Recently, I’ve been invited to chat with Sacha Black from the Rebel Author Podcast.
We talked about how to write great beginnings for your story, and we covered important points such as the most common mistakes authors make with beginnings; what you need to establish in the first act and the first chapter;
how to handle prologues, flashbacks, and flash-forwards; how to hook readers; and how to know when you have the right beginning.
Today, I’m sharing a guest post by Rose Atkinson-Carter who offers helpful tips for rewriting and revising your novel.
Rewriting can be a stressful stage of the writing process. Unlike writing your first draft, where you know you can put off all thoughts of editing or quality control for later, or the editing stage, where you’ve got a full first draft in front of you that just needs some serious polishing, rewriting exists somewhere in the middle. It’s a careful balancing act between improving the way you had told the story in your first draft and starting from scratch (which you want to avoid) in the search for better options.
Rewriting involves keeping track of several moving parts, so to help you along this process, I’ve gathered 5 things writers often lose track of as a reminder for your next rewrite.
The blurb of your book is arguably one of the most important pieces of writing you’ll do for your book. If you’ve done a great job, the short description that goes on the back cover and the sales page will capture readers’ attention and convince them your book is exactly what they want to read right now.
If done wrong, the blurb will make readers decide not to take a chance on your book and read something else instead.
There are many mistakes to avoid when writing your book blurb, e.g., writing an overly long summary of the entire book, but I won’t dive into that in this blog post.
Instead, I’ll focus on one little thing that will make me as a reader give a book a hard pass: punctuation mistakes in the blurb.
In a previous blog post on how to create interesting characters, I emphasized how important is to give your characters not just strengths, but also weaknesses. Perfect characters are boring!
But you shouldn’t give your characters just any flaws. The flaws your characters have need to be a good fit for the character.
If there’s one thing that most authors hate with a passion, it’s marketing their books. Writers are creatives, not born salespeople. In addition, many authors are introverts who don’t like putting themselves out there, and most of them also juggle a day job, writing, and family obligations, so finding time …
When I’m editing, I often come across manuscripts in which writers used an ellipsis when they should use a dash or the other way around. Sometimes, I also see hyphens used instead of dashes. So here are some simple rules of thumb for when and how to use dashes, ellipses, …