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Why I Launched a Secret Pen Name

By Marcy Kennedy (@MarcyKennedy) So, umm…surprise. I have a pen name. She published two novels and one novella in 2016 with the third in her series already complete and ready to go in a few weeks. In 2017, if all goes according to plan, she’ll put out books 4-6 in the same series as well.(…)

Creating a Print Book Box Set

By Marcy Kennedy (@MarcyKennedy) The last two months during my guest posts at Fiction University, we’ve looked at why we might want to create a box set of our books and how to create a single-author ebook box set. This month I wanted to look at one of the most challenging questions for indie authors(…)

Using Characters’ Apology Language to Create and Resolve Tension

By Marcy Kennedy (@MarcyKennedy) Some of the biggest challenges we face as writers are creating characters that feel like individuals and building authentic tension between our characters, especially if those characters are allies. Today I’m going to look at how figuring out our characters’ apology language can help. (You might also want to read Gary(…)

What Writing Topics Would You Like to Read in 2017?

By Marcy Kennedy (@MarcyKennedy) I’m about to head into my blogging vacation over the holidays, but during that time I’ll also be making plans for what I’ll write about on this blog in 2017. I’m not someone who likes to guess what would be most helpful to all of you. I’d rather just ask. So(…)

Homophone of the Month: Rein vs. Reign

By Chris Saylor As one of my monthly features, I cover homophones. I’m going to explain the different meanings, and whenever I can, I’ll give you little tricks to help you remember the difference between them. If nothing else, you’ll at least realize going forward that these two words might be confused, and you’ll know(…)

Creating Single-Author Box Sets: Part Two

By Marcy Kennedy (@MarcyKennedy) I’m a fan of box sets because they’re an easy, affordable way to get additional products out into the marketplace. And from the perspective of a reader, if I think there’s a good chance that I’ll like the series, I always prefer to buy the box set as opposed to having(…)

Using Ellipses and Dashes in Fiction

By Chris Saylor Today’s post comes from a request. In a comment, Kassandra Lamb wrote, “I am a tad lost on the subject of dashes. Could you do a post on them, Chris? When to use each…” So this one is for you, Kassandra, and for everyone else who is also confused about how to(…)

Five Reasons Genre Matters

By Marcy Kennedy (@MarcyKennedy) I’ve heard writers argue that genre mattered back in the days where the only path to publication was going through a traditional publisher. With the rise of self-publishing as a viable option, they say, we don’t need to understand genre anymore. Here’s why that’s not true. Reason #1 – Traditional publishing(…)

Commonly Confused Words of the Month: Emigrated To

By Chris Saylor Welcome back to my Commonly Confused Words of the Month feature. It’s the spot where I go over words and phrases that you might want to use in dialogue to show something about your character, but you never want to use elsewhere. This month I’ll be looking at the phrase emigrated to.(…)

Overusing Names in Dialogue

By Marcy Kennedy (@MarcyKennedy) I wanted to go back to one of the basics today because this topic seems to be one that every new writer struggles with. (And those of us who are veterans could always use a reminder.) Overusing names, titles, and pet names in dialogue is one of the fastest ways to(…)