Is Your Inner Editor a Voice of Discouragement? Learn How to Harness It

The infernal internal editor is the shoulder devil common to all writers. You sit down to write a simple paragraph of description, a few lines of dialogue, a scene transition—and before your finger has even hit the first period key, your inner editor is screaming in your ear. It’s not good enough! Nobody talks that way! You […]

6 Reasons Not to Listen to Your Critique Partner

6 Reasons Not to Listen to Your Critique Partners

Your critique partners, critters, alpha readers, beta readers, proofreaders, editors, loyal slaves and subjects—whatever you want to call them, they’re a vital part of any author’s arsenal. No matter how talented and studied we may be, we’re always going to need an objective pair of eyes to look at our work and point out the […]

Why Your Opinion of Your Writing Is the One That Matters Most

Why YOUR Opinion of Your Writing Is the One That Matters Most

Sometimes it pays to think of yourself before others. Many of us grew up with the Golden Rule etched into our psyches. And most of us would probably like to think we follow that rule as often as possible. But when it comes to your writing, the Golden Rule isn’t of much use. In fact, […]

Malcolm Reynolds Firefly

Killing Your Darlings: Learn to Self-Edit Like Joss Whedon

Let’s just admit it. We all get the urge to throttle someone from time to time. Annoying coworkers, overbearing family members, and just plain nasty members of civilization—they all bear the brunt of our frustrations and our mumbled threats. When it comes to our fiction, however, we tend to be a little more lenient about […]

Putting Your Writer’s Ego in Your Back Pocket

I’m lucky. Everything I write turns out flawlessly. I have perfect instincts that ensure everything I write is right on the mark. I know the instant I write something crummy, and I’m able to toss it out the window before anyone else ever gets a glimpse of it. By the time my words reach my […]

Should You Keep Your Writing a Secret?

I spent most of 2006 preparing to write a story about an apparently amnesiac young woman who is rescued by three very disparate friends during the Battle of Britain in 1940. Almost from the very beginning, this tale of mistaken identity, murder, and disappearing royalty had me bursting with excitement. I couldn’t wait to begin writing. […]

How I Edit Fiction

No two writers write in the same way. But even fewer writers edit in the same way. We all wield our red (or blue) pens (or pencils), hacking flabby words and injecting strong verbs and nouns in their places. We all share the end goal of a crisp, clean, beautiful final draft. And we all pull […]