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Write Like a Native

September 21, 2015 by Fiction Editor Beth Hill

A reader’s question got me thinking about the details of a story’s setting, about choosing details that fit the actual location as well as the story. I also wanted to share a reminder to check details for real locations—make sure your details are correct.

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Change It This Way or That Way?

September 8, 2015 by Fiction Editor Beth Hill

There are multiple ways to make changes to your story text. Make sure that you’re not using the same kinds of changes again and again.

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Nothing Words—Somehow

September 29, 2014 by Fiction Editor Beth Hill

Somehow is a nothing word that doesn’t reveal anything new about a character or an event. Cut uses of somehow from your stories.

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Nothing Words—People

September 11, 2014 by Fiction Editor Beth Hill

Like “thing,” “people” is a nothing word. A filler. But you can easily change the bland and generic “people” to a word that better fits the scene and the character using the word.

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Nothing Words—Thing

September 8, 2014 by Fiction Editor Beth Hill

Fiction can be made stronger by simply using strong and precise words in place of do-nothing filler words. Clear your stories of the filler word “thing.”

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Exclude Us From Novels

August 11, 2014 by Fiction Editor Beth Hill

A look at words, punctuation, and writing elements that can be safely excised from novels, creating more memorable fiction.

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Habits, Motions, and Common Actions of Fictional Characters

July 2, 2014 by Fiction Editor Beth Hill

Tips for putting characters into motion with habits and physical movement without disrupting the main action of a story.

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Zeroing in on Words

June 8, 2014 by Fiction Editor Beth Hill

Explore how the change in words affects individual moments and scenes and stories, and how words can direct fiction.

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Those %!@# Expletives

May 26, 2013 by Fiction Editor Beth Hill

Expletives—there is, there were, it is, it was, and so forth—can make sentences dull. And sometimes they’re just used too often in our writing. Learn how expletives can work either for or against story.

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Tone, Mood, & Style—The Feel of Fiction

April 19, 2013 by Fiction Editor Beth Hill

Tone, mood, and style—three of the elements of fiction—each contribute to the feel of a story. Learn what each is and how they affect one another.

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