“Show, Don’t Tell” | Still Sound Advice, or Lame Idea?

by Marylee MacDonald, May 27, 2017 in For Beginning Writers, For Writers Doing Revisions

“Show, don’t tell.” What does it mean, and should writers pay attention to this time-worn advice? In this post I’m going to look at three writers who use narrative exposition–old-fashioned storytelling–and see what they’re doing on the “show, don’t tell” front. Let’s start with a bit of background. Wikipedia cites a passage in a Chekhov letter […]

Story Starters Keep Your Story Ideas from Going Stale

by Marylee MacDonald, May 20, 2017 in For Beginning Writers

Story-starters are the key to a writer’s long-term success, but what are story starters and how can you turn them into actual stories? Essentially, story starters are the notebooks writers keep about the things they observe in the world. These journals don’t gaze at the writer’s navel. They’re other-centered, outward looking, and curious about all […]

Character-Driven Fiction Takes Readers Back to 1968 | Sharon Solwitz’s New Novel

by Marylee MacDonald, May 13, 2017 in Characters, For Writers Who Need Readers

ONCE, IN LOURDES author Sharon Solwitz has one previous novel, Bloody Mary, and a collection of short stories, Blood and Milk, which won the Carl Sandburg Literary Award from Friends of the Chicago Public Library and the prize for adult fiction from the Society of Midland Authors, and was a finalist for the National Jewish […]

How Much Should You Be Spending on Book Awards?

by Marylee MacDonald, May 6, 2017 in For Writers Ready to Publish

Book awards can help your book gain traction. When you’re attending a book fair, having a shiny sticker on the cover draws attention. And when you’re setting up your author’s pages, featuring the “bling” can’t hurt. Several of this blog’s subscribers stand on the brink of publishing first or second books. Every one of these […]