Tag Archives: books

Tension and Conflict. What’s the Difference?

KRISTINA STANLEY

Tension and conflict will keep your reader engaged in every scene. Knowing the difference and when to use each will drive your story forward.

Tension

Tension is the threat of something bad happening. This creates suspense.

Tension can be subtle or in-your-face.

Subtle Tension: Imagine one character is hiding a secret that could destroy his life and another character is about to accidentally spill the secret. The reader will feel the tension if you’ve set up the scene so that the reader knows the second character can’t keep a secret.

In-your-face Tension: A woman is thrown off a boat at sea. The tension comes if the reader cares about the character and wants her to survive. Or the tension could be she’s an evil woman who is about to destroy the world, and the reader doesn’t want her to survive.


Conflict

Conflict is the fight that is actually happening. A…

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Creating Tension in Fiction and Memoir

A Writer's Path

by Michael Mohr

One of the toughest things to do in fiction or creative nonfiction writing, in my professional opinion, is to create strong, believable tension. Without tension—between the protagonist and a villain, the protagonist and him/herself, the protagonist and the environment, etc—you really don’t have much of a story. And it’s unlikely readers will want to follow you far through the jungle of your narrative.

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How To Plan Your Novel Using The Three-Act Structure

Writer's Blog

Three-act-structure_1

Writing a novel is hard, especially if you’ve never done it before. You’ve spent hours researching, building your world and becoming an expert on your characters. Now you’re ready for the next step: planning (also known as plotting).

While some people like to write organically (letting the story take you in whatever direction feels right), having a detailed outline can help make the novel-writing process a lot less daunting and overwhelming. But how exactly do you plan a novel?

Essentially, there is no right or wrong way to outline your novel. Each story is different and needs to be told in a different way.

However, if you need a bit more guidance on how to plot out the next bestseller you know you have inside you, the three-act structure might be for you.

Defining The Three-Act Structure

The three-act structure is a popular screenwriting technique that revolves around constantly creating set-ups, conflicts and resolutions. With this structure…

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Brown Girl Dreaming by Jacqueline Woodson

Feminism, Yoga, and Other Balancing Acts

I absolutely loved this memoir written in poetry when I had first read it and wanted to remind everyone of it for this year’s National Poetry Month! I don’t know what you’re reading this April but I highly recommend brown girl dreaming if you haven’t read it yet!

Review:Brown Girl Dreaming - Jacqueline WoodsonI’ve read a lot of memoirs, but none that were done as a series of poems before. It really is a beautiful way to convey your story. My favorite was the first one, about the day she was born.

Woodson brings her birth together with the state of black in America and it’s done masterfully.

I’m not sure how many people can do memoir in this fashion, but this does a better job of explanation some things about the Civil Rights era than almost everything I had to memorize in school. It gives the feeling in the South of black child…

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How Long Should A Book Be? Word Count Guidelines by Genre.

First Edition Design Publishing - a hybrid publisher

A constant complaint I hear from agents, editors, writing teachers, and reviewers is that they see too many manuscripts with inappropriate word counts.

If you’re getting a lot of form rejections or simply silence from agents, reviewers and editors, this may be why.

Word count guidelines have been trending down in the last decade. Most editors won’t look at a debut manuscript longer than 100K words—a little longer if it’s fantasy or a non-romance historical. They were not so rigid ten years ago.

Now publishers—and many readers—won’t take a chance on any long book by an unproven author.

While readers will happily plunk down the big bux for an 819-page book by George R. R. Martin, they’ll turn up their noses at a book that long—even if it only costs 99c—if it’s written by Who R. R. You.

I know the “accepted wisdom” in the indie world is that…

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DADDY: Reflections of Father-Daughter Relationships (Cover Reveal)

K E Garland

I write to inspire. I write to motivate people to re-think social issues. I write to raise women’s voices because, although women make up nearly half of the world’s population, many times our experiences are not heard, and subsequently, devalued.

To that end, I’ve compiled another anthology. This time, I’ve invited 13 women to write memoirs centered on their father-daughter relationships. Over the next couple of months, I’ll introduce you to ten of the writers. Each Friday, they’ll explain why they wrote and what they hope to accomplish by participating in such a project.

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SYNOPSIS

A father’s presence is important in a daughter’s life. He is the first man a little girl sees and knows. He demonstrates how men relate to women.

But what happens when the father-daughter relationship is dysfunctional? Daddy answers that question.

Included are fourteen memoirs that describe the impact a failed father-daughter relationship can have…

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Real Writers Persist. Always.

A Writer's Path

by Lauren Sapala

When writers first start out writing they tend to concentrate on all the wrong things. The big question always seems to be: Do I have talent? This is followed closely by: How do I get an agent? When I was a new writer I also agonized quite a bit over these things. It’s very normal. Whenever a person begins to truly take risks and follow their passion, the first challenges to surface are always questions of self worth and approval from others.

And make no mistake, that IS what the talent and agent questions are really all about: self worth and approval. Every human being goes through it in one form or another. For writers, anxiety and obsession about how much talent they have and getting an agent is just how it typically manifests.

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Not Exactly Love: A Memoir by Betty Hafner

Best Reads Reviews

Alt=Not Exactly Love: A Memoir by Betty Hafner

It was 1969, and all the rules were changing, when Betty, a woefully single French teacher on Long Island, met the handsome but edgy new teacher at her school, a hippie just back from Woodstock. His vitality opened up a new world to her—but when they married, his rages turned against her, and often ended with physical violence. Like millions of women who discover they’ve married an abusive man, Betty was forced to make daily decisions—to suppress her feelings or risk confrontation, to keep it secret or report, and ultimately, to live with it or leave.

Part memoir, part warm-hearted look at the ’70s, and part therapeutic journey, Not Exactly Love: A Memoir is an intense and inspirational story of a woman who grew from her experience

Review:

It’s 1969, on Long Island, NY, unmarried and single French teacher, Betty, meets a…

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When It’s Time To Stop Auditioning, Give Yourself the Job: Self/Hybrid Publish

| Rock+Paper+Music |

Let me start with a disclaimer: this is not a screed against traditional publishing. Yes, those are trendy and you’ll find lots of them out there, but this is not one. Life has taught me that when something sustains as long as traditional publishing has, it’s because it remains, however confounded and confused, a vital player in the scheme of things. I’d say that’s the case with the Big 5.

This is, instead, a few of my cobbled thoughts on the topic of why one might choose otherwise; why one might self-publish, or hybrid publish, or publish outside the realm of that iconic process of securing an agent who’ll, hopefully, wrangle a publishing deal, that will, hopefully, vaunt you into the stratosphere of big awards and New York Times bestseller lists. As much as one might dream of that starry-eyed path to literary greatness, there are myriad reasons why one might choose…

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20 Questions To Ask When Writing A Book Review

By Megan Alms, a professional writing student at Taylor University You’ve just read a book, and you want to tell the world what you thought of it. Your mind is swirling with ideas and emotions. But as soon as you sit down to write your review, you forget everything you’ve just read. So, what needs […]

via 20 Questions to Ask When Writing a Book Review — PWR Lounge