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Posts Tagged ‘writing tools’

This is a pretty particular post, but it’s something that would have helped me, so here you go.

There are a lot of books and other resources out there for writers. A while back I mentioned a few of the ones I’ve found helpful, including this one:

Techniques of the Selling Writer by Dwight V. Swain

At one point I read an Ilona Andrews* post mentioning they used the book when starting out, and decided to check it out. There’s a lot of useful material here. My edition looks like this:

Swain’s approach is very detailed, and while not the last word, obviously, he does have a Lot to say about the nitty gritty craft of writing. What, how, and why, all those questions everyone ahead of you seems to know but often don’t explain. And have I mentioned that this book is Very Detailed with Teeny Tiny Type? Even if you have the book, getting a handle on the discussion’s arc and the location of useful details was something I found time-consuming. So I wrote up an outline, including descriptions and page references for all the bits I wish the table of contents had included. Click the image below to view the full PDF.

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Will this outline help you? If you have the book and are interested, yes. If you don’t have the book but wonder if you might be interested, this file will at least give you a sense of what’s included.

If you want to know more about techniques like Motivation-Reaction Units, I also suggest this summary post by K.M. Weiland:

Motivation-Reaction Units: Cracking the Code of Good Writing

And since we’re here, I’ll also mention Jim Butcher’s LiveJournal series on writing. He discusses outlines, characters, scenes and sequels that look a lot like Swain’s approach, and more:

‎jimbutcher.livejournal.com

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Even if you don’t need this now, tuck it away in your stash of tools for writing. You never know when it might come in handy!

Photo by u015eahin Sezer Dinu00e7er on Pexels.com

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* Love their work. Check it out if you’re into fantasy starring interesting magic, well-developed characters, smart, capable, kick-ass ladies, and more!

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You may remember a recent post about Kintsugi, or the art of repairing broken things. In that same vein, I came across this story from Nature’s Futures section and thought I’d share:

Kintsugi for a broken heart

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Nature is a great venue for writers who put interesting, concise twists on the potential futures of science. It has high standards but pays well, responds in weeks rather than months or years, and publishes often. For more details and a link to the Guidelines, I recommend my favorite (free!) authorial tracking site, The Grinder.

Enjoy!

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Photo by Jen Theodore on Unsplash

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Insane deadline looming so I wasn’t planning on posting anything today but! I just had to mention that my favorite writing and submissions manager The Grinder has added yet another really useful feature: the Market Response List. It tracks all responses from markets where you have current submissions, and is visible as a tab on the main page, next to Recent Activity and Recently Added Markets. So you won’t waste time clicking through to each market individually, repeatedly, far too often!

Yeah, it’s a version of something Duotrope already has. Only, you know, free. Thanks for all your hard work, The Grinder!*

* Not associated with the aforementioned site, just think they are terrific.

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