Countdown to Outlining Your Novel: Map Your Way to Success!

As those of you who listen to my weekly podcast or follow me on Twitter and Facebook are probably already aware, I’ve been hard at work this year on the writing craft book Outlining Your Novel: Map Your Way to Success which will be released September 26th. Over the next few weeks, I’ll be sharing […]

yWriter5

yWriter Outlining Software in Action

In anticipation of my convalescence from Lasik corrective eye surgery, I skipped the usual how-to video this week and, at the request of a viewer on YouTube, created a short sequel to my popular yWriter tutorial, showing how I use yWriter outlining software once I’ve typed up all my outline notes and am in the […]

6 Reasons a Premise Sentence Strengthens Your Story

6 Reasons a Premise Sentence Strengthens Your Story

All stories begin with a premise (a battle in space, two people falling in love, a dog getting lost). But, often, the original conceptions are hazy and unformed. Sometimes, they’re not even a premise sentence, so much as the what-if question that will lead to a premise. What if a little boy’s brain grew too […]

Should You Outline Backwards?

Should You Outline Your Book Backwards?

When you think of outlines, you generally think organization, right? The whole point of outlining, versus the seat-of-the-pants method, is to give the writer a road map, a set of guidelines, a plan. It only makes sense that an outline should be simple, streamlined, and linear. An outline should put things in order. So you’re […]

What If: The Two Most Powerful Words in a Writer’s Repertoire

Almost all writers are familiar with the power of the “what if” question. Every novel, story, and article is inspired by those words, even when the question isn’t articulated. Many of us, however (myself included up until a few years ago) fail to tap the question’s full potential. Why? Simply because we don’t make a conscious effort to answer it. […]

Outlining Your Novel The 5-Step Gameplan

Outline Your Novel: The 5-Step Game Plan

Generally speaking, writers fall into two different categories: outliners and non-outliners (or, as my critique partner Linda Yezak has dubbed them, “seat-of-the-pantsters”). I’m an outliner. Mostly, I outline because I’m lazy. I hate rewriting; I hate watching my burst of pride and relief at the end of a novel dissipate in a realization of a hole-riddled […]