Category Archives: Voice, Technique, & Style

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

Posted in Editing Your Work, The World of Writing, Voice, Technique, & Style | Tagged , , , , , | 4 Comments

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

Posted in Editing Your Work, The World of Writing, Voice, Technique, & Style | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

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

Posted in Description, Editing Your Work, The World of Writing, Voice, Technique, & Style

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

Posted in The World of Writing, Voice, Technique, & Style

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

Posted in The World of Writing, Voice, Technique, & Style

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

Posted in The World of Writing, Voice, Technique, & Style

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

Posted in Description, The World of Writing, Voice, Technique, & Style