Showing posts from January, 2020

Can Reading Improve Your Writing Skills?

There is lots of advice out there when it comes to writing, mainly because other writers have gone before us – they’ve been there, done it and written the book – therefore all their advice from their own struggles now helps future writers. But one of the best snippets of advice any would-be author should follow is to read books. Not the ‘How to’ kind, but the fictional books of famous authors, but lots of fictional books in different genres by different authors. Why?   Because reading other writers will expose would-be authors to different styles of writing, different genres, different authorial voices and different approaches to the craft. Seeing how our favourite authors write can be inspiring. They are experienced writers, so by reading their stories, we learn how sentences are structured, how characters act and react, how conflict is woven through the story, how themes emerge, how they’ve used language and so on. We can see how they’ve set out dialogue and how they describe

Narrator/Character/Author – What is the Difference?

Every work of fiction will have a narrator, the person who is telling the story to the reader. It’s worth noting, however, that the narrator isn’t the author, as some writers mistakenly think, although – and this is where is can get confusing – the narrator can be a character in the story. This might sound baffling, but in reality it isn’t. It depends on the type of narrator you’ve chosen for your story. In effect, the narrator is an onlooker who is relaying the story of the characters to the reader. The author creates, the narrator relates and the character lives the story. The different viewpoints available to writers offer different ways to approach narration. There are number of narrator types to choose from: The 3rd person omniscient narrator is not usually a character in the story, but is an all-seeing, all-knowing outside observer who knows what all the characters are thinking, feeling and doing, and refers to them as ‘he/she or they’. In other words, this narrator k

Manuscript Rejections

Submitting to literary agents or publishers is always daunting, because success is not guaranteed. There is no way around it – the reality is that writers will face rejection. But it’s how writers deal with and understand rejection that really counts. Rejection shouldn’t be seen as a bad thing. The word ‘rejection’ is already a negative word in everyday life – it means not good enough, unwanted or rubbish – so regardless of why a manuscript may have been rejected, the writer will automatically think it’s a rejection of them personally, simply because of the negative tones of the word itself. Any rejection will feel like a punch in the guts. That’s the reality. It feels that way because writers invest months, even years, into a novel, only for someone to point out things wrong with it. Any rejection will make you feel disappointed and even dejected, maybe even angry. These are all normal responses. But the rejection is not about you. It’s not personal. The agent or publisher does