MBM: Intuitive Grammar – The Comma Dilemma by Julie L Casey

 

Today is the last day of MARCH BOOK MADNESS! (Full explanation and schedule here.) I can’t believe it’s the end of the month already. I hope you’ve learned as much as I have from this talented group of authors. (Huge thank you to all of them for sharing their knowledge with us!!!!!) If you’ve missed any posts, make sure to catch up (list below).

Our last author is my friend, Julie L. Casey, author of the Teenage Survivalist series. Because Julie writes dystopian, end-of-civilization stuff like I do, she and I get along great. :) In fact, if you’re interested, she posts lots of basic survival tips on Pinterest and her other social sites. Make sure to check out her books and her blog (below her bio). Not only is she talented and knowledgeable, she’s also super sweet and nice. Today she’s talking about my arch nemesis: the comma.

Here she is:

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MBM: 10 Things Your Freelance Editor Wishes You Knew by Sarah Belliston

Welcome to the fifth day of MARCH BOOK MADNESS! (Full explanation and schedule here.)

Today my sister-in-law, writing partner, and friend Sarah Belliston is here to help us with our editing, specifically working with a freelance editor, which she is. Sarah is incredibly smart and graduated from BYU with a degree in English when she was fourteen years old or something (okay, she was a little older, but not a lot). She’s been a huge supporter of my writing over the years, and I love her to pieces. She edits novels, picture books, doctoral theses, queries, and lots of other academic papers. She’s great.  So are you ready for some tips when working with a freelance editor?

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MBM: How to Self-Edit Your Work by J.J. Lyon

Welcome to the second day of MARCH BOOK MADNESS! (Full explanation and schedule here.)

  • Life by Rebecca BellistonSide Note: One of our guest posters, Ranee S. Clark, is hosting March Cover Madness this month. My cover for LIFE (Citizens of Logan Pond bk 1) is up. Make sure to check in each day for the Cover Madness brackets

Today our first guest author is my friend J.J. Lyon (JoLynne). JoLynne has been around since the very beginning of March Book Madness, so this makes her fifth post with us. How cool is that? I’m glad she gets to start us off this month. (Check out her previous posts below her bio.) So here she is: Continue reading “MBM: How to Self-Edit Your Work by J.J. Lyon”

Writers Helping Writers:Mastering the Art of Cliffhangers

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MBM: 7 Editing Strategies by A.L. Sowards @alsowards

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What’s Missing From Your Romance? (fictional or real)

Have you read a book or watched a movie where the romance seemed forced or unwarranted?

It’s happened to me many times and happened again just last night as I watched a Nicholas Sparks’ movie. The guy had all the right qualities: good-looking, funny, sweet, smart, tall, and rich. The girl was beautiful, talented, witty, and intelligent.

And I couldn’t believe he’d fallen for her.

Seriously. I stared at the screen thinking, “Dude, you can do better than her!” Which was sad because the story had all the right elements.

Except one.

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Writing Tip: Keep Their Hands Busy

As I edit my novels, especially as I near the last few sweeps through, I take a close look at DIALOGUE TAGS (he said, she asked) and BEATS (pauses to break up dialogue: She sifted through her purse, hoping to calm her nerves before she said something she’d regret). 

I’ve noticed that in scenes where dialogue tags and beats flow better–and are easier to write–the character is usually doing something with their hands. Like the example above where the woman sifted through her purse.

It’s a simple tactic.

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Writing With Consequences

Here’s a quick writing tip I’ve been pondering the last week or two:

Writing With Consequences

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If something happens in your story, (your MC gets in a car accident, something is stolen from their purse, boyfriend breaks up with them, etc) your story will feel more authentic if there are clear consequences.

These consequences can (and should) be beyond the immediate, obvious ones.

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