Your Guide to Book Word Counts

As a reader, I’ve never felt a was too long, even more than a thousand pages. And I’ve never found a bad book short enough. One of the most common questions writers ask me: “How long should my manuscript be?” Well, different publishers look for different lengths for different genres. Helpful, eh? There ARE general guidelines, which I’ll list below. But it’s important to know that these are not hard…

How to Develop the Theme of Your Story

Without a deeper meaning than just its plot, your story remains a shell of what it could be. A story with a theme answers, what does this mean? That’s the kind of a story that resonates with readers and stays with them. Getting Started: What Is Theme? Theme is why it happens. Why you’re telling this story. It’s the message you want readers to take away. In fact, I urge…

Your Ultimate Guide to Writing Contests Through 2019

Regardless where you are on your writing journey—from wannabe to bestseller—you can benefit from entering contests. Why? Because the right contest can tell you: Where you stand How you measure up against the competition What you still need to learn Not to mention, you could win prizes. 🙂 That’s why my team and I conducted extensive research to not only find free, high-quality writing contests, but to also give you…

How to Improve Your Writing Skills: 15 Simple Tips

Would you believe that even after writing and publishing nearly 200 books, including 21 New York Times bestsellers, I still take daily steps to hone my writing skills? Whether you’re a beginner or have been at it for decades as I have, writing well takes work. No shortcut, no secret sauce will turn you into a bestselling author overnight. But there are steps to take if you want to become…

How to Write a Book: Everything You Need to Know in 20 Steps

So you want to write a book. Becoming an author can change your life—not to mention give you the ability to impact thousands, even millions, of people. However, writing a book is no cakewalk. As a 21-time New York Times bestselling author, I can tell you: It’s far easier to quit than to finish. When you run out of ideas, when your own message bores you, or when you become…

Show, Don’t Tell: What You Need to Know

Show, don’t tell. But what does it mean? So let’s see if I can solidify the concept in your mind right here, right now. I want to supercharge your showing vs. telling radar—and make it simple. The Difference Between Showing vs. Telling If your character is tall, your reader can deduce that because you mention others looking up when they talk with him. Or he has to duck to get…