Writing Craft Tips

Writers Craft Question: What Is “Head-hopping”?

I thought I’d write about the question of “head-hopping” because I see it often in less experienced writers. Head-hopping is moving in a narrative, without breaks, from one character’s point of view into another. This is not the same as writing from an omniscient point of view, in which the story is told in third… Read more »

Writers: What’s Your Core Value?

While I was earning my MFA at Vermont College of Fine Arts, Marion Dane Bauer was on the faculty, and she gave a lecture on finding the heart of your work by finding the heart of what moves you. It often comes from your past, and is an issue that you deal with or have… Read more »

Theme, or More To the Point

Confession: I think theme is the hardest thing to define when writing a story. Often I don’t know the true story theme until I’m well into revision. What’s that you say? How can I write a novel without knowing what I’m writing about? Great question. Starting With Character Honestly, I think all great stories are… Read more »

The 1 Superpower All Writers Possess: Authenticity

I’ve been seeing the word “authenticity” everywhere lately. In webinars geared to writers, in blog posts geared to entrepreneurs, in ads for almost anything. (“Try our authentic Mexican food!”) We seem to be craving authenticity. This isn’t surprising, really, after several years in which rumors, falsehoods, and crazy conspiracy theories dominated the airwaves, and we… Read more »

Final Hot Tip: The Bad Guy (Antagonist) Thinks He’s Good

We’ve reached the end of my short hot writing tips for cold nights (even though those cold nights are still with us, here in Montana at any rate). Today I want to present a final hot writing tip – about the antagonist. Opposites Attract Protagonists in stories need counterbalancing. They need opposing forces, obstacles, difficulties…. Read more »