Short Story
Posted in Home

Short Story Guide

800 words = moment in time 1300-2000 words = one concept explored 2000-3000 words = multiple plot lines, strong plot…

Opening scene
Posted in Scene Story Structure

The Opening Scene

The opening lets the reader know what’s going on, who is involved, what their relationships are and what the context…

Posted in Description Prose

Flashbacks and Memories

Flashbacks The flash-back golden rule: Memories are not for reminiscing. They serve to navigate the present! Use these to move…

Posted in Characters Home Plot Protagonist


Theme: the hero’s moral choice. Thematic questions are always the very next stop in the outline after figuring out the…

Posted in Description Dialogue Home Prose

How to describe smiles and laughter

How to describe laughter Ha ha (sarcastic) Haha (polite) Ha. (unmeant bored) Ha! (exclamation) Hehe (immature, sly) Hahaha (genuine) Haha……

Posted in Characters Prose


Characterization Explicit characterization The author literally tells the audience what a character is like. This may be done via the…

Posted in Story Structure


Scenes are one unit of action, eg a fight. Chapter: a group of various scenes Cut the previous chapter at…

supportive characters
Posted in Characters

Supportive Characters

Types of Characters Round: Name this character. Let the reader see him and hear him. Give him emotions, thoughts, desires,…

Posted in Home Scene Story Structure


Scenes are the specific stages by which your main characters motivations are enacted against opposition, internal or external (or both)….

Posted in Home Plot

Hero’s Journey

Act 1 Ordinary World Catch a glimpse of the hero’s daily life in the status quo world so the reader…

Show don't tell
Posted in Home Prose Story Structure

Show, don’t tell (and pace)

What is Showing Showing allows for immersion of the reader into the fictional dream. Showing is experiences with an illusion…

Posted in Home


Metaphors and Similes Metaphors beat similes. Similes go like “teeth like a wolf “. It paints a bit of a…

Posted in Home Prose


1 Word-Level Specificity vs vagueness Example:The animal moved through the place with the thing.The greying Dobermann ran through the moonlit…

Posted in Home

Solving the Floating Heads Dialogue Problem

A scene is not as engaging or dynamic when two (or more) characters do nothing but talk.

Posted in Home Writer & Readers

Curing Writer’s Block with Morning Pages

Unblocking with Morning Pages Morning pages are three pages, written by hand (!) about whatever comes up in your head….

Posted in Dialogue Home


Writing realistic dialogue is the sleight of hand magic of storytelling. Factual information wrapped in a false sense of reality,…

Posted in Agent Home Publishing Query Writer & Readers

AIDA Persuasive Writing

Persuasive writing techniques help you write better openings and improve your query letter.

Posted in Agent Publishing

Literary Agents

The agent takes a percentage and exclusive rights. It buys you the agent’s connections, his negotiation skills, his editorial suggestions…

Posted in Publication Process Publishing

What happens after Submission

If the hook was great enough, someone will start reading the synopsis. If not, your manuscript is tossed onto the…

Posted in Publishing Query Synopsis

How to Submit your work

Find editors/agents Agents are always looking for new authors. That’s how they stay in business. Still, you need to make…