Category Archives: Voice, Technique, & Style

Introducing M.B. Weston’s Corner in YouTube

I’m starting a weekly video blog on my YouTube channel, YouTube.com/TheMBWeston.  This is official Introduction video to M. B. Weston’s Corner. I plan to discuss writing: the technical stuff we all need to know as well as the trials and … Continue reading

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Writing: Exploiting Your Readers’ Fear

Ah, Halloween. What better time to discuss the ins and outs of scaring your readers? Horror writers probably know many of these tips, but those of us writing other genres usually encounter a few scenes where we want to make … Continue reading

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Working With Editors: Eliminate Forms of “To Be” & “Had”

I’m currently working on the corrections my horror/thriller short story, “Blue Lights,” which will appear in an anthology edited by John Hartness. I figured I would write a few posts about some of the things I’m working on during the editing … Continue reading

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Tools for Writing: A Mini-Thesaurus

Why keeping a cheat sheet of common words will help your writing. When I posted a blog on:  The Writing Process: Part 7 – Editing for Grammar & Style, I mentioned using a thesaurus. I also posted a section about minimizing … Continue reading

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On writing: Use Specific Nouns & Adjectives

Think about this sentence: "Johnny smelled something delicious." Close your eyes and try to imagine exactly what Johnny smelled. How many of you are thinking pizza? How about steak? How about ice cream? Pie? Any pies out there? All of … Continue reading

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On Writing: What the Publishing Industry Can Learn From J. K. Rowling & Harry Potter

I have a few questions for those who work in the publishing industry: Would you turn down a manuscript in which the first 4 pages featured nothing but exposition, i.e. no dialogue whatsoever? Would you turn down a manuscript geared toward … Continue reading

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On Writing: How to Break the “Never Shift POVs Rule” & Get Away With It!

The first writer's conference I attended was the Naples Press Club Writer's Conference in Naples, Florida,  2005 (I think). Anne Hawkins of John Hawkins Literary Agency spoke to us about what agents want. Her class and organization amazed me, and I … Continue reading

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On Writing: How to Break the “Eliminate Adverbs Rule” & Get Away With It!

One of my favorite quotes from Stephen King is on page 125 of his book, On Writing: “I believe the road to hell is paved with adverbs, and I will shout it from the rooftops.” (King, Stephen. On Writing by … Continue reading

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On Writing: How to Break the “Eliminate Bland Adjectives Rule” & Get Away With It!

My Institute for Children’s Literature* curriculum encourages writers to use specific rather than general words. For instance, using blue jay instead of bird and cobalt instead of blue conveys a specific picture. They gave us an exercise in which we had … Continue reading

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On Writing: How to Break the “No Passive Voice Rule” & Get Away With It!

Stephen King, in his book On Writing, gives almost the best definition of passive voice I’ve read. “Verbs come in two types, active and passive. With an active verb, the subject of the sentence is doing something. With a passive … Continue reading

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