Research is a fundamental part of writing. Sometimes we think we know everything about a topic or place, but it’s always good to check the facts. Readers are savvy, and an error can pull them right out of your story. It happened to me while reading a well-known book set in Germany. Dialog yanked me out of the story and I turned to the back cover to check, knowing only an Australian author would use that phrase not a German, and I was right. Continue reading “The importance of research”
I’ve been working with writing groups for many years after struggling on my own for over a decade. My critique group consist of authors at the beginning stages right up to those who have published a long list of books, and facilitators with impressive writing credentials. Continue reading “Are you contemplating joining a writing group?”
One of the writing tips I’ve heard repeatedly is read, read, read. About a year back I read Haruki Murakami’s 1Q84. What an uninspiring title, right? The book had been recommended, so I ploughed through the 900 or so pages and kept repeating to myself, I wish I could write like this. Continue reading “Learning from authors”
I thought writing an 80 000 word manuscript a daunting task, but now I know that’s the easy part. I shared my story with my writing group, and because I made changes from their suggestions, I thought I was almost done.
Now I’m in the middle of yet another edit where my focus is verbs — those boring passive verbs; my favourites I repeat far too often; and ones needed to convey a character’s feelings without spelling it out.
Today, our editor/facilitator announced to our group, “Focus on one thing at a time in an edit,” and I wished everyone had pounded their fists on the table with applause because her advice reminded me, I’m on the right track.
Editing is a daunting task, so don’t try to fix everything at once, and remember my tip from an earlier blog about allowing time in between edits.