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Dabblestone Writing is also accepting original short horror fiction submissions to be published online. Go to Dabblestone WRITING Presents...HORROR STORIES for more details.

Advice on Writing Fiction

Stephen King: Stephen King’s book: “On Writing”: In his book, On Writing, Stephen King warns against using clichéd similes such as, “Bob fought like a tiger.” He states that one of his favorite similies is George V. Higgins’, “It was darker than a carload of assholes.” I took this advice to heart and was able to improve the former by entwining it with the latter to make this simile, “He fought like a carload of asshole tigers.” : )) “If you don’t have the time to read, you don’t have the time or the tools to write.” Stephen King. Posted Jan. 25, 2008.

Ray Bradbury spoke to young writers. His advice was to read one short story, one poem, and one essay every day. For novelists, Ray Bradbury advised to write a short story. The idea is that after you complete the short story after a week, you will feel that you have accomplished something and will have confidence to continue writing. As opposed to writing a novel, where you can write for months or years and have no published work to show for it. Bradbury is an inspiration. Posted Jan. 26, 2008.

Ray Bradbury lectures on Writing Fiction

Do you know where you are going with your story? Some writers just start typing without knowing how the story will end. Do you do this? How can you explain this? I’m an outliner. I have to know where things are going, so I can make sure the characters get there without rushing or confusion at the end. Posted 01-29-08.

Writing Tips

Writing Tip #1: Use active instead of passive voice. Example: Instead of saying “The box was carried to the car by Jim.”, you should say “Jim carried the box to the car.”
Writing Tip #2: Use character names that have meaning. Example: Mrs. Sprout teaches Herbology at Hogwart’s in the Harry Potter series.
Writing Tip #3: Keep a good thesaurus and dictionary on hand. Roget’s Pocket Thesaurus is one of the best.
Writing Tip #4: Develop your characters fully. Readers will have a tough time empathizing with poorly or weakly developed characters.
Writing Tip #5: Remember beats in your novel. Beats are when you occasionally remind your readers what has happened up to that point.
Writing Tip #6: Write, then re-write. A novel is never finished after the first draft. It takes a lot of rewriting and tweeking.
Writing Tip #7: Avoid cliches. If it's been done before...avoid it. If it's been done to death, don't raise it from the dead.
Writing Tip #8: The Set Up: For example, if your character's car is going to break down at a key moment, don't have it come out of nowhere, set it up by having the character struggle with the car earlier in the story.
Writing Tip #9: Write about what you know. If you are comfortable with a topic or setting, use that in your story. It will allow to write with confidence, command the reader's attention, and relieve you of time-consuming research duties.

Wendy Spero Inspires

Wendy Spero is an actress, comedian, and writer who has performed on Comedy Central, VH1, NBC, and the Food Network. Her one woman show, "Microthrills", won "Best Solo Show" at the ECNY awards. Her most recent solo show, "Who's Your Daddy?", which premiered at The NY International Fringe Festival in August 2003, had a year long run at the Upright Citizens Brigade Theater in NYC before being produced at the 2004 Edinburgh Fringe Festival. Wendy has been featured in The New York Post, NY Magazine, The New Yorker, and The New York Times. In addition to recording stories for NPR, Wendy has written an Op-Ed piece for The New York Times, a feature story for Esquire, and an essay for Bar Mitzvah Disco, a comical anthology from Random House about The Bar Mitzvah Culture of the 1980s. Wendy is currently co-writing a pilot for HBO and just finished her first non-fiction book, "Microthrills", which will be published in 2006 by Hudson Street/Penguin. Back Stage Magazine listed Wendy as one of the "Top Ten Standout Stand-ups Worth Watching" and she had been named Best Female Comic of The Year by Timeout NY. This video is part of the Authors@Google series.

Writer Wendy Spero Speaks

Dabblestone Writing is currently accepting original short horror fiction submissions to be published online. Go to Dabblestone WRITING Presents...HORROR STORIES for more details.

 

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