stories. Sense of accomplishment: Writing something shorter that can be accomplished in a month rather than a year (or…

Show and Tell

by Sabine Berlin The other day I was sitting in a critique session as the words show, don’t tell  went off like sirens about my latest submission. This wasn’t the first time I’d heard those words, nor—I’m certain—will it be the last. But they did get me thinking. If I showed as much as everyone…