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Showing posts from April, 2012

Author Intrusion

It’s one of those things that sometimes sneak into the narrative without the writer noticing and it’s not until an editor points them out that you realise you have a problem.

But what exactly is author intrusion?

Primarily, it is where the author personally intrudes the story, quite often unwittingly; they place a large proportion of themselves within the narrative, either through description, actions or through their characters and dialogue.  

Author intrusion is very common. In truth, there is always a tiny bit of us in our characters, but every character should be individual and different. And more importantly, they should be very different from the writer.

They key to spotting them is to understand what they are and how they affect your writing. There are several ways intrusion happens.

Firstly, writers very often use their own personal opinions, personal prejudices, their judgements or subconscious thoughts in their writing. Opinions, likes, dislikes, passions and pet peeves hav…

Creating Immediacy

In order to create immediacy, a writer needs to understand what it means, how immediacy works and how it impacts not just the writing, but also the reader.

Immediacy is the delicate and intimate connection between the story and the reader – if a writer lacks immediacy within the writing, then the reader might not be able to emotionally connect with the characters or the narrative, and if that happens, the reader is unlikely to enjoy the story/novel.

It is one of those elements largely overlooked by many writers, but it’s an important element that shouldn’t be ignored.

How do I create immediacy?

Immediacy means closeness. In other words, it’s looking at the closeness of your characters and your story to your reader, and how to make the reader feel as though they are not just reading your story, but they are a part of it.

To create it, you have to understand that your reader wants to become totally absorbed by the fictional world you have created. They want to be able to love the hero,…

Taking in writing advice will help you become a better writer

Everyone needs advice, especially when you are fairly new to something. It’s always good to know that there is support and experience available to you.

Those new to writing need lots of advice, support and encouragement, and there is plenty out there. The amount of resources now available to writers is nothing to what it was almost 30 years ago when I first started out. There was no such thing and instant access through the internet, since there was no internet. Everything I have learned has been through three decades of trial and error, reading countless novels, gaining the experience, dealing with editors and publishers and of course, dealing with that character-building thing called rejection.

Whether the advice you receive comes through writing magazines, through books, via teachers, or even through blog articles etc, it is worth taking note of that advice, integrating it and learning from it.

Of course, the strength of that advice is important, because not everyone who dispen…

Use of Conjunctions

A conjunction refers to a word that connects or conjoins parts of sentences, phrases or clauses, and forms part of a relationship within the sentence. There are three basic types of conjunctions:

Coordinating conjunctions – These are used to connect words, phrases and clauses – And, So, Yet etc.

Subordinating conjunctions – These join a subordinate (dependent) clause to a main (independent) clause, e.g. Jane went walking over the fields, although it looked as though it would rain.

Correlative conjunctions – These come in pairs which link words, phrases or clauses within the sentence, i.e. ‘not only’, ‘but also’, ‘just as’, ‘either or’ etc. 

As with prepositions, and the ever shifting tastes of present day fiction, it is sometimes desirable to have conjunctions to begin a sentence, and just as with the correct use of prepositions, they can add a cumulative, overall effect to the narrative, depending how you use them.

Sometimes we use them for contrast, sometimes to make a statement, s…