guest post, writing tips

The Active Word Checklist

Hot on the heels of “The Weak Word Checklist”, another great post by K.M. Allan with an “Active Word” checklist. Another one to bookmark for reference when you’re re-writing those drafts.

K.M. Allan

“Keep your prose active.” It’s one of the most well-known pieces of writing advice and one of the most frustrating.

Sometimes when writing, especially when you’re first starting out, you have no idea what words are making your prose non-active. You’re just writing, using the words that sound right.

It’s not until you see the difference creating an active voice makes to your story that you understand why it’s a tried-and-true recommendation. Take the following sentences, for example…

Non-Active: Sarah’s fingers fumbled in her skirt pocket, trying to reach for her cell phone.
Active: Sarah’s fingers fumbled in her skirt pocket for her cell phone.

Non-Active: The fire at the entrance had reached one of the glass doors and was turning it black.
Active: The fire at the entrance reached one of the glass doors, turning it black.

Non-Active: When her gaze crossed the entrance, she couldsee someone standing in the middle…

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re-blog, writing

Getting Writer Friends – Wicks Writes

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I saw this post from Emily over on “Wicks Writes” and wanted to reblog it. I had previously posted about reasons to join a writer’s group and her post just reinforces that with some other great reasons to seek peer feedback on your work.

Check it out!

Hello Friends! I hope you are all having a lovely morning so far, Sundays mornings are meant for relaxation and (of course) writing. Sundays are best spent reading, writing and lounging while ignoring the ever present fact that work comes again tomorrow…forget I mentioned it! For now I will let you in on more of […]

via Get some writer friends! — Wicks Writes

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Writing Tip – Using Story Beats — Joanna’s Story

Today’s post comes from author and blogger B.L. Daniels. You can check out his blog here. He has great content and advice, so I encourage you to check his page out! You can also follow him on Twitter @aggrokragg Authors tend to fall into two categories. “Plotters” and “Pansters”. Plotters attempt to formulate and outline their entire story or novel […]

via Writing Tip – Using Story Beats — Joanna’s Story

creative writing, guest post

Writing Tip: Character Arguments

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Today’s post comes from author and blogger Joanna Wallace. She gives us a great tip on using arguments to explore character depth. You can find more advice and wonderful posts about the writing process on her blog,  Joanna’s Story.

You can also follow her on Instagram and Twitter @JoannasStory

First, I’d like to thank Ben for allowing me to guest post on his blog. I hope you find this topic useful, to help create conflict with your characters. This exercise also helps pen dialogue and can add more depth to your story.  How do you achieve this? Make your characters argue.

People fight about anything and everything. It could be love, a disagreement, different viewpoints, what to make for dinner, chores, a life or death scenario, the list goes on.

Whenever I hit a snag, I’ll image my characters arguing. What do they fight for? How do they speak and act? Are they a pushover or do they stand up for what they believe in? This has helped me add plot twists as well.

Even if you’re a writer who likes to outline, create a new page and make them bicker with someone. It may tell you more about the character than you know. You could even speak the dialogue aloud. If you do this in a coffee shop, you may get some strange looks, but that’s what writing is about. Creating emotion and making the reader feel it. They also need to believe it.

Does anyone else use this writing exercise? Let me know what you think.

Thanks again to Ben for letting me post!