This link list will now be a monthly round up. Life is just too demanding at the moment to do it more often, but it will remain a selection of posts and articles on writing that have caught my eye over the last few weeks. Enjoy!
Using Author Pen Names on Facebook – and Getting Locked Out! Crucially important post by Shoshanna Evars at The Writers Challenge for those of us who have FB accounts in our pennames. Bookmark this cautionary tale somewhere, kids. It could be very useful some day.
I hate strong female characters – the recent sad kerfuffle of wounded masculinity in the blogosphere re the role Charlize Theron has in the latest Mad Max incarnation, and the rise of series such as Agent Carter and the new Supergirl, makes this golden oldie about characterisation very topical. A good article, worth a read.
One Reason You Will Fail At Writing – “You will fail at writing if you do not understand that you are not an Arteeste, writing for love. You are a business.” by Shantnu Tiwari
Don’t Attribute Dialogue – Jonathan Ball at Writing The Wrong Way. This is a wonderful post. “…the very presence of dialogue attribution weakens dialogue and muddies character action…” Yup! I must do better. I must do better…
Unnecessary Scenes – an interesting post from K M Weiland on how to spot –and then CULL – scenes that don’t matter. I am guilty of each and every one of these…
The 10 Keys To Writing Killer Fight Scenes Bill Ferris at Writer Unboxed with some ideas on getting action and immediacy into writing a fight scene. Although each tip is short, this is an interesting and helpful read. He covers everything from research to emotion.
How to Introduce Your Hero – Speculative Version Jeff Gerke at Writers Digest on getting your hero on stage and getting his essential characteristics and personality set from page one.
Ten Tips For Choosing The Right Book Title From Anne Allen, a wide ranging post that also covers things like metadata and keywords.
(a) Chuck Wendig
In Which I Critique Your Story (That I Haven’t Read) A wonderful piece from Chuck covering some of the common writerly failings. In his own inimitable style, of course.
Why Endings (Particularly for TV Shows) Are So Goddamn Hard Not to mention for book series, as I know to my cost. I like Chuck’s analysis here of what makes a good ending, particularly that it shouldn’t be too neat. My crit group will be grinning at me about that, believe me.
What Lessons From What Stories Chuck on how the author is a magician and the magic tricks, if they don’t work out, can lead to disappointed readers.
None Of Us Know What The Fuck We’re Doing – on how writing isn’t about certainty, but about exploration and just winging it. THE FIVE CONSTANTS: 1. Write A Lot (And To Completion) / 2. Read A Lot (And Read Critically When You Do)… etc
We Are Not Things: Mad Max vs Game Of Thrones – a thoughtful piece on how sexual assault in fiction is handled.
How “Mad Max: Fury Road” Turns Your Writing Advice Into Road Kill – another thoughtful piece on what works in the film and how that stacks against standard writing advice and tips.
(b) Everyone else
30 Ultimately Successful Social Media Tools for Writers – the Writers Write team list 30 online resources – few of which I’d call ‘social’ media, btw – to help you brainstorm and organise your work.
How to Create a Website as a Writer (Without it Costing You Both One Arm and One Leg) This has some very important tips from Stuart Horwitz at Writer Unboxed. Particularly on tagging for search words.
Marketing for Writers
170 Twitter Hashtags for Writers & Authors – Author Kate Larking lists them all
Please Shut Up – why self-promotion as an author doesn’t work – Delilah S Dawson’s thought provoking blog post that should make you think hard about how you use social media. And…
Wait, keep talking: author self-promo that actually works – Dawson’s follow up post with again, some more interesting thoughts on what might help sell you books. Be genuine!
Author Swag and How To Swing It – Sierra Godfrey at Writers In The Storm. An interesting piece on what sort of swag works. Most interesting thing to me – search Pinterest for “author swag” and see the good ideas.
12 Marketing Tips From 12 Industry Experts Some of this falls into the eye-rolling bleeding obvious category, but you might find it useful.
Why Authors Should Never Respond to Negative Reviews of their own books Well duh. Of course not. But this is an entertaining piece from Craig Stone. Also his blog title is complete awesomesauce: “Thought Scratchings – the bit your brain can’t itch, served in a packet of alternative pig shit.” Awesome!
What Customers Hate About Your Brand In Social Media – good infographic from Writers Write with, you know, actual research findings. Am awed.
45 Must-Visit Sci Fi Websites for Writers – great resource list for those of us who are writing in the genre.