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Writing for Life

Mondays

The Editorial Burden That Weighs on the Author

boy carrying world

In 1957, an editor at Lippincott publishing house received a manuscript on her desk from an unknown author who had written what was mostly a string of short stories. Her task? To work with the author to help her get the manuscript in shape so that it would be marketable and read well.

This was the job of in-house editors back then. Often manuscripts like these would be given to them to whip into shape, and Tay Hohoff was given this enormous task of working with this unknown author—an undertaking that took two and a half years—until finally, the manuscript was ready for publication. Continue Reading…

12 Key Pillars of Novel Construction

Wednesdays

Secondary Characters with Their Own Needs

curtain call

We’re now getting into another one of my favorite topics—secondary characters. This pillar in your novel is so important, it could almost be a corner support pillar. In this course exploring the 12 key pillars of novel construction, we’ve spent time looking at your main character—your protagonist—and we’ve dabbled a little into the role secondary characters play in your story. But there is so much more.

Needless to say, I could write an entire book on secondary characters. And I’ve written some very deep, explorative blog posts about them (which I highly encourage you to read here, here, and here). Continue Reading…

Say What?

Fridays

Do You Speak to Each Other or One Another?

saywhat2

Sometimes people are confused about when to use each other and one another. Well, there’s a good reason for the confusion. Even the people who make up the rules—the grammarians—don’t agree on this one.

So let’s start with the things they do agree on:

Each other and one another are pronouns (used in place of nouns). They are reciprocal pronouns. That means that both individuals experience the same thing; it’s a mutual relationship.

  • Bill and Sue love each other.
  • Unfortunately, their parents couldn’t stand each other.

Both the affection and the dislike go both ways. Use each other when talking about two people. Continue Reading…

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