The 38 Most Common Fiction Writing Mistakes When you write fiction, you march onto a minefield. This book gives you a map. Oh, what tricky terrain you're traveling! You must reckon with: Character, Conflict, Point of View, Dialogue, Editors, Editors, and Editors, who--by returning stories they see as problem-plagued--can burst your hopes of publication. Where are the problems? Editors rarely take the time to map them out, so Jack Bickham has. In this book, he spotlights the 38 most common fiction writing land mines--writing mistakes that can turn even dynamite story ideas into slush pile rejects. And he guides you in overcoming them. In to-the-point style, he shows you how to: conquer procrastination--and put ink on paper regularly dump wimpy characters--and build characters ready to act look for trouble--and create conflicts for your characters cut coincidence--and put better-than-life logic into fiction escape the fog--and find and stick to your story's direction free feelings--and fire your fiction with passion and emotion In short, Bickham helps you take a giant step toward publication. Read this book. Strengthen your writing. And start setting off explosions where they belong: on the sales charts.
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Fictional life, according to Jack Bickham, is better than real life. You don't get struck by lightning. You are not subject to random acts of cruelty. Events proceed logically. On the other hand, Bickham says, "In fiction, the best times for the writer--and reader--are when the story's main character is in the worst trouble." Not good if you're a fictional character. The 38 Most Common Fiction Writing Mistakes is as engaging as Bickham wants your fiction to be. It is sharp, focused, funny, and pointed. And it is demanding. Bickham, who has written over 65 novels and several fiction-writing guides, has little patience for wannabes. "Writers write," Bickham says. "Everyone else makes excuses." Bickham's pronouncements are decidedly negative: "Don't Describe Sunsets," advises one chapter; "Don't Write About Wimps"; "Don't Let [Your Characters] Be Windbags"; and "Don't Worry What Your Mother Will Think." But his lessons are positive. Behind each dictum is a terse, entertaining, and utterly well-reasoned examination of why the problem is a problem, and what you can do to expunge it from your prose. --Jane SteinbergFrom School Library Journal:
YA-- An easy-to-read book full of valuable information for would-be fiction writers. Bickham issues many ``don't'' statements, but says that behind every negative is a positive. He tries to help writers overcome the 1001 reasons that they develop ``blocks'' with common-sense advice. Slim enough to slip into a briefcase or to keep handy next to a typewriter or word processor, this book will remind some of The Elements of Style by Strunk and White.
Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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