Help for Writers

5 Ideas for Plot Twists

I admit that this might start to sound a bit like the developments in your favourite (or most-hated) soap opera - but remember: readers LOVE to be surprised! Your job is to tread the fine line between giving them a plot twist that they didn't see coming, and having...

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Mind-Mapping Your Story

Writers are always thinking about plots and outlines. If you're writing a book, you're thinking about plots, subplots, plot twists, characters, motivation and heaven knows what else. If you're writing an article, you're thinking about the structure: introduction, main...

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Scenes and Structure

Beginning writers often tend to think of a book as a series of chapters. It's actually more useful to regard it as a series of linked scenes. Why? Because it makes it a lot easier to control the pace of your story. 'Pace' may be described as the forward movement of...

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Writing a Prologue

What is a prologue? When should you use one? Should you forget about a prologue and simply start at Chapter 1? All too often we pick up a published book and read the prologue, then wonder why it was there at all. It doesn't seem to do anything that Chapter One...

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How to Use Sub Plots

If your book is suffering from the dreaded 'sagging middle' syndrome, it's likely that you either don't have a subplot or you haven't paid enough attention to your subplots. (In shorter books, such as those for juvenile readers, you can usually 'pep up' the middle by...

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