Great Tips for Backstory in Your Novel

Writing the backstory for your character can be a bit tricky. You never want to be too wordy. Telling the story of your character should be smooth and effortless. Of course, that is not the case with my writing which is why a lot of revision is necessary. Author Paul Bishop at Venture Galleries has some great tips for creating backstory for your characters. Stop by for a visit.

Back Story (Parker novel)

Back Story (Parker novel) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

What do you do about the back story?

MY FIRST NOVEL (Shroud of Vengeance) was part of an ongoing adult western series (think Louis LAmour with sex scenes) featuring a character named Diamondback. The editor gave me the bible for the series providing the limited information needed as part of the characters backstory: Diamondback got his nickname after being the victim of a horrible whipping, he is wanted for a murder he didn’t commit, he wanders the west acting as a traveling judge settling disputes between outlaws and he is very, very popular with the ladies.

It was pretty simple to include this information as part of the ongoing series of books, which could be read in any order without any intrusive information dumps or large chunks of narrative explanation. Drop the nickname on the first page, show his scars when he takes off his shirt for the first sex scene, and tie the plot into a dispute between dangerous outlaws for Diamondback to settle. With series of this type, the main character remains static. There are no consequences or character arcs to carry over from one book to the next. READ MORE HERE.

Great Advice For A Query Letter For Magazines

Query letters are often a problem for writers. Often times, the fear of writing one will keep you from taking the plunge. The Adventurous Writer has a query letter example that will impress you and help you.

While there’s no “winning formula” to writing excellent query letters, it’s good to see how published freelance writers pitch their article ideas. So, here’s a query letter I sent to MSN Health, which the editors accepted two days later.

How do you write a successful query letter? By getting to the point immediately. Read more here.

How To Start Writing A Memoir

The working memory model

The working memory model (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

There are a lot of interesting stories that each one of us has hidden deep within us. Some are fictional while others are personal. That’s not to say your fictional story isn’t personal, I am simply referring to a memoir. I was recently asked  how to get started writing a memoir. I sent a link to the person asking from the site of Alan Rinzler. Her shared insight from an article written by Tamim Ansary. This article simplifies how writers can lay out their outline and write the memoir. Happy writing.


Writing a memoir: Intersecting memory and story

Writing a memoir is one of the most stimulating but difficult literary challenges an author can undertake. Nevertheless, it’s a hugely popular genre. Five of the top ten hardcover nonfiction books on the NY Times bestseller list this week are memoirs.

Aspiring memoir writers can find help in books and by searching online, but there’s nothing like a live workshop with a master teacher.

One highly recommended instructor is Tamim Ansary, the Afghan-American author of the critically acclaimed literary memoir West of Kabul, East of New York (Farrar, Straus & Giroux). This spring, Ansary will be conducting a six-week memoir workshop in the San Francisco Bay Area, so I jumped at the opportunity to ask him about his views on writing and teaching this subject.

What is a memoir and how is it different from a personal journal or novel based on your life?

Read more here.


How Does Your Writing Influence Readers?

New World Writing

Writing is one of the greatest pleasures I have ever had. For most of us it’s not about fame and fortune it’s about getting our thoughts and stories on the page to express and opinion, make a life changing statement or simply to entertain. I came across an article by Joanna Paterson that just reminds us of the importance of our writing even in its simplicity. Read more here.

9 Possible Ways That Writing Changes Things

September 2, 2009 · by Joanna Paterson · in Why Writing Matters

How does writing make things possible?

It’s a question that unfolds in lots of different ways.

Some of it is around the way we write to open things up for others.

But I’m also interested in the way that writing can shift things for us, inside: opening up a sense of creativity, playfulness, the freedom to dream dreams and explore what’s possible.

Freelance Writers: Things To Do List

At the Blogathon Headquarters of Michelle Rafter is a great list of things writers can do while everyone else is taking the day off for the holiday. I personally won’t be doing much other than swimming, eating, and drinking. If you find this is a great time to catch up on a to-do list, Michelle has some excellent idea.

Happy July 4th!

English: Downtown Miami on July 4, 2007
English: Downtown Miami on July 4, 2007 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


25 things freelancers can do when everyone else is on vacation | WordCount.


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