Bookwriter RSS Blog

The Bookwriter RSS Blog will keep you up to date on new articles about writing and story structure, answers to common writing questions and other information designed to help you write your book.

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Autobiography story structure

Question: I am working on my autobiography and would like to get guidance on the structure. Can you please help? Answer: The principles of story structure

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Syd Field: On Screenplay Structure

Comparing Syd Field's model of screenplay structure to other story models

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Does your antagonist have to know they are the antagonist?

Question: I'm very glad I found this website; it's very informative. I have a question but I'm not sure if it pertains more to character development or

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Story goal for a paranormal Romance

Question: I don't know how to word this best but here is a try. I have an idea of what is going to happen in the story that I am writing but I don't really

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Fantasy without Magic is still Fantasy, right?

Question: I've created in my novel an Island with its own culture and people, completely devoid of contact with the outside world. Never does it even try

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Struggle with 1st person dialogue

Question: I am trying to write a story with a two person protagonist using a present tense 1st person narrative. I am struggling to write my story in 1st

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fantasy novel problems

Question: I am thinking of writing a retelling of king arthur, which would include most of the characters of the king arthur world, but there is a twist.

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Name of Novel?

Question: Is it permissible to write a novel (story) which will have the same name of another novel or book? Example: Dark Night by John Doe...... Dark

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Tips on keeping a character consistent?

Hi Glen, Do you have any tips or insights as to how to make it easier to, I guess, know your characters to the point that you don't have to think about

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How to describe physical appearance

Question: I have all my characters pictured perfectly in my mind but I'm not sure how I would describe them when writing. One of my fears is that even

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Outline, storyline and plot.

Question: Please can you explain to me the difference between Outline, story line and plot. Thank you Answer: A plot is a series of events that make

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Love Triangle

Hello, Glen, Ever since I bought a copy of your novel planning book, I have finished writing three romance genre novels and plotting the fourth one (Thank

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What is the difference between the main character and the protagonist?

Question: What is the difference between the main character and the protagonist? Answer: Protagonist is a word that goes back to ancient Greek theatre

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Exclamation Points!!!

Hello, Mr. Strathy. I'm certain you've been bothered with this question so I apologize. But a successful writer used '“Stand to attention, soldier!”

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Tips for writing a large cast of characters

Question: I'm writing a story with a LOT of characters in it, 18 to be exact. It's kind of like the Danganronpa series in the way that it wouldn't work

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difficult topics

Question: How do I cover darker/socially unacceptable topics in my writing without going too far or not being able to find a positive solution to my character's

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Fast Novel Writing

Question: I am writing a story and my mom is rushing me. How do I write faster and swiftly, without my novel looking as if it was spit out of a factory?

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Need help formating title page & header

Question: I need help writing my title page. I know how to set the margins. I've already written my contact info - name - address - phone etc. I need someone

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Book chapters

Question: I would like to know what is acceptable when writing a book for chapter length. My book is about Novella length. I have some chapters that are

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Is this concept cliché?

Question: With all of the writing tips you have on this site I feel as though the writing part won't be too difficult, so I just want your opinion on the

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How to handle multiple protagonists?

Question: I'm writing a story where most of the many characters will be deceased by the end of the story, and I want multiple protagonists because in stories

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Is luck an acceptable character trait?

Question: I've tried to balance it out by having my character's luck failing occasionally and just opting for the least likely outcome rather than something

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Misleading story goal?

Question: At the start of my story, my main character is an apathetic delinquent with little interest in anything. He's only spurred into action by a curse

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Romance Problem: Is this enough?

Hello Glen, I have a question about romance, or romance in the past, rather. I'm only in chapter 5 of my book, I have about 133 pages written so far,

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cliches

Question: I am writing a fantasy book about three prisoners across the world who start a rebellion. I have not decided if the rebellions attack each other

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Thinking about writing a book about the funny things my grandsons say

Question: I've been posting some of the funny things my grandsons say on facebook. Several people have suggested I write a book. I'm undecided if I should

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Does the story relayed in a journal have to be a "co-plot"?

Question: You just answered a question for me about whether ICs can be dead, and that answer was very clear, but something else you said in that response

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New Religious Figures & Ideas for Plot

Question: If one were to write a fiction novel, do you think it would be acceptable to create new Gods (author-created ones) and merge them with the Gods

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Can an impact character be dead?

My current novel-in-progress is fantasy genre, and the protagonist is a healer who develops the ability to transfer (or take) wounds, disease, and poison

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Climax

Question: How do I assemble all the key players when some are quite distant or others are already dead? Can the protgonist have a dream? Can the protagonist

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Reviving Characters

Hello, At the end of my book, the twist is that the main character gives into her selfishness/hate/pride and sacrifices her best friend to a demon in

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How Do The Publishing Industry Like (Ancient) Chinese Stories

Question: Hi.I am a Chinese college student aspiring to write a story on a royal family set in ancient China in English, and would like to make it known.

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Two separate characters telling their story as first person.

Question: This is my first attempt at writing a book. I have planned to alternate my chapters with 2 main characters, both are equally important. I have

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Making a series into stand alone.

Hey there! As I was reading through the articles and questions on this site to help with my own progress as a complete newbie, I stumbled across something

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is it ok to have a more abstract story goal?

I came across this site while looking for writing tips online; of the many sites I saw, this has been the most helpful and comprehensive! I've never taken

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Product Placement, Real World Professional References In My Story

Hi again, Glen! I am curious. When would I need to ask permission to use a product, service, invention and/or a professional public figure's name (like

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Should I go with the ending I want or what my readers want?

Hello. I'm writing a love triangle story. There's this boy who finds himself caught in between two very different special women. One is his best friend,

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Describing a character's outfit theme or motif without being too obvious

Question: I am currently working on a novel & 2 of the characters in my story have outfits which revolve around a theme; one has pie themed outfits (e.g.

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multiple plots

Question: What is the difference between having multiple plots vs just a single plot? I have to decide whether Bridge to Terabithia has multiple or single

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Should novice writers avoid a 1st person POV?

Question: I've begun plotting my story, intending to write it in the first person. However, today I was reading a book, Write Good or Die, in which one

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percentage for helpers

Question: I have written the book.. and an illustrator is doing the graphics. She is also helping do some of the formatting... what percentage would be

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Guess which writing website made the top 100 list for 2017?

The Write Life has just published their list of the 100 Best Websites for Writers for 2017 and I'm happy to announce that How to Write a Book Now has made the cut. We're no. 17 to be exact, just above Inky Girl (a great site for picture book writers and illustrators), not that the list is in order of ranking. I'm glad to be listed among so many sites I've admired over the years.

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Lists of blackmails?

Question: So, here is the description of the short story I want to write about: Two dirt-poor art students (Main character and her friend a.k.a love interest)

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Trouble connecting with main character

Question: A friend of mine read the first few chapters of my novel and helped me pinpoint a major problem: my introverted main character is becoming lost

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Is my plot too complicated / bad?

I'm writing a novel that mostly falls within the chick lit category (however, it's probably not typical one plotwise but it is more about the witty, humorous

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romance and fantasy story

Hello, I love reading stories and all types of novels I would to write my own story for others to read as well since I find it fun also I would to write

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When should a character get over another character's death?

Hi, I'm not actually stuck, but I don't want my whole book to be stupid dark and somber and I don't know where to stop the character's melancholic reflections.

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Double plot structure?

Hello, firstly, I just have to say thank you very much for creating this website. It has helped me so much in my writing development and has also helped

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I have a good story idea, but the execution is boring. Help!

Question: I came up with an idea for a story/novel. The entire book is about a 17-year-old boy who was locked in a prison by his mother when he was 6 but

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