Build a Better Outline

Build a Better Outline

If you plot a novel beforehand, it leaves your creative mind free to focus on constructing scenes and sentences. In this article, New York Times best-selling author David Farland teaches his methods for plotting engaging books.

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Writing App Reviews… Scrivener

Writing App Reviews… Scrivener

As a writer, I’d heard about Scrivener from many of my peers, but for whatever reason (pure obstinance, probably), I stuck with my old word processing program. It wasn’t until about a year ago that I finally acquiesced and purchased Scrivener. I haven’t looked back! If you’ve ever set up a binder to try to organize the various plans and ideas for your novel—or even just articles—you probably had sections to hold your character sketches, setting ideas, plot outline, and research. You may have had separate sections to contain each of your scenes and chapters. You might even have had a section that contained nothing but pictures clipped from magazines that sparked your imagination.

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Punch Up Your Narrative Arc and Character Development

Punch Up Your Narrative Arc and Character Development

You’ve survived yet another NaNoWriMo. Congratulations! You’ve just written a book in 30 days. Now what? Kathy Edens tackles this question.

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The Best Sci-Fi Books of All Time

The Best Sci-Fi Books of All Time

We culled some of the biggest reader polls from Goodreads and National Public Radio’s Books. The following top 25 best Science Fiction books ever published were voted on by thousands of devoted science fiction readers.

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A Complete Guide to Writing Incredible Novel Openings

A Complete Guide to Writing Incredible Novel Openings

What are the most important things to include in your opening chapter? Establish your setting. Introduce elements of your protagonists conflict. Raise important story questions. Make your reader care about your character. Read on to find out more!

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How to Foreshadow like Alfred Hitchcock

How to Foreshadow like Alfred Hitchcock

Foreshadowing allows you to plant clues, hint at what’s to come, build the tension, or even place a red herring in your reader’s path. You can use foreshadowing in a variety of ways. The resulting action can be immediate or delayed. You can use dialogue or narrative to set the scene, and you can foreshadow a symbolic event or an ethical dilemma. You can use direct or indirect foreshadowing, and it can even be true or false. Foreshadowing can feed the tension of a scene. Who doesn’t know the famous shower scene in the movie Psycho? Right before the character Marion Crane pulls up to the Bates Motel, her windshield wipers are slashing through the rain, foreshadowing what awaits her in the shower scene.

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Why Narrative Satisfaction Matters: Lessons from Game of Thrones

Why Narrative Satisfaction Matters: Lessons from Game of Thrones

Millions of fans are not thrilled with the ending of 'Game of Thrones'. Hayley Milliman examines what lessons aspiring fiction writers can learn from the show's missteps.

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ProWritingAid and Fictionary, the editing bundle you do not want to miss.

ProWritingAid and Fictionary, the editing bundle you do not want to miss.

Fictionary works seamlessly with the ProWritingAid Chrome extension. Not only can you use both to improve your work at the same time, but there's a special offer on the Fictionary and ProWritingAid bundle: get both for just $99 until May 27th.

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Retconning: Why J.K. Rowling Is Making Me Furious

Retconning: Why J.K. Rowling Is Making Me Furious

Nothing makes a true fan angrier than retconning. Here's why.

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Agent Advice Part 2: Line-Editing and Copy-Editing

Agent Advice Part 2: Line-Editing and Copy-Editing

Literary agents are the gatekeepers of the publishing world. Their verdict on a five-page submission can make or break an author’s dreams. It’s critical to ensure your submission catches an agent’s eye and doesn’t immediately get passed upon.

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Crafting a Fictional Universe: Learning from Marvel Studios

Crafting a Fictional Universe: Learning from Marvel Studios

Want to create a fictional universe like Marvel's? You've come to the right place.

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Series Arc: The Art of Telling Stories Over Multiple Volumes

Series Arc: The Art of Telling Stories Over Multiple Volumes

What are some ways to develop a story arc throughout a series? We'll show you!

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Do You Know the Most Important Role of Your Supporting Characters?

Do You Know the Most Important Role of Your Supporting Characters?

Supporting characters are designed to move your story forward. Discover their relationship to story context and how that influences the way you write them.

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How to Use Trello to Storyboard Your Novel

How to Use Trello to Storyboard Your Novel

You may have noticed that we at ProWritingAid have a fondness for technology that makes writers better, stronger, more organized, and highly productive. If you like creating a storyboard for your novels, or if you want an innovative app to capture all of your to-do’s for your client work, let us introduce Trello. For those of us who use sticky notes, index cards, and other forms of reminders to help you organize everything you need for a writing project, Trello is the easiest, most intuitive way to organize your work.

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How to Craft an Engaging Arc for Your Story

How to Craft an Engaging Arc for Your Story

In this article, we delve a deeper into creating your story arc.

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