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Writer's Corner

   Welome to the Writing Corner, my little place to help fellow writers. Here, I'll be posting articles full of advice on the most common issues young and inexperienced writers face - including myself - and how to learn to recognise and tackle them. This advice comes from my own experiences, either things I've worked out for myself, or have learned from various writing courses and workshops, or from speaking directly to other writers, both self- and traditionally-published.
   Note: in this case, "inexperienced writers" refer to those who have had no professional help from agents, publishers or other literary professionals. "Inexperienced writers" are either unpublished or self-published authors, regardless of whether they've written 2 or 10 books or short stories.

   Below, you'll find links to all the available articles. I add new ones whenever I discover new problems and learn their solutions, and how to put it into practice myself. If you have a problem you'd like advice on, please don't hesitate to contact me! I'd love to build this corner up into something really helpful, and I can guarantee that, whatever your writing troubles are, you're not the only one going through them. So if you're struggling with something and would like advice, get in touch and I'll do my best to help.

   Most posts will include a 'writing exercise' where applicable, which you can do in a notebook, on your laptop, wherever you're able to write freely. These aren't "write a 6-page short story", they're much smaller and more concise, aimed towards identifying your weaknesses, which itself will put you in a position to apply what you've learned and overcome them in the most efficient way possible.

   There are also 'for your novel' sections which encourage you to apply what you've learned to whatever piece you're currently working on, be it a short story or novel of any genre. These generally involve comparing pages, choosing random segments and reading them, searching for trends or issues. It doesn't involve re-writing or sharing anything, so don't panic. It's just the best way of avoiding a wall going up and separating learning from practicality. What you learn here, and in any class or workshop, is for your own work - like learning maths in school: it's not good enough to do amazing in class and get your workbook covered in golden stickers, and then go home and add 2 and 2 to make 5. You have to apply what you learn outside of the study group. Otherwise, you've not really learned it!

Over-Use of Exposition in Creative Writing [or Being 'Wordy' And How To Fix It]

External Articles
Writing Grief [King Theoden Case Study via The Porte Port]

Writer Resources
Apache Open Office Writer is the best free alternative to Microsoft Word. Save as .doc, .rtf, .txt, .html • export as PDF • add footers, headers, page numbers, subtext • and, most importantly: change the background colour of the page to grey to save yourself eyestrain (Tools > Options > Open Office > Appearance > Document Background).
'The Art of Storytelling' Course [personal review] Neil Gaiman's Masterclass course for writers of all mediums and genres. £85 home course with videos & worksheets • no deadlines • available worldwide • once purchased, you can view and revisit it any time.
The Porte Port is a website written by Chris La Porte, and is chock full of useful articles about writing fantasy, using popular culture you're bound to be familiar with as examples.


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