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Genre in Fiction — Janice Dick

Genre in Fiction — Janice Dick

Before we begin talking about plot outlines, character development and setting, let’s discuss a little concept called genre. The word is pronounced john-ra or zhon-ra, and it simply means kind or variety. In our case, it refers to the kinds of stories we read and write.

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The Basic Elements of Fiction — Janice Dick

The Basic Elements of Fiction — Janice Dick

When I present a talk on novel writing, I often ask the audience for their input on the basic elements of fiction, and they come up with several immediately: plot, setting and character. Let’s begin with these. Plot, according to James Scott Bell in his excellent how-to book Plot & Structure, is: “1) a small piece of ground, generally used

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Adding Texture to your Writing — Sandi Somers

Adding Texture to your Writing — Sandi Somers

It has been said you write your first draft for yourself, and the second for your readers. This was vividly brought home to me as I was writing about Calgary’s recent flood for an online course. My first essay focused on my experiences during the critical first day as I visited sites, watched raging floodwaters, talked to people at an

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Puzzling Punctuation — Carolyn Wilker

Puzzling Punctuation — Carolyn Wilker

Punctuation trips up many writers, from beginner to the more experienced, so for this post, I’ll address six of the commonly used punctuation marks:  hyphen, en dash, em dash, colon, semicolon, and ellipsis. Knowing correct usage is important for anyone who writes.

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Publicity, Platform and Social Media — Ruth L. Snyder

Publicity, Platform and Social Media — Ruth L. Snyder

Recently I read two opposing opinions on publicity, platform, and social media: one by Sandra Beckwith and the other by Ewan Morrison. Sandra says, “We’ll talk about how to create and use the single most effective publicity tool for both fiction and nonfiction.” Ewan Morrison counters with, “Do you want to spend 80% of your time creating unpaid market propaganda

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Me? A Writer? — Janice Dick

Me? A Writer? — Janice Dick

How do I become a writer? What are the qualifications? The short answer is: you become a writer by writing. Doesn’t matter what you write or whether or not you’re published. If you write, you are a writer. That’s the one non-negotiable qualification. The long answer goes beyond this simple explanation.

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Marketing, Publicity and Agents — Brenda J. Wood

Marketing, Publicity and Agents — Brenda J. Wood

Didn’t we all suspect this? Best Seller Lists are a scam. Artificially bumped-up sales have nothing to do with actual books. Apparently some authors pay huge money to make the lists. Where does that leave us who have no money but wouldn’t try this trick even if we had any? It leaves us in the best place ever, full of

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Active or Passive Voice? — Carolyn Wilker

Active or Passive Voice? — Carolyn Wilker

As an editor I pay attention to the use of verbs in my clients’ or students’ writing and suggest when the active form would be more effective, and affirm when the passive is appropriate. Active and passive voices are different than verb tense which tells the reader if the action happens in the present, past or future.

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7 Steps to Publishing an e-Book on Kindle — Ruth L. Snyder

7 Steps to Publishing an e-Book on Kindle — Ruth L. Snyder

Val Waldeck presented a course called How to Prepare and Publish Your Books for Amazon’s Kindle as part of the recent e-Book Publishing Boot Camp I attended. She started her presentation by informing us that Amazon is selling “twice as many Kindle books now, as they’re selling hard covers…

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4 Ways to create e-books — Ruth L. Snyder

4 Ways to create e-books — Ruth L. Snyder

Recently I had the opportunity to participate in the eBook Publishing Boot Camp organized by D’Vorah Lansky. Many presentations were made over the course of two weeks. In this post I will be sharing what I learned from Jim Edwards in his session, Four Ways to Write Your Non-Fiction Book or eBook to Publish & Sell on Amazon Kindle in

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