Plot holes. We all know what they are: inconsistencies or gaps that defy logic in stories. And we all know they’re entirely undesirable when it comes to writing a good novel. Plot holes diminish the plausibility of a story and can have a huge effect on the way that story is viewed by readers. Your novel may be wonderfully written with great characters and an engaging plot – but leave one plot hole in there and, sadly, all your hard work may be undone. So how can you tell if your story has plot holes? And if it does, how can you go about filling them in? Let’s dive into a step-by-step process for finding and fixing plot holes in your novel.
How to find plot holes
The first thing you need to do is to determine whether your…
We all know that crafting believable characters with strong motivations is vital in fiction writing. But how do you ensure that your characters remain compelling throughout the course of your story? The answer is simple: make sure they all have strong character arcs. Below, we’ll first discuss what exactly a character arc is. Then we’ll take a look at the three main types of character arcs – change/transformation, growth, and fall – and discuss how to write each one effectively, creating characters that truly resonate with readers.
What is a character arc? A character arc is basically the journey a character undertakes over the course of a story. But this doesn’t mean a physical journey. We’re talking about an inner journey: one that makes a character grow, learn, change, evolve, or even completely transform as the story unfolds. Generally, this means that a…
The fact that I’m addicted to anything made of paper isn’t much of a secret, and I have a particular fetish for notebooks. So when I started seeing the Code&Quill ads around ye olde internet for a notebook that a) was hardcover and b) laid flat, I c) gave them my money. This video shows me opening my Monolith, though I bought a 3-pack of their little Scribe notebooks as well. Have a look, and then go visit them at http://www.codeandquill.com. I’ll follow up with the Monolith in use in the near future.
Fight scenes are common across a range of genres, from action, spy and thriller novels to fantasy and sci-fi. They’re often a physical manifestation of the conflict that’s driving your story – and they’re great for keeping things exciting for readers. Whatever genre you write, knowing how to write an authentic, exciting fight scene is an invaluable skill to have. But why are action and fight scenes so difficult to craft authentically? One of the primary reasons is that the average author doesn’t usually have a whole lot of experience with fighting in real life. And even if they do, it’s not an easy thing to translate to the page! The scene has to strike the right balance between the actual action and the other important elements, like emotion and personal stakes. With that said, let’s dive into some…
The ability to write a short story, and write it well, is invaluable to any author. Novelists in particular can benefit from regularly immersing themselves in short fiction. Writing short stories…
Develops creative and critical skills.
Provides the opportunity to expand experiences with submissions, editors and professional expectations.
Furthers your understanding of genres and potential readerships.
Helps construct a strong authorial presence and gets your name ‘out there’ as a published author.
So if you’re wading your way through the umpteenth draft of your novel, or even if you haven’t quite started yet, read on for five reasons you should stop what you’re doing (just for a bit) and start writing short stories.
1. Short stories develop your skills
As a novelist, you’re used to long-form fiction where you have the time, the space and the word count to…
Scenes drive your story forward; without them, there would be no novel. Your scenes need to keep your reader on the edge of their seat with your plot and characters because otherwise, they won’t keep reading. Looking at your novel on a scene-by-scene basis is a critical step in the writing and editing process. Here’s a list of six things you can do to make every scene super engaging for your readers.
1. Structure your scenes to maintain good pacing
You’re probably aware of the importance of structuring your novel, but having good scene structure is equally important. By structuring your scenes carefully, you will ensure your novel maintains a good pace and isn’t full of dull patches.
Creating scenes and sequels
In his book Techniques of the Selling Writer, author Dwight V. Swain highlights the importance of creating scenes and sequels. He suggests that a scene should always be…
I’ll be selling my wares (like art, journals, and an extremely limited chapbook of my blackout poetry) at this event. It’s free admission, so stop by and get your holiday shopping underway. Click the flyer for more info: