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The Character’s Core

Characterization takes work to make them believable and three-dimensional.  Many techniques are available to help an author dig deep into a character’s mind and heart and then share the findings with the reader through a story that grabs the readers and holds them. A guest post by novelist C.S. Larkin on the Story Fix blog covered some […]

The Case Of The Slush Pile

Agent Steve Laube of Steve Laube Agency, sends out  a newsletter daily. He and his fellow agents provide gems of knowledge to help writers understand the process of finding an agent, understanding the writing business and publishing. Even writng tips are often available on this blog at Below is an article on the “Slush […]


Suspense writing is fun for me, and I’m surprised I’ve only written four or five suspense stories out of the fifty novels I’ve had published and in stores. When I found this article I thought it was well-worth sharing  It provides tricks and tips to help you create a powerful suspense novel.  This was first published […]

Plotting and The Premise

Plotting is what creates the action in your novel. The technique varies. Some people are what writers call Pantsters or SOTP (writing from the seat of their pants) while some writers create an outline or synopsis. Often the outline or synopsis is sketchy, leaving openings to take interesting detours on the character’s journey. This allows […]

Important Tips for Self-Publishing

With the digital explosion, thousands of writers are jumping onto the self-publishing bandwagon which many avoided before. While traditional published authors have a definite edge, because they are already established as qualified writers with a host of readers who are fans of their work, self-publishing has always been a choice for some who do not […]

Sympathetic Characters

Years ago following a rejection, an author wrote to me and asked what it meant if an editor said she didn’t find her main character entirely sympathetic. While you may disagree with the editor, thinking no character needs to be “entirely” sympathetic, let’s think about this. I’ve written about villains and the need to make […]

Do You Need An Agent?

The world of publishing has changed rapidly in the past two years–even the past year. Digital has opened doors for authors out-of-print novels and for unpublished writers to make their books available as ebooks.  But one thing we know about all books is if they are not well written, if they do not hook the […]

Is Self-Publishing A Ponzi Scheme?

With the growth of eReaders–Kindle, Nook and others, self-publishing has grown.  It’s the least expensive way to get a book in front of the public, and when fewer books were available as eBooks, it offered an opportunity for authors who hadn’t gone through the processes of honing their craft, dealing with rejections, making revisions, finding an […]

The 25 Word Pitch: Grab them On The Go

Nicola Martin on her Help! I Need a Publisher! blog shares an article on “Pitch Your Book In 25 Words.” Learning how to create a short blurb appropriate for the back cover of a book is an excellent skill that will help you create a concise summary to present to an agent or editor or […]

Story Concept Template

Michael Hauge is known as one of the finest screenwriters in the country and he understands the concepts of good writing.  He is popular at writers’ conferences and I’ve had the pleasure of being part of a full day workshop with him. Subscribing to his Story Mastery site is very worthwhile.  Although he writes about screenwriting, most […]