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Why Identifying Your Reading Audience Age Is Crucial

You’re writing an intense novel about vampires. You’re exploring deep themes of family loyalty and courage. You believe adult readers will love this high-action somewhat violent novel.

But your protagonist is an eight-year-old boy who is struggling to deal with his new life in this not-so-brave new world.

This is a big problem.

And it’s similar to what I see week after week as I critique novels by aspiring writers.

I get that you have a killer idea and you’ve worked hard to come up with a great, compelling plot with lots of action and twists and complications. But before you began, did you even consider who your target audience might be? Continue Reading…

5 Reasons to Consider Using an Omniscient Narrator

Today’s guest post is by Brenda Berg.

Take any writing class, and talk to any editor, and he’ll say “never write with an omniscient narrator.” I’ve never heard a good reason for that, though, and that’s why I decided to get a writing consultation with Paper Fellows. We worked on the issue, and here’s what I learned.

What is an omniscient narrator?

An omniscient narrator is one that is literally all-knowing. He (or she) knows everything that is happening in your story at any time, and that includes any information that your characters may not be aware of. He also has a good understanding of the history of your story’s world.

Why are writers told not to use the omniscient narrator? Because editors know just how easy it is to make mistakes with it. After all, you’re not all-knowing yourself, so how can your narrator be? It’s actually easier than you think if you take care when you’re writing and use tools such as Cite It In to get the facts correct. Here’s why an all-knowing narrator is so useful and how you can use one.

  1. Readers get to know multiple characters

A story is often much bigger than just the one character. Multiple characters will be making an impact on the story, making changes that affect others who may not even know them. This can be seen in the Game of Thrones books (though these books are not written with omniscient POV; they’re third-person shifting POV), in which chapters jump between different characters and show what they’re all doing. Continue Reading…

Crafting Opening Novel Scenes That Pack a Punch

Today’s guest post is by Jennifer Locke.

Novel beginnings are tough.

The writer faced with a blank document must ask herself question upon question.

  • How do I include relevant information regarding time and place without front-loading a lot of backstory?
  • Which key details will set the scene in the reader’s mind?
  • How can I jump right into the action, without leaving my readers completely lost, unmoored from the specifics of story?

We’ve heard all the no-nos. Continue Reading…

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