Lesson #79: What’s in a Setting?

In one of my college courses (I’m an English Literature major), I read a novel titled “Waiting for the Barbarians” by J. M. Coetzee. It’s an intriguing book for several reasons, but especially because of how the novel was written: it has very little defined setting. Let me explain.  The book is intentionally written to […]

Lesson #62 Strengthen Your Plot

  Read any good book on writing, attend writer’s conferences, and you’ll hear this warning again and again—beware the sagging middle. These fine folk are not speaking of the aftermath of that dozen donuts downed in despair over a deadline. Nor are they eluding to the need of sturdier foundational garments. Rather, they are warning […]

Lesson #46: Writing a FABULOUS First Line

Your first line is the opening of your story. The reader’s introduction to, essentially, these hours and hours of work which you have completed. The big hook. The main chance you have of drawing your reader’s attention… Would you rather have a so-so first line? Or a first line that makes your reader want to […]