Category: The Art of Writing (Page 2 of 10)

How to Begin a Story: Writing Your Character’s Journey to Page One

begin a story

A great many writers – aspiring and established – face the dreaded question:

How and where do I begin my story? 

It turns out this is less of a question about timing and location, than it is a moment in your primary character’s life where the journey to answer a question begins.

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Our Writer’s Digest Novel Writing Conference Schedule

Woo-hoo! Starting tomorrow, we’ll be in sunny L.A. at the Writer’s Digest Novel Writing Conference. We’re excited to attend, and proud to be a sponsor – and few of you out there have asked what sessions we’ll be attending during the three day all-things-novel extravaganza.

Below is a handy dandy guide of the sessions where we’ll be, each covering unique facets of the novel-writer’s journey. Have any session summaries you’d like us to share – let us know @TheRightMargin 

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The Art of the Novel at Litquake 2016

Preparing for NaNoWriMo at Litquake

Like last year, Litquake, San Francisco’s 17-year-old literary festival, held an insightful panel on The Art of the Novel this past Saturday.

The panel provided an inspiring push to prepare for National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) next month. As I plan to write my first NaNoWriMo novel in less than two weeks, I attended the panel and found the following as key takeaways. NaNoWriMo’s own Grant Faulkner moderated Ramona Ausubel, Jan Ellison, Sarah Ladipo Manyika, Ellen Sussman, and Gina Frangello with a series of engaging questions to help the writers in attendance learn from the panelists. I found the following talking points inspiring or helpful in my journey towards NaNoWriMo. If you want to learn more, leave me a comment below or reach out to the individual panelists on Twitter or Facebook.

“The novel is the barometer of the health of our culture.”
— Grant Faulkner

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Build your Novel Synopsis Before you Write with Netflix and Wikipedia

plot synopsis

If you’re planning on participating in this year’s National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo), you need to have a good plan of attack before the waves of word count start crashing on your computer’s shore come November 1st.

Tackling your novel’s summary and plot synopsis up front during your planning phase helps direct your character’s journey, keeping you focused on building depth and creating scenes that move your story.  

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Conflict and Story: From Boring Life to Brilliant Fiction

conflict in a story

Making Scenes out of soy milk

Here’s what happens: I go into a Starbucks in Los Gatos, California, stressing hard about the wedding ceremony I have to write and officiate for my cousin in less than 24 hours. I’m hyped-up and anxious about getting it done, investing too much faith in the 16-ounce, whole-milk latte I’m ordering to jumpstart my brain and unleash the heartfelt verbiage she’s trusting me to produce.

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