I wrote an article here a couple of years ago suggesting ways to tidy up shaggy writing. It’s been a while, and perhaps it’s time for another trim.
Everyone has a list of words and phrases you should “never use.” Many of these are not specific taboos. They are just loose writing that could be tightened if you recognize the symptoms and want to try harder.
Here are a few words and phrases you might consider adding to your private list. Note that I have found all of these at one time or another in a “real” book, and often while I’m polishing my own work. Continue reading “Writing Tip: Another Set of Words to Trim”
by Dale E. Lehman
Are you satisfied with your writing? If so, something’s wrong. After all, who writes to perfection? If our writing is to grow, we must constantly hone our craft. In what follows, I’ll share four secrets essential to improvement; key practices I’ve learned through decades of experience.
Let’s begin with that tired cliché about writing being a solitary business. If you’re like me, you spent years writing privately and sharing with nobody. You liked what you wrote. Sometimes you amazed yourself with a character or a turn of phrase or even an entire story. Sure. It’s easy to amaze ourselves. Amazing others? Not so much. Continue reading “The Top 4 Ways to Hone Your Writing”
Lately I’ve had quite a few editing jobs, working them in between my own writing and promotion of my latest book. I enjoy editing. I’ve always had a critical eye and an analytic brain, so very often anomalies in the writing will jump off the page at me. The caveat, of course, is that this art we practice is a highly subjective one, so while there are guidelines and style manuals to set general rules, those rules can and are broken regularly if the story requires it.
But I’ve noticed an interesting side benefit from my editing work. It points up for me, in spades, the crimes I may or may not have committed. Continue reading “How Editing for Others Helps My Writing”
Like a number of my author friends, I took a good long inventory of my publications when Kindle Unlimited went live. There are, and probably will be, so many variables to the success of this program, and I’m leaving those for the other minions to write about. In fact, Lynne Cantwell wrote a really good article about KU recently. But I needed to make some calls about my own participation. Did I want to move any stories back into KDP Select? Move any out? Write a couple new ones for the program? A tough call, because recently I’d spent some time and energy prepping three titles for Smashwords and their online distributors. Continue reading “Keep Writing, Keep Improving”