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Incite and Excite

March 30th, 2018

Plot, suspense and conflict are probably the terms which are most familiar to those who write fiction, and to some readers. Less familiar but in many ways just as important as these elements of story is what is termed the inciting incident.

It’s the inciting incident which gets the story going and is crucial to what happens in the whole tale. It is something which will be of interest and will hook the reader so that he or she wants to read on, find out what happens, and how things will end.

The idea of the inciting incident is most easily illustrated by reference to two of the most popular genres of fiction: crime and romance. In nine out of ten crime novels the inciting incident will be the committing of a crime or finding that a crime has been committed and then the engaging of someone (often a detective) to solve the crime. Read the rest of this entry »




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Freelance Deadlines

February 2nd, 2018

I find that freelance writing is a sort of balancing act between the stuff you have to do and the stuff you want to do. My main source of income as a writer is ghostwriting – I write about a book a month, so the deadlines can be pretty tight. I also write and present a weekly web-series called Dark Corners, which doesn’t pay as well but is always building and is a useful shop window, but the deadlines for that are even tighter. These are the things I have to do on a week by week basis if I want to make rent etc.

Then there is stuff with ‘created deadline’. Last year I wrote a book called The Mummy’s Quest which I published via Amazon. In the past I’ve always gone the route of sending books to agents and have absolutely nothing to show for it so I thought I’d try this and it is selling, not excessively but steadily. I’m now working on the follow-up, which I want to come out in April. I’ve tentatively announced it and am blogging on the writing process to try to build anticipation for its arrival. The thing is, we’re almost three weeks into the New Year and I have written about four thousand words, because if I don’t hit that deadline nothing bad happens – I’ll just publish in May instead. Or June. You can give yourself a deadline, but it will never have the force of one imposed on you by someone else, and so you sideline the work in favour of more urgent stuff. Read the rest of this entry »




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Mind Mapping

October 13th, 2017

First, thanks to Lucy for last week’s blog. When you’ve spent so much time working on a book and getting your ‘baby’ ready to publish, you can sometimes forget that unless you market it properly, it won’t get the audience it deserves and that’s the last thing you need! So, read Lucy’s tips and follow the links she provides as they really do give you some useful information.

This week I’m going to concentrate on some advice that one of our Writers Bureau students, Geeta Vittal Rao, wanted to share with you. In addition to working on our course she is also studying with the Self-Publishing School and one of the aids to writing that they suggest is Mind Mapping. This is how she describes it: Read the rest of this entry »




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The Ultimate Toolkit of a Freelance Writer

October 14th, 2016

Sophia-blog1Being a freelance writer comes with many perks. Flexible hours, the ability to choose who you work with, and even your own paycheck. However, despite these advantages, freelance writing can be more challenging than it might appear. Here are some online tools that can make your job a lot easier.

  1. Todoist

Despite flexibility, you still need to keep track of all your errands and obligations, not to mention important deadlines. Todoist is a powerful task manager that can save you both time and effort.

  1. Writer’s Residence

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About The Author: Diana Nadin

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