An Author and a Gentleman

There’s a fun story I’ve been sharing with friends that I think my blog readers also will enjoy—especially those of you who like thrillers. (And isn’t that just about everybody?) No, the story I have to tell you isn’t a thriller, but it has to do with thrillers, as you will see in a minute. No fair skipping to the ... Read More

‘Fewer’ vs. ‘Less’—Which Is Correct?

I haven’t gotten on my high horse about grammar errors in a while, so I guess I’d better write an article about another common goof or risk my reputation as a grammar grouch. Today we answer the question of “fewer” vs. “less”—which is correct? Both are legitimate words, of course. It’s a matter of when it’s correct to use one ... Read More

When Self-Help Writing Fails: Avoiding the Temptation of Personal Journaling

But readers of self-help don’t want to be dumped on by someone else’s pain. They’ve got enough to handle of their own. They don’t want to read what sounds like someone else’s journaling and catharsis-in-progress. That makes them feel overwhelmed. Instead, they want the writer to get to the point, to summarize their past (if they’re going to mention it at all)—not deal it out to them, wound by painful wound.

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How to Start Writing a Nonfiction Book—Outlining Made Easy

How to start writing a nonfiction book? If you’re like many business people, life coaches, and other subject-matter experts, there’s a book idea rolling around in your head that has perhaps been there for years. Maybe you’ve taken the plunge and started writing, only to find yourself stuck in a ditch. Or maybe you’ve no idea where to start, and ... Read More

Present Tense or Past Tense? First Person or Third? Which to Use for Your Novel or Memoir

You’re getting ready to write your novel or memoir. How do you decide which tense you should use: past or present? In the case of a novel, you also need to decide whether to write in first person or third. These are common dilemmas and ones worth exploring, because selecting the right tense and point of view from the start will save you getting stuck part-way into the writing, unable to make that choice work for the remainder of your story.

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