The importance of your novel’s first chapter cannot be underestimated. It’s the chapter that introduces your book to the world – the chapter that needs to draw in agents and publishers and readers alike. (No pressure or anything!) Unfortunately, there’s no predetermined formula for a perfect first chapter. Every story is different, and so is every opening chapter. However, there are certain elements that most successful first chapters share, and it’s those that should serve as guidelines to you when you’re writing the opening of your book. Virtually nobody is able to knock out a flawless first chapter on their first draft. You may need to come back and include some of these elements during your rewrite or edit. But even if you haven’t started writing yet, it’s worth keeping the following things in mind to ensure you’re on the right track.
Roses are red. So is passion. And blood.
Coming February 14th, 2017
Fourteen Shades of F*cked Up – An Anthology
Authors: Alyson Hale, Ariel Marie, Brittney Coon, Cristina Slough, J.A. Kerr, J.L. Baldwin, Jennifer Loring, Lilly James, Marie Skye, ML Rodriguez, N. Mills, QUINN, S. Valentine, and Zack Halford
Cover Design by Rock Your World Promotions
Stock Photos via Adobe Stock
★ SYNOPSIS ★
Fourteen authors have brought you stories of pain and love.
Struggle and dissonance.
Lust and depravity.
Whether your poison is a naughty husband and wife, a kinky night out on the town, edging toward the pinnacle of pain and pleasure, or something a little more supernatural, come indulge in your deepest, darkest, most f*cked up cravings.
We promise we won’t judge…if you won’t.
★ JOIN THE PARTY ★
Interested in the Fourteen Shades anthology? Fill out this quick form, and you’ll be one of the first people to receive the link once it’s live!
When you’ve finally finished your manuscript after thousands of hours of work, the last thing you want to hear is that there’s more work to be done. But unfortunately, that’s the simple truth of the matter. Finalising your draft is an enormous achievement, but now’s not the time to rest on your laurels! There’s still a lot you need to do to get your book ready for publication. Once you’ve written, rewritten and edited and you’re satisfied with the story, it’s time to focus on the little things: the small yet important details of the writing itself. Despite (or perhaps because of) the hundreds of times you’ve read your manuscript, there are plenty of things you might have missed. Overused or unnecessary words; inelegant phrasing or exposition; long, difficult-to-read sentences… All of these things might have escaped your notice while you were dealing with bigger…
Sooner than I expected! I don’t have a release date yet beyond sometime in February, but here’s the cover and blurb. Keep up to date at After Glows Publishing, or join the After Glows Readers’ Group on Facebook.
Jon, a psychic since childhood, has never felt at home in the world, even less so after his lover died on Winter Solstice a year ago. Since his abilities failed him when he needed them most, he turns to alcohol and rejects his family’s assertion that he is a Star Child—an alien/human hybrid. When Jon’s sister suggests he should look into the legend of Handsome Fellow, Jon decides that if he cannot find happiness himself, he will bring it to others.
Erukkass’ people, a species of inter-dimensional aliens, have been observing Earth and interacting with humans for so many centuries that some Native American tribes believe their ancestors originated from the stars. After his lover passed away in what appears to be a medical accident, he accepts a scientific mission… but not for the reasons his government expects. He has located his beloved on another timeline, in another universe—ours—and he will not leave without him.
Jon returns home from work one evening to find a gift of his own—a strange young man waiting for him. Erukkass unveils one stunning revelation after another, including the truth behind his lover’s death and the nature of time itself. Can he and Jon forge a future together, or will two timelines that have always intersected, no matter when or where, finally be forced to diverge?
I’ve been crap at updates recently, but there’s good reason for it, I PROMISE. In this post you’ll find a quick rundown of those reasons (i.e. everything that’s releasing/I’m working on in 2017, subject to change).
This erotic horror series officially debuts this month, but you can get started with a couple of teasers, one of which is my story “Suck.” Check it out here.
Recently, we delved into what makes a great opener for a novel, covering the key elements to include in your first chapter. But just as there are important elements you should aim to include, there are also elements you should strive to avoid. As we discussed previously, your first chapter has the power to make or break your novel in the eyes of readers, agents and editors alike. Clichés, weak writing, gluts of information, misplaced scenes – all these things have the potential to drive away your audience. For most authors, it’s fairly easy to fall into the trap of any of the following undesirable elements. Mistakes are completely understandable, especially when you’re only on your first draft. But if you keep the following tips in mind while you…
As a writer, it’s easy to feel like you’ve completely exhausted all your ideas when you need to be creative all the time. The good news is, you can never run out of creativity! As John Steinbeck once said, “Ideas are like rabbits, you get a couple and learn how to handle them, and pretty soon you have a dozen”. If you’ve lost inspiration for a project you’re working on, or you’re looking for some tips to get motivated to write, here are some activities you can try that will help you out of that creative rut. 1. Read, read, read Perhaps the most obvious of these tips, reading is a great way to reignite your creativity. Sometimes, the best ideas are sparked from a story someone else has already written. If you plan on writing novels, reading is a great way to help you remember what you’re working towards: getting your own book on the…
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.
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
There is a romantic myth that surrounds writers. This myth is rife with infatuation, possessiveness and protectiveness: a writer is supposed to be obsessed with their work. Utterly absorbed. If their creative process stalls, or in some instances flatlines, the writer should just work harder. More rewrites, more experimentation. They should even put the draft away to gain that invaluable perspective, but ultimately come back. No matter the grief a project causes, a writer should always come back. It reads like a lover addicted to an implosive partnership. Romantic myth, prepare to be busted. Just like relationships, not all projects are meant to last forever. Some projects might not last a week. A day. A five minute type-out. Some projects you don’t have to come back for. And that’s okay. In fact, that’s healthy. Similar to a relationship that limps on well…