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Writing for Life


3 Ways Great Nonfiction Can Be the Fiction Writer’s Greatest Resource

man reading in field

Today’s guest post is from author Daryl Rothman:

There’s nothing like good fiction. Never am I more inspired to write something good than immediately after reading something good. But a funny thing has happened along the way.

My best writing, the greatest surges of fiction/writing inspiration, occurred after reading great nonfiction. Not only was it inspiring me, it was making me write better. But why? And how can it help your writing too? Continue Reading…

12 Key Pillars of Novel Construction


A Look at Inner and Outer Conflict in Your Novel

hands on mirror

We’re knee-deep in conflict (in our look at the four crucial corner pillars of novel construction). Let’s take some time to talk about the two faces of conflict: inner and outer. Maybe I don’t need to go over outer conflict because it’s obvious, right? Anything outside your character that hinders him or opposes him is external conflict. And usually this is easier to construct that internal conflict. But there are some things to keep in mind about external conflict.

I mentioned in an earlier post that you should have a central element of conflict in your story, but let me explain this a little further. Continue Reading…

Say What?


Are You Between or Among?


What’s a little joke between friends? Assuming there are just two of you, between is correct. But if you’re talking about a broader circle of friends, you’ll want to use among.

Often people think between is used only when referring to two persons, objects, or groups. It’s true that when the choice is between two distinct options, between is the right choice.

  • Edith couldn’t decide between the red or the black dress.
  • Jeremy’s college choice was between Harvard and Yale.

But between is also correct when there are more than two options. CMOS explains it this way: Between is “perfectly appropriate for more than two objects if multiple one-to-one relationships are understood from the context.” Continue Reading…

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