4 Signs Your Strong Female Character Might Still be a Sexist Stereotype

Women have not always been portrayed well in fiction, with female characters often being relegated to little more than objects or plot devices. Real-life women grew tired of their fictional counterparts always being in in need of rescue or stuffed into refrigerators, and the Strong Female Character was born. The Strong Female Character archetype was well-intended. … Read more

Ways to use your protagonist's sidekick

6 Ways to Use Your Protagonist’s Sidekick

Ah the sidekick. Dimwitted menace or valuable tool? Many sidekicks are written poorly and with the primary role of providing comic relief or making the protagonist look good. This sort of sidekick can work in some forms of fiction, but is mostly unsympathetic. But writers are sometimes afraid that making their sidekick competent will make … Read more

Writing prompts

23 Writing Prompts to Get Your Creative Juices Flowing

Many writers use prompts to just write something because the only way to get better at something is to keep doing it. I agree wholeheartedly that you have to write to get better at writing, but repeatedly writing useless garbage is only going to get you better at writing useless garbage. I like to put writing … Read more

Storytelling lessons from Six of Crows

2 Storytelling Lessons from SIX OF CROWS

I read the first chapter of Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo for #FirstChapterFriday and enjoyed it so much that I decided to read the rest of the book. I loved it and, as I can never turn off my editor brain, I pulled out two great storytelling lessons this book has to teach writers. 1. Don’t … Read more

Characterisation tips from harry potter

3 Characterisation Tips from Harry Potter

In this video I bring you three characterisation techniques using examples from Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone by J.K. Rowling. Learn how word choice, actions and dialogue can help you develop your characters!

How to develop a character

How to Develop a Character

(Video transcript) I don’t like character questionnaires and profiles because knowing things about someone is completely different to knowing someone and if you’re going to follow a character through a story you need to know who they are. Characters navigate the plot by making decisions and acting and it’s important to be able to anticipate … Read more

How to turn a story premise into a plan

How to Turn a Story Premise into a Plan

How to Turn a Story Premise into a Plan (Video transcript) In my last video I talked about how difficult it is to start a story from just an idea and that it’s best to develop that idea into a premise before you start writing or you’ll have an increased chance of getting stuck. But while … Read more

Storytelling lessons from The Sin Eater's Daughter

4 Storytelling Lessons from THE SIN EATER’S DAUGHTER

After reading the first chapter of the Sin Eater’s Daughter by Melinda Salisbury for #FirstChapterFriday, I decided to finish the book. The first chapter started out great, but I noted that the second half of it took a bad turn and hoped that the story would right itself in the following chapters. It didn’t. Here are … Read more

Using more than one point of view can enrich your novel part 1

6 Ways Using More Than One Point of View Can Enrich Your Novel (Part 1)

It seems there’s a lot of hate out there for novels written from more than one point of view, so let me again defend something that’s apparently unpopular. One of the benefits of being a book editor is that you come to learn that no technique is inherently good or bad. Execution is key. So when … Read more

Storytelling lessons from I Am Legend

4 Storytelling Lessons from I AM LEGEND (the movie)

SPOILERS AHEAD I like using examples when writing about storytelling techniques and found a few good ones when watching I Am Legend the other day. Movies and books aren’t the same thing, but that doesn’t mean you can’t learn anything about storytelling from watching a movie. Here are the lessons I Am Legend has to … Read more