Tag: focus your message

Don’t Get Caught Up In The “Cult of the First Sentence”

There’s this cult of the opening sentence, as if crafting a perfect first line is the key to writing a best-selling novel. Here's my take: it isn't.
book opening

A Stellar Book Opening… It’s Not About The Weather

“Never open a book with weather. If it's only to create atmosphere, and not a character's reaction to the weather, you don't want to go on too long. The reader is apt to leaf ahead looking for people." —Elmore Leonard
final edit

The Final Edit

Transforming your work from “draft” to “done” can be daunting, and the process can differ depending on the needs of a project. Here are some strategies to consider when reviewing your text, regardless of context, when preparing your final edit.
taking out the trash in your writing

Five Reasons To “Take Out The Trash” In Your Writing

Being able to edit your own writing is a great skill, but this variation on a theme is about chopping the important things you’ve been waiting too long to fix. Maybe the reason you haven't been able to fix them is because they are un-fixable.
literary merits

The Literary Merits Of Not Showing Off

In writing, music, and other art forms, there is a balance between proficiency and showing off. You don't need the latter to make your point as a writer.
readers

What Are Your Readers Thinking?

A great story told well keeps us turning pages and wakes up the voices in our heads. But there are some things you don't want running through your readers' minds. Here are five questions to avoid having your readers ask as they read your book.
writing project

Tackling Intimidating Writing Projects: Divide And Conquer

Sometimes, writing can feel like beating your head against a wall. If you're running up against an intimidating writing project, a "divide and conquer" approach might help you cross the finish line. With minimal head-banging.

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