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Author Archives: Rachel Scheller

4 Ways to Write a Killer Plot Twist

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When I started reading Gone Girl, I’ll admit I had high expectations. “It’s incredible,” one friend told me after recommending it and praising it profusely. “You just won’t even believe what happens … Read more

10 Writing Techniques from Bram Stoker’s Dracula

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October conjures up images of crackling fires, shivering leaves, the grinning teeth of a jack-o-lantern … and, if you’re a fan of classic horror, that iconic, fanged master of the night, Count … Read more

10 Tips for Fiction Writers from the 2015 Novel & Short Story Writer’s Market

The 2015 Novel & Short Story Writer’s Market, now in its 34th year, is hot off the presses, and today I’m sharing ten pieces of advice from the contributors to this year’s edition. NSSWM features articles on fiction craft, getting published, and marketing and promotion, as well as more than 400 pages of listings for novel and short story writers, including literary agents, book publishers, magazines, and contests that are interested in your work. This year’s edition also features access to an exclusive webinar from best-selling author Cheryl St.John, on exploring emotional high points in fiction. Read more

Writing New Adult Fiction Blog Tour

From Sylvia Day’s Bared to You to Jamie McGuire’s Beautiful Disaster, new adult fiction has arrived—and it’s hotter than ever. But there’s more to this category than its 18- to 26-year-old characters: … Read more

Online Exclusive: Both Sides of the Coin with Bella Andre

Today, Bella Andre is arguably one of the hottest names in romance. The books in her celebrated Sullivans series, filled with emotional, sexy stories of the members of the Sullivan family and … Read more

What Makes Writing Groups Work: Online Exclusive

Writing often is a solitary endeavor, one that easily can lead to loneliness. You can spend hours alone at your desk, staring at your computer screen or a blank page, without encountering … Read more

Why I Published 4 Novels in 6 Months

Hi, WD community! Today we’re sharing a guest post from J.E. Fishman, a former editor and literary agent turned author. He has penned Dynamite: A Concise History of the NYPD Bomb Squad and … Read more

Tighten the Tension in Your Novel

“Your novel is lacking tension.” “I understand the reason for this scene, but my mind kept wandering while I was reading.” “This chapter is missing a hook … I’m just not interested.” … Read more

5 Mistakes to Avoid When Writing a Fiction Series

One of the main concerns writers should have when planning and writing a series is consistency. But what does it mean to be consistent? It’s more than just keeping track of the … Read more

Essential Advice for Beginning Writers: An Interview with Kerri Majors

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Kerri Majors is the editor and founder of YARN, the Young Adult Review Network, an online literary journal of YA short stories, essays, and poetry. As if this role doesn’t keep her … Read more

What Are You Reading This Summer?

Ah, summer. Whether you’re planning to spend the sticky days of June poolside or within the refuge of your air-conditioned living room, the lazy days of summer are perfect for indulging in … Read more

Knowing When to Stop: Expectations for a Satisfying Ending

Creating Plot

Everyone struggles with how to write an ending, regardless of whether it’s a novel or a short story. Sometimes our perfect endings come to us in a dream-like vision, and other times … Read more

Special Bonus WD Interview Outtakes: Hugh Howey’s Rise to Success

At first, Hugh Howey’s decision to walk away from a small press contract and self-publish didn’t seem all that remarkable. After assuming complete control of his work, he kept his day job … Read more

Make More Time for Your Writing

It’s a common lament: I could finish my novel, if only I had more hours in the day! In fact, the universal chorus of complaint from writers of all stripes seems to be … Read more

Creating Emotional Frustration in Your Characters

Characters, Emotion & Viewpoint

Using emotion to create strong, emotional characters and move a plot is critical for any writer in any type of genre. Knowing what kind of emotion to use and how to use it … Read more

Writing Gender-Specific Dialogue

On Writing Romance

Writing dialogue to suit the gender of your characters is important in any genre, but it becomes even more essential in romance writing. In a romance novel, characters of opposite sexes are … Read more

Don’t Let Worry Drag You Down

Writers are often worriers. We’re plagued with indecision about the choices we make for our stories. We doubt the quality of our writing. We wonder if we’ll ever break through into the … Read more

5 New Year’s Resolutions for Writers

A new year, a new writerly you. New Year’s Day is a time for reflecting on the past year while thinking about the goals, wishes, and hopes for the new year ahead. … Read more

How to Write a Reader-Friendly Essay

Powerful, surprising, and fascinating personal essays are also “reader-friendly essays” that keep the reader squarely in focus. So how do you go about writing one? In this excerpt from Crafting the Personal … Read more

Writing for the Young Adult Audience

There’s no question about it: The young adult (YA) audience is a hot market, one that is steadily growing in popularity and garnering attention from young readers as well as literary critics. … Read more

4 Ways to Revise as You Write

Writers differ in their opinions of the revision process. Some balk at it–they see it as the “no fun” part of writing, and much prefer drafting and creation to fixing and rethinking. … Read more

Write Fiction that Grabs Readers from Page One

In your novel, the inciting incident is the first sign of trouble for your protagonist: it’s the catalyst, the chemical reaction, that sets the plot into motion. But the inciting incident isn’t … Read more

Writing 21st Century Fiction: A Sneak Peek

Donald Maass, bestselling author of Writing the Breakout Novel and The Fire in Fiction, now takes an in-depth, comprehensive look at the craft and method of writing 21st century fiction. You might … Read more

Create Structure in Your Fiction Using Index Cards

I was reading through some of our older science fiction titles, and I came upon Worlds of Wonder by David Gerrold (published in 2001). As I was flipping through the book, I … Read more

Create Powerful Imagery in Your Writing

We’ve heard the old montage “Show, don’t tell” so many times that it’s become stale–and what does it mean, anyway? It’s an easy phrase to utter, but how do you achieve resonant, … Read more

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