Farther and Further have similar usages, however, they mean different things. Farther relates to a physical distance (the root word is “far”). Further is a metaphorical construct. “How much farther?” “He intended to further his education.”Read More
Where one starts in the story is just as important as how that story ends. Many writers spend so much effort polishing the beginning scenes, getting the perfect starting sentences. Don’t forget to give some attention to the ending, and the middle. Every word counts.
Don’t assume that if your character is on the run from the bad guy that they can just hop onto a bus or subway car. The public transport system available will be highly dependent on city, not just country.Read More
I have recently joined a freelancing site in an attempt to drum up business. Let’s face it, struggling writers often don’t have a lot of cash; however, in going through the job listings, I’ve noticed a trend. Many writers don’t actually have a true understanding of how much editing really costs.
I have encountered many jobs where a person has a budget of US$10, but they are wanting their manuscript of unspecified length to be fully edited by an experienced editor. That in itself is a complete joke, but the sheer number of them (many of whom are located in the US) has driven me to write this post. I feel the need to highlight to my readers exactly how much time goes into editing, and why you need to be prepared to pay in the order of US$200 – US$2000, in some cases even more, depending on the type of editing you require and the editor’s experience.
It is common for writers to use music to help stimulate the creative juices, but the sense of smell can be just as powerful. Use essence. Use scented candles. Use essential oils. And vary the scent. Different smells will have different emotional responses which will be reflected in your writing.
If your character calls someone in a different country, or for that matter is calling someone on the opposite side of a large country, take time zones into account. Also consider differences with Daylight Savings.Read More
There is a term that has been bandied around the internet and is starting to make the rounds of conferences and writing forums. It's a term that describes that type of person whom one might want to hire during the early stages of a manuscript's life (or later stages if a book is struggling to gain reader engagement). The term: Book Doctor or Plot Doctor. It's an interesting buzz term. However, I have encountered other terms that also refer to the same type of editor.
Book Doctor = Manuscript Assessor = Developmental Editor
Yep, you read that right, folks. Book Doctor is just another term for a developmental editor. And guess what... That's exactly the type of editor that I am.
So, what does a Book Doctor or Developmental Editor actually do?
If you are stuck on a scene, act it out. This is particularly useful when developing the dialogue. However, you might want to have the Dictaphone app running on your favorite device. It’s almost a given that you will say the perfect line, but when you come to write it, you’ll forget exactly how you phrased it.
How many times have you gotten stuck because you can’t work out exactly what your scene looks like? It may sound like a silly idea, but bring out the Lego and build it. Your Lego settings don’t need to be perfect, however, you never know: while building your scene, you might find that one detail that had been eluding you all this time.
It is a common mantra of writers: show, don’t tell. Understanding exactly what this means is a big step within a writer’s development, however, there will be a time when it is better to tell, not show. The ride through the countryside from Oxford to Cambridge is just one of them. Unless something interesting, and relevant, happens during that journey, just tell us that it happened. You’ll put your reader to sleep, otherwise.Read More