Writers, The Time is Now

I know writers who have struggled for decades to complete their first novel. They work on their novel for a while, then get distracted, put it in a drawer, fish it out...

character suggests plot

Character Suggests Plot

“The beginning of a plot is the prompting of desire.” – Christopher Lehmann-Haupt Our idea of our screenplay or novel is never the whole story. As we inquire into the...

Getting Started On Writing Your First Novel

3 Secrets for Getting Started On Writing Your First Novel

Every writer struggles with getting the story from imagination to the page. The first-time novelist confronts the special challenge of having never done this before. Here are three quick tips...

act one: maintaining tension in your writing

Act One: Maintaining Tension

“A writer writes not because he is educated but because he is driven by the need to communicate. Behind the need to communicate is the need to share. Behind the...

dealing with fear

First-Time Novelists: Dealing with Fear

Many first-time novelists share a similar fear: “What will people think?” It looks slightly different for each writer. What will my parents think when they find out I have these thoughts?...

writing act three

Writing Act Three: Our Hero Accepts the Reality of His Situation

It can be frightening and exhilarating to realize that our story is bigger than we are, that in fact, it does not “belong” to us, that we are simply a...

self-publishing

Opportunities in Self-Publishing

The goal of every first-time novelist is to see her book between covers. The paradox is that when we make this goal more important than the story, we tend to...

humor is not writing funny

Humor Is Not About Writing Funny

Humor connects us. It makes us care. I don’t mean one-liners. Humor is not about jokes, it is about human behavior. It’s a vital aspect of any story, adding depth,...

Storytelling

How to Master Storytelling: Ask the Right Questions

“It is a parable of art that, to be universal, you must be specific. Otherwise, you are just talking about an abstraction. So you have to talk about a particular...

the end of the story

First Time Novelists: The End of the Story Informs the Beginning

In Steven Covey’s book, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, he states: “Begin with the end in mind.” For first-time novelists, this is helpful advice. But let’s clarify. When...