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5 Key Questions to Ask as You Write Your Novel

5-Key-Questions-to-Ask-aS-You-Write-Your-Novel copy

As a professional manuscript critiquer and copyeditor, I ask a lot of questions.

Sure, I also give a lot of suggestions and fix badly constructed sentences. But it’s the questions that get to the heart of the story.

Asking authors questions helps them think about what they’re writing and why.

So much important information seems to be missing in so many novels, especially first novels by aspiring authors.

Novel writing is tricky;

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Character Emotion: Is It Written All Over Their Face?

Character-Emotion-Is-It-Written-All-Over-Their-Face copy

The face is the first thing we notice in real life, and the focal point during any conversation.

We connect to a person’s gaze, paying attention to how their eyes widen, squint, focus inward or dart. We also watch their mouth, noting lip presses, teeth flashes, frowns, smiles and pursed lips. Eyebrow lifts, the forehead crinkling and relaxing…each facial micro movement is a message, a clue to what the person is thinking and feeling.

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Beyond the Cliché: How to Create Characters that Fascinate


By Becca Puglisi of  The Bookshelf Muse

How many characters have been created since the first story was told? Thousands? Gajillions?

With so many characters floating around out there, it’s not surprising that many of them have been recycled over time:

Merlin, Dumbledore, Obi-Wan Kenobi
Bilbo Baggins, Han Solo, Katniss Everdeen
Cinderella’s stepmother, The queen from Snow White, Maleficent

If you want to create characters that fascinate,

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