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Is It Important for Writers to Also Be Readers?

By Marcy Kennedy (@MarcyKennedy) As an editor and writing instructor, I have the privilege of talking to a lot of writers, at a lot of different career stages. So it’s not unusual for patterns to crop up—ideas, trends, challenges, and myths. Today I want to debunk one of the myths I’ve heard frequently of late.(…)

The Power of Contrast in Description

By Marcy Kennedy (@MarcyKennedy) Readers need description to help them imagine the story world and to keep them grounded in the story, but often it’s considered the slow, boring part. It doesn’t have to be. Done right, description keeps the pace moving and brings out our point-of-view character’s emotions, backstory, and conflicts. It can also(…)

Tools to Help Bring Your Setting to Life

A tool that I regularly recommend is The Emotion Thesaurus by Angela Ackerman and Rebecca Puglisi. The Emotion Thesaurus helps writers with building character emotions and showing rather than telling. So I’m very excited that these two ladies have come out with a pair of books that will now help writers with describing their setting.(…)

Description in Fiction Shouldn’t Be Boring

By Marcy Kennedy (@MarcyKennedy) Description is often the unloved step-child of the writing craft. It’s undervalued and almost feared because writers tend to believe that things like dialogue and action are inherently better. We start to believe this because we associate dialogue and action with being active and interesting and we associate description with being(…)

Holographic Technology and Virtual Reality on the Horizon

By Marcy Kennedy (@MarcyKennedy) It’s no secret that I’m a huge Star Trek fan, and one of the technologies my husband and I desperately want to see become a reality is the holodeck. While it might not be exactly a holodeck, Microsoft’s hololens technology moves us one step closer. These are virtual reality glasses that(…)

Creating Promotional Material That Works: Swag

By Marcy Kennedy (@MarcyKennedy) Over the last two months during my guest posts at Fiction University, we’ve looked at writing a tag line for our books and writing our book description that goes up on retailers and on the back of our book. This month we’re going to talk swag. Swag is physical items related(…)

5 Times Katniss Nailed Deep Point of View

By Marcy Kennedy (@MarcyKennedy) I’m guest posting today for Christine Frazier of the Better Novel Project. I hope you’ll join me because I’m talking about one of my favorite subjects–deep POV–and how we can learn about it from Katniss and The Hunger Games. Join me to find out 5 Times Katniss Nailed Deep Point of(…)

Sadness Is Valuable Too

By Marcy Kennedy (@MarcyKennedy) A few months back, my husband asked me “Do you always have to be so cheerful?” “Would you rather I were grumpy?” I replied. He paused for a second, then nodded. “Sometimes.” That started me thinking. Because sometimes I feel grumpy inside. I feel sad and angry, scared and worthless. I(…)

Dissecting Books: Reading as a Writer Part 2

By Marcy Kennedy (@MarcyKennedy) Welcome back to my mini-series on how to dissect books to understand how and why they work. In other words, how to “read as a writer.” I started this series because the advice “writers should read” isn’t explained often enough. Writers can spend hours and hours reading without learning anything about(…)

Creating Promotional Copy That Works: Book Descriptions

By Marcy Kennedy (@MarcyKennedy) Last month I started a new series on creating promotional materials for our books with a look at tag lines. A tag line is a teaser or a catch phrase meant to capture the emotional tone of the book, hint at the genre, and hook the reader. They don’t tell the(…)