Categories
Writing craft

Writing skills: How to improve yours 10 ways

Writing skills: How to improve them, make your writing sing? It takes knowing the canvas of grammar, plus having the many colours, brushes and techniques of a robust vocabulary and imagination. Try these 10 ways to get better:

Categories
Writing craft Writing style

Tone in writing: How do you build a novel’s tone?

Tone in writing refers to a complex mix of attributes. The mood, register, attitudes and other values conveyed through details such as word choice, sentence structure and the speaker or narrator’s attitude to their subject. Read examples of tone in writing that show what creates tone in a novel or story:

Categories
Writing craft

Writing first lines: 100 bestsellers’ lessons

When telling a story, your opening sentence needs to be catchy, so readers continue. The best first lines of books show us the common devices authors use to grab our curiosity. We analyzed 100 New York Times bestsellers’ first lines to share the following insights:

Categories
Writing craft

Writing a good book: 10 ingredients of great novels

Writing a good book is something every fiction writer aspires to. When writers ask for help writing a book, a popular question is ‘Is my idea good enough?’ Having a great story idea to start with helps. Yet a satisfying novel is a combination of many key components. Here are 10 ingredients that will make your book better:

Categories
Writing craft

7 lessons from books made into movie adaptations

Many authors who have had books made into movie adaptations have become multi-millionaires almost overnight. Why are some books primed for screen adaptation from the start? They share in common strong high concepts, great structure, visual flair and more. Read 7 lessons from books adapted for screen that will help you make your novel blockbuster material:

Categories
Grammar and punctuation Writing craft

Writing tenses: 5 tips for past, present, future

Understanding how to use writing tenses is challenging. How do you mix past, present and future tense without making the reader giddy? What is the difference between ‘simple’ and ‘perfect’ tense? Read this simple guide for answers to these questions and more:

Categories
Writing craft Writing style

How to make a good story excellent: 9 steps

Learning how to make a good story great requires mastering the essentials of writing craft: Plot (cause and effect), characterization, narration, description and dialogue. If you’ve written a good story but feel it could be more interesting, these 9 steps will help you transform it into a better first draft:

Categories
Grammar and punctuation Writing craft

Great grammar tips: 7 reliable resources for writers

Great grammar gives your writing power. The author Joan Didion once said ‘Grammar is a piano I play by ear… All I know about grammar is its infinite power. To shift the structure of a sentence alters the meaning of that sentence, as definitely and inflexibly as the position of a camera alters the meaning of the object photographed.’ Develop your own ear and writing skill using these 7 resources:

Categories
Writing craft Writing description

Descriptive verbs: 7 tips for avoiding weak adverbs

‘Don’t use adverbs. Only ever use descriptive verbs.’ This is a writing ‘rule’ often repeated, partly thanks to Stephen King’s strong views on the subject. It’s true that beginning authors often use adverbs to cover up bland dialogue or action. You don’t have to avoid adverbs completely, however. Here are 7 ways to make sure you don’t use adverbs the wrong way in your action and dialogue: