One of the many writing tips I received from my writing group was read, read, read—especially in the genre that you’re writing in. But finding a good bookstore these days is not as easy as it once was because many of the small diverse bookstores have gone out of business, and purchasing on line is not the same as holding that book in your hand.Continue reading “Little lending libraries”
Category: Writing tips
I recently completed the first draft of my fifth manuscript that’s set in India. I challenged myself to write at least a thousand words a day and planned to complete the work by Christmas. When I reached that goal, it was time to take a break—time to read more again and do some of the activities I’d set aside.Continue reading “What to do after that first draft is done”
This is a tip I learned from one of our critique facilitators, Julie Ferguson, who led our local writing group for decades. Unfortunately (for us) she has since moved cities, but I haven’t forgotten her many gems of advice while editing.
Read aloud. Two things happen when I read my work aloud. Firstly, I hear what I’ve written more clearly than merely reading in my head. Secondly, when I stumbled on a phrase, it usually means there’s something not quite right with what I’ve written.
Have you ever read a book where a word keeps popping up? I recently read a book that had a paragraph where three sentences began with and then. Another highly praised English author I read had me gritting my teeth at her use of began. It appeared over one hundred times in her otherwise great novel.
This kind of repetition can pull a reader out of a story, so I save lists of — words to use instead of — because it’s easy in a manuscript to repeat favoured vocabulary. I also have a short list of words I over use — that, looked, walked, relieved, for example. The list raises my awareness when I’m at the editing stage.
But opposing this suggestion is a tip I learned from author, Julie H. Ferguson about repeated words.Continue reading “Those favoured words”