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Hundreds of Helpful Articles

Hundreds of Helpful Articles

We have created hundreds of articles on topics all authors face in today’s literary landscape. Get help and advice on Writing, Marketing, Publishing, Social Networking, and more. Each article has a Comments section so you can read advice from other authors and leave your own.

Best Setting to Write about in Asheville

In my article “Setting: Elements of Towns and Cities,” I wrote about how many writers believe a setting is merely a location; however setting is not just a location, but everything that would define a location as a place. The seven elements that a writer...

How Bullying Works

 In my article "The Need for Psychology Understanding,” I discussed how fiction writers need at least a basic understanding of psychology in order to write realistic content, dialogues, characters, and relationships. One such psychological concept is the ways in which biological and genetic factors can...

How to Portray Lower Middle Class Speech

It’s been said that societal class is “the last taboo.” It’s one of the few topics that people are reluctant to talk about. Writers are sometimes similarly hesitant to portray societal class in their characters. But the topic is important. Not everyone in our books and...

Why and How to Eliminate Excess Prepositional Phrases

Prepositional phrases begin with a preposition and end with an object. Some examples are:      I left my book in the house.      Her plane arrives before noon. They are useful because they add information.      Where did I leave the book? in the house    ...

Should I Use a Hyphen, an en Dash, or an em Dash?—part 2

Part 1 of “Should I use a hyphen, an en dash, or an em dash?” covered the differences between hyphens, en dashes, and em dashes, and how to use hyphens. Part 2 covers how to use en dashes and em dashes and how to create...

Should I Use a Hyphen, an en Dash, or an em Dash?—part 1

This is Part 1 of a two-part article. Part 1 covers the differences between hyphens, en dashes, and em dashes, and how to use hyphens. Part 2 covers how to use en dashes and em dashes and how to create them in Microsoft Word. Hyphens, en...

Why You Should Develop a Personal Style Manual

Style manuals, or style guides (I use the terms interchangeably), are a set of standards. They help us keep our writing and formatting consistent by establishing universal styles. Two well-known examples are The Associated Press Stylebook and The Chicago Manual of Style. Serious writers should own one...

The Dos and Don'ts of Picture Book Writing

There are general ‘rules’ concerning the writing of picture books. They exist because they are what have been found to work best for small children. If you are serious about becoming a published picture book author, pay attention to these rules. Picture books should: - tell...

What's a Children's Picture Book And Have You Written One?

You’ve written a picture book, have submitted it to agents and publishers, but you keep getting rejection slips or no answers at all. What are you doing wrong? The simplest answer to a complicated question is: are you sure you wrote a picture book? Picture...

Writing in English Might Be Harder Than You Think

You’ve probably seen the mugs and t-shirts that quote (or misquote) the much-used memory tool from an earlier generation: “i before e except after c”. Which is weird, when you think of it. Why? Because the rule falls flat instantly when you consider words like:...