Category: general advice

  • Where to find writing (and publishing) advice

    One of the challenges in taking writing and publishing advice from other authors is that they usually know only what works/worked for them. An author who has only been publishing for a little while has a very limited experience to draw from. I understand why published authors want to give advice despite not having expertise—there’s significant […]

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  • How to end a story

    Authors sometimes fail to create successful story resolutions because they end up with resolutions that do not reflect the protagonist’s efforts to reach the story goal. So, for example, if the protagonist’s story goal is to save the family farm in Kansas, and for eighty thousand words we see her defeat challenges ranging from tornadoes […]

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  • How to tell an emotionally compelling story

    I recently read The Story Paradox by Jonathan Gottschall, which is all about the dangers of storytelling. If you’re interested in learning how stories work, you’ll want to set aside some time to read this book. I wanted to talk about a point he makes early in the book, which is that stories where the […]

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  • Respecting the process

    The creative process is not timely and linear, which is why as an editor I don’t book edits before an author’s manuscript is finished, though I will book coaching when an author is stalled and needs to do some brainstorming and problem-solving. I implemented this policy after the tenth or twelfth writer who had booked […]

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  • Writers’ Workshop – Starting January 9, 2023!

    Register here. In each session of the Club Ed for Writers Writers’ Workshop, we’ll discuss storytelling techniques and how to identify common problems in your own story. In the first session, January 9 – February 28, 2023, the storytelling technique we’ll be focusing on is character (as in character development, character arc, character goals and […]

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  • Moving from nonfiction to fiction

    As a story development editor, I have had a number of coaching clients over the years and almost all of them have been established nonfiction writers who are honing their fiction-writing skills. So you can imagine their most common questions have to do with making this leap. Fiction and nonfiction writing have a lot of […]

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  • When shortcuts are short circuits

    In my many years as a book author, agent, and editor, I’ve met thousands of writers, professional and aspiring, and it has struck me that we tend to do one of these two things, neither of which is in our best interest: We don’t put our work out into the world. We’re waiting for some […]

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  • New! Classes for Writers

    If you’re a writer (or know a writer), you might find these new classes helpful: Writing Romance Writing Mystery, Thriller, and Suspense Writing Science Fiction and Fantasy Each class ($79) covers the basics of writing in the genre, including how to avoid common problems, keys to character development, and more If you’re doing NaNoWriMo (or […]

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  • Moving on to your next book

    A long time ago I wrote a novel I loved. Loved. It was a flawed novel, as many beginning efforts are, but that doesn’t mean I didn’t love it. I still love that novel, even though I’m perfectly well aware of its imperfections. I may in fact love it because of its imperfections. It is […]

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Jennifer Fox




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