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 F E A T U R E   A R C H I V E  

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Know the Unwritten Rules of Your Genre
In order to write successfully in a certain genre, you must know the unwritten rules – in short, what the readers in that genre want to see. This is overlooked by countless writers who either jump eagerly into a specific genre without researching it first, or knowingly try to break the rules.

When to Use the Cliffhanger Ending
Many new writers believe that they should write cliffhanger endings to each book in a projected series. They see it as stimulating the readers’ curiosity and providing incentive to buy the next book. But readers may see this technique as extremely manipulative.

What is a Character Biography?
Your character biography is a collection of traits and information that helps you develop a complex feel for your character. Think of your character biography as a file into which you can uninhibitedly cram anything you think has a bearing on your character.

What is Improbable Simultaneous Action?
Improbable simultaneous action happens when we writers describe our characters doing two or more actions that no one realistically could, or would want, to do at the same time.

What is Point of View in Fiction?
Point of view (or viewpoint) refers to how your character conveys your story. The perspective that you choose affects how much information you can offer the readers and how emotionally engaging you can make your story.

What is a Fiction Blurb?
A fiction book blurb is a short document, maybe only about 200 words, that hints at the book’s contents while making the reader curious to read more. Typically, your blurb should introduce your main character and his biggest problem, but not reveal any important plot points.

Check out the Website DoesTheDogDie.com
The website DoesTheDogDie.com lists movies with succinct information on whether the plot of each requires an animal to be harmed or die. This enables the soft-hearted to avoid such movies. I wish there were an equivalent website for fiction books.

What is a Fiction Synopsis?
A synopsis is a plot summary written in plain, unbiased language that reveals everything that happens in the story, even secrets, plot twists, and surprise endings. This is different from a blurb, which only gives a glimpse of the book’s beginning to entice readers to continue reading.

Should Fiction Authors Speak Out on Issues?
As a fiction author, you can write whatever social and political themes you like into your work. But should you step beyond your fiction writing and speak out on the internet or in interviews on social and political issues? The decision is yours, but it carries risk.

Reference Books Fiction Writers Need
As a fiction writer, you need a few reference books to help smooth your writing into its most accessible finished state. The more polished your writing, the more willing an agent or editor will be work with you. This is because you have just made their jobs much easier.

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