What is a prologue? | Now Novel

What is a prologue (and epilogue)? Examples and tips

The different parts of a book each serve useful functions. Sometimes, authors include introductory or closing sections that stand a little apart from the main narrative, like forewords or afterwords. What is a prologue or epilogue exactly? Read on for definitions, examples and tips for using them in your own books: (more…)

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Types of antagonist | Now Novel

Types of antagonists: Creating riveting opponents

There are many types of antagonists. Sometimes in a story a primary antagonist starts out as a close ally. Characters who oppose your main character’s goals aren’t necessarily ‘bad’, yet they serve a primary function: Standing between another character and their destiny. Here are 5 types of antagonists with examples and points to remember: (more…)

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Writing techniques to polish your prose | Now Novel

Writing techniques to polish your prose

Writing techniques make individual authors’ styles distinctive. From poetic devices (such as metaphor and simile) to narrative strategies, writers use various literary techniques and in doing so create their (often unmistakable) personal styles. Here are writing techniques you can use to elevate your own writing: (more…)

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How to Begin a Novel | Now Novel

How to begin a novel: 8 ways to captivate

How satisfying is a novel that sinks its hooks in from the first page? Knowing how to begin a novel so that you captivate readers from the first chapter is key to writing a publishable book. Here are 8 ways to begin your book compellingly: (more…)

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How to Build Narrative Pace | Now Novel

How to build narrative pace using grammar

There are multiple factors that determine narrative pace, the rate at which your story’s narrated action unfolds. Tone and word choice are two factors. Yet having a good command of grammar helps too. Try these tips to build better pacing: (more…)

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Showing vs telling - balancing both | Now Novel

Showing vs telling: ‘Show don’t tell’ in narration

Show don’t tell is one of the most abused pieces of writing advice. In her essay ‘On Rules of Writing,’ Ursula K. Le Guin writes ‘Thanks to “show don’t tell,” I find writers in my workshops who think exposition is wicked. They’re afraid to describe the world they’ve invented.’ (more…)

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Character archetype examples | Now Novel

Archetype examples: Write great characters from universals

Archetypes are useful for imagining diverse, interesting characters. Literature is full of jesters and jokers, lovers, warriors, wise sages, and fools. Some of these are literal (the fool is a literal court jester who entertains a king), others metaphorical (the ‘class clown’ who loves to entertain). Read archetype examples and tips for using this concept […]

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Good character flaws for villains | Now Novel

Good character flaws: Create complex antagonists

Good character flaws are key to a believable character. Flawed characters create suspense – we wonder whether their flaws will get the best of them. The imbalances in their natures may create weaknesses that give others the upper hand. Here are tips to create flaws for antagonists or villains (i.e. characters who stand between your […]

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Plot structure tips | Now Novel

Plot structure: How to shape an intriguing plot

Plot structure or narrative structure is a key element of story. Even the most simple children’s stories have story events that relate to each other, showing intriguing cause and effect, action and reaction. Here are tips for shaping your story so there is satisfying connection between scenes and events, starting with a definition of plot […]

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