The Secret Importance of Readability

The importance of readability in a novel is an exhaustive conversation, but a necessary one for writers wanting to sell books. Word processing and editing programs offer a wide variety of grade level and reading ease scales to determine who might be able to read and understand your work. Some writers analyze this closely while… Read more »

creating engaging characters

#5onFri: Five Tips for Creating Engaging Characters

We love, hate, and cry over fictional characters. They can be our best friends, first loves, and most inspiring mentors. So how can we, as writers, make sure our stories are populated by characters readers care about? It’s not enough to have so-so characters, and we definitely don’t want them to be flat or boring…. Read more »

A Deep Dive into Short Forms: Playwriting

My next few articles will act as a deep dive into specific short form works. We’ll examine a piece from each short form and look into its inner workings to find the path to success in our own short form pieces. I confess that I don’t regularly read plays. I’m not a theater maven. And… Read more »

Lights Out: James Scott Bell’s Signpost Scene #11

Hi writing warriors, and welcome back to studying and understanding James Scott Bell’s genius breakdown of a plot’s 14 signpost scenes (as discussed in his craft book Super Structure)!  If you recall from my last month’s column—featuring Signpost Scene #10, Mounting Forces—we’ve forged forward into the last act of the story. In other words, it’s… Read more »

#5onFri: Five Tips for Surviving Rejection

Rejection. Nobody likes it—most writers experience it. The rejection tallies of famous books are something of a Holy Grail for writers: J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone was rejected 14 times Margaret Mitchell’s Gone With The Wind was rejected 38 times George Orwell’s Animal Farm was rejected because “It is impossible to sell… Read more »

story inspiration from Finnish Myths

Mythic Storytelling Inspiration: The Women of the Kalevala

In the article before last, I shared the tale of one of the lesser-known Irish mythic figures, Tlachtga. This time around I’m delving into my Finnish heritage for some mythic inspiration. The Kalevala is the national epic poem of Finland, compiled and edited by scholar Elias Lönnrot in its final form in 1849. Professionally, Lönnrot… Read more »