Category Archives: Writing Course

How To Read Kindle Books On Computer

Are you one of those people who doesn’t use Kindles, Kindle apps, or anything Amazon? But you still want to read that cool new book that’s only on Kindle? Don’t worry! My article will save you

Check it out and see HOW TO READ KINDLE BOOKS ON COMPUTER.**

I find myself running into this problem more and more, so without further ado, here is how to do the tricky things I have described above in the most confusing wording possibly known to mankind. (See? I’m fun!)

Click on the blue links to go to the download site. If there isn’t a link, I couldn’t find one. You’ll understand when you get there.

Notes About Kindle

  1. YOU’LL NEED AN AMAZON ACCOUNT FOR THESE. I’m sure you already have one if you have a computer, though. If you don’t, you’re very very special and I praise you.
  2. Unless otherwise noted, all of these apps and sites link together all your devices. So if you read to page 3 on one device, you can pick up on page 3 with the other. It’s simple, but very helpful.
  3. Unless otherwise stated (different word hehe), all of these things (?) allow you to buy/share/read/rate your books. Obviously, you can read on all of them. I mean come on. That’s what it’s for. That, and making money. What?
  4. I will make sure to put if any of these aren’t free. I think they’re all free, but the books you have to buy won’t be. There are some free books on Amazon, believe it or not.
  5. Oh yeah. When I say Amazon and Kindle, these are mostly interchangeable. Amazon is the website, Kindle is the reading device, but they’re basically the same because you can access them from each other. It’s like a big spider web with lots of dead insects in it.

FOR MICROSOFT COMPUTERS

First option is Kindle for PC. This is the main one you want. It gives you all the benefits of a Kindle, such as highlighting, notes, sharing, buying, and obviously reading. It makes all of this available on your computer, so it’s basically an app for your computer. There’s color, different brightness settings, etc. etc. It’s a Kindle on your computer. For the full details, go click that bright blue link (should be blue anyways).

The second option is directly on your browser. Kindle Cloud Reader. Basically, you’re reading the books on your computer, without an app or anything. Think of it as a Kindle Blog. There’s a SUPER HELPFUL ARTICLE HERE that explains tips and stuff so much better than I ever could, so open up those two links and get reading brother/sister/aunt.

The Kindle App may be in your app store. I don’t even know. I have a feeling it is, though, so check.

FOR MAC COMPUTERS or CHROME COMPUTERS

Seven words: App store. Both Macbook and Chromebook users will find the Kindle App directly in their app store. This is the easiest way to read them on your computer, because to be honest there’s only two ways. One– the app. Two– the browser. And the app is a much nicer choice, trust me. Find it by going to your app store, typing in Kindle App, and start your reading.

The second option is directly on your browser. Kindle Cloud Reader. Basically, you’re reading the books on your computer, without an app or anything. Think of it as a Kindle Blog. There’s a SUPER HELPFUL ARTICLE HERE that explains tips and stuff so much better than I ever could, so open up those two links and get reading brother/sister/aunt.

FOR PHONES/TABLETS

I think every phone or tablet type has an Kindle App in the app store, to be honest, so that’s your best bet. And it’s completely free. So go to your app store, get your books, and start reading.

If you insist on not doing apps and want to read directly on your web browser, the second option is directly on your browser. Kindle Cloud Reader. Basically, you’re reading the books on your computer, without an app or anything. Think of it as a Kindle Blog. There’s a SUPER HELPFUL ARTICLE HERE that explains tips and stuff so much better than I ever could, so open up those two links and get reading brother/sister/aunt.

BASICALLY

You have two options.

  1. Read it on an app from your app store (or Kindle for PC if you’re on a Microsoft thing, which may also have a Kindle App in its store)
  2. Read it on your web browser, via Kindle Cloud Reader

 

**There’s really no way to print off e-books, without emailing the author and asking for a copy that you can print off. My email is davidkummer7@gmail.com and I’m totally willing to do that for ya.

Lesson #14: Links

Here are the links that make up the additional resources. Hopefully, you find some helpful!

 

For each category, I will offer 1 book and 3 online resources (articles, websites, etc.) that you can use to improve in whatever area of the craft you’re looking for! If you are seeking help in a different area or just want to ask me some questions, email me at davidkummer7@gmail.com.

 

Every single one of these links is extremely helpful, just let me tell you. So give it a shot, and work your way through these as your daily reading list 🙂

 

Self-Editing-

 

Book:

http://www.amazon.com/Write-Edit-Self-Publish-First-eB

 

Online 1:

http://thewritelife.com/self-editing-basics/

 

Online 2:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/david-kudler/book-editing_b_2990583.html

 

Online 3:

http://www.jerryjenkins.com/self-editing/

 

Publishing-

 

Book:

http://www.amazon.com/Createspace-Kindle-Self-Publishing-Masterclass-Step-/dp/1493697595/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1462320760&sr=8-1&keywords=selfpublishing+on+createspace

 

Online 1:

https://janefriedman.com/self-publish-your-book/

 

Online 2:

https://kdp.amazon.com/help?topicId=A2VHRJZXET0TWT

or

https://kdp.amazon.com/help?topicId=A37Z49E2DDQPP3

 

Online 3:

http://www.agentquery.com/convert_your_manuscript_into_kindle_ebook.aspx

 

Promoting-

 

Book:

http://www.amazon.com/Kindle-Marketing-Secrets-Promote-Publishing-ebook/dp/B00IHZ0IFM/ref=sr_1_2?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1462321535&sr=1-2&keywords=how+to+promote+your+book

 

Online 1:

http://www.yourwriterplatform.com/actions-to-build-writer-platform/

 

Online 2:

http://www.yourwriterplatform.com/promote-and-market-your-book/

 

Online 3:

http://authorunlimited.com/50-ways-to-promote-your-book/

 

Sequels-

 

Book: No Book.

Instead here’s another article: http://www.tor.com/2011/12/21/writing-the-second-book-not-any-easier/

 

Online 1:

http://www.bookdaily.com/authorresource/blog/post/1825671

 

Online 2:

http://www.helpingwritersbecomeauthors.com/how-to-write-a-sequel-thats-better-than-the-first-book/

 

Online 3:

http://www.missliterati.com/blog/How-To-Write-A-Sequel-The-Right-Way

 

Newsletter/Author Platforms-

 

Book:

http://www.amazon.com/Authors-Platform-Beginners-Building-Blocks-ebook/dp/B011K6B290/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1462324048&sr=1-1&keywords=building+an+author+platform

 

Online 1:

http://www.wordstream.com/blog/ws/2014/08/05/increase-email-signups

 

Online 2:

http://www.smartpassiveincome.com/the-beginners-guide-to-starting-a-newsletter/

 

Online 3:

http://www.wikihow.com/Start-a-Newsletter

 

Goodreads-

 

Book:

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00BKE039I/ref=dp-kindle-redirect?ie=UTF8&btkr=1

 

Online 1:

http://www.magnoliamedianetwork.com/set-goodreads-author-profile/

 

Online 2:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/penny-c-sansevieri/how-to-become-a-goodreads_b_3719161.html

 

Online 3:

http://www.authormedia.com/how-to-promote-books-goodreads/

 

Good Characters-

 

Book:

http://www.amazon.com/dp/014312157X/ref=pd_lpo_sbs_dp_ss_1?pf_rd_p=1944687762&pf_rd_s=lpo-top-stripe-1&pf_rd_t=201&pf_rd_i=0805011714&pf_rd_m=ATVPDKIKX0DER&pf_rd_r=0WF8V1R9Q4DXNZQ3T9CW

 

Online 1:

http://terribleminds.com/ramble/2014/01/13/25-things-a-great-character-needs/

 

Online 2:

http://thewritepractice.com/resources/characterization/

 

Online 3:

http://writetodone.com/create-memorable-characters-8-sleights-of-hand/?inf_contact_key=a31383b0c9feb401769bdfabc5cfde5f3ffe700e8e9cc65e620d0eccc7bcd1cf

 

Miscellaneous **best section**-

 

Book:

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1586481495/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=1586481495&linkCode=as2&tag=jerrjenk-20&linkId=R5SMGCAICFRL6M7O

 

Online 1:

http://www.writersdigest.com/wp-content/uploads/101-Best-Websites-for-Writers-2015.pdf

 

Online 2:

http://www.hongkiat.com/blog/writing-sites-for-fiction-writers/

 

Online 3:

http://www.nownovel.com/blog/writing-tips-from-authors-nobel/?utm_source=Now+Novel&utm_campaign=f2cf9fca9b-Blog_Mail_All_1_08_2016&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_3ca58c8841-f2cf9fca9b-57048093

 

Well there you go 🙂 I really hope these help you as much as they have me. Please, please let me know what you thought about the course, and send me an email over at davidkummer7@gmail.com!

Lesson #13: How to Improve

Section 4: How to Improve

The best advice you’ll ever get about writing comes from the single mother on the bench, or the tired man in the business suit, or the waitress who’s stressed out.

We’re almost done with the writing course now. One more lesson after this.

 

I do hope you can find some helpful tools in this course, and that you’ve learned a lot. I know I’ve learned some just by my research and by laying everything out on paper. If you’ve enjoyed the course, found it helpful, or have any other thoughts please let me know in the comments section below or email me at davidkummer7@gmail.com.

 

So before we begin, I’m announcing a short novella I’ve been working on that hopefully will be a good example of all the points I’ve mentioned in this course. To find out more about that novella and when it will be coming out, subscribe to my newsletter at http://eepurl.com/bPgy4n. I’ll also keep you informed on my blog here. (If you’re reading this in 2017 and beyond, it’s probably out already. Look on Amazon under the best sellers. Ha kidding!)

 

Now, for the actual lesson…

 

How to Improve

Everybody wants to improve their writing. This is a given.

 

Why? Because if you stand still and you don’t improve, you’ll end up stale and uninspired. You’ll write the same story over and over again, losing your tough on good fiction. No matter how big your name is, or how well-know or rich you are, you have to keep improving.

 

One author who comes to mind, and who many people think has become “stale” is Stephen King. Whether you agree or not, the point is that even big-time authors can be seen as uninspired and their work as not improving. (Now, of course every author has critics, but that’s a lesson for a different day.)

 

So how do you keep your momentum going? And how do you start it in the first place? Well, that’s where a couple points come to mind.

Read

Reading is one of the most important things for an author to do. It gives you ideas, it gives you encouragement and guidance, and ultimately makes up a lot of who you are.

 

The best authors are the best readers, most of the time. Don’t try to be an exception. Just follow the proven path, and read. If you don’t like reading, then find a book that interests you. Anybody can find one, I promise. I’m in a bunch of classes with teenage boys (not very academic-driven ones) at the moment, and even they can find books that interest them. So I’m certain you can too.

Challenge Yourself

I was originally going to put “write” for this one, but anybody can write. I realized it’s not the act so much as the purpose that affects how it turns out. Let me explain.

 

If you want to get better, if you have a deep desire to get better, then you will. If you give it everything and you write challenging stories that are meant to increase your author-superpowers, then they will help. So when you write, purposely think about doing better. And you will. It’s as simple as that.

Listen/Watch

There’s a world around you, full of people and places and things and emotions and ideas and events and drama. And that world is what you’re basing your book off of. Even if it’s Fantasy or Sci-Fi or something “out of this world,” it’s really not.

 

Let me prove it. What language are you writing in? Is that an earth-language? Yeah, it is. You’re writing about this world, in one way or another. So study this world.

 

Listen to the world, watch the world, read about the world, be in the world. The best advice you’ll ever get about writing comes from the single mother on the bench, or the tired man in the business suit, or the waitress who’s stressed out. Because they’re real, and you need your characters to be.

Pretty Words: An Essay On Bad Writing

Pretty words are bad words. To be honest. Beautiful words confuse readers. To be honest. Words are lines on paper; meaning is carried behind them. And if your words are too pretty, they act as a barrier to that meaning. Don’t make the reader dig through tons of “beautiful writing” to get to the meaning. The meaning will be beautiful, or it won’t. That’s what you change. Let the words be words- simple and easy to read.

 

Here’s an article on the matter by Lisa Cron. It’s pretty dang good, and I think you should read it, but if not I’ll paraphrase below.

 

http://writerunboxed.com/2016/07/14/why-its-crucial-to-write-ugly/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+WriterUnboxed+%28Writer+Unboxed%29

 

Summary:

 

This is a story about how “writing ugly” is better. You could write the most beautiful words and amazing sentences, but the story could be bland. Writing is about relating to people, not amazing people with your prose.

 

It’s not about the words, it’s about the story they’re giving voice to – which is why often ‘bad’ writing has the power to captivate us: it’s the story that has us by the throat, not a bunch of million dollar metaphors. Without an actual story, ‘beautiful’ words are empty, devoid of meaning.”

 

“It’s the story that spawns the beautiful words, not the other way around. And ironically, when you have dug deeply into your story, expressing it in the simplest words is what often conveys the most meaning.”

 

“As proof, the next time you’re lost in a novel that has you up long past your bedtime because you just have to know what happens next, ask yourself: am I ever thinking, ‘I can’t wait to find out what exquisitely beautiful sentence this wordsmith will serve up next!’ or ‘I’m on the edge of my seat waiting for a glimpse of the next lovely, luscious metaphor. Be still my heart!’”

 

“Writing pretty comes last. Creating a story comes first.”

Conclusion

Next time around, I got one more lesson for you. One more. It’s a bunch of resources for you to use, on topics that are very broad. I’ve tried to get some of the best places for you to get answers, both in the forms of books and online articles. Trust me, it’s good. You’re gonna wanna check some out.

 

So now, we’re done. You’ve completed this course, and I really hope you’ve learned some things. Do your best to follow these tips, and you’ll become a much better writer than me.

 

The best part about writing isn’t the money, or the pride you take in your work, or the amazing hobby it turns out to be (and possibly even a job). No, that’s not it. The best part about writing is that you’re changing the world. That people will read your work, and you will put thoughts in their heads. You’re making a difference, and you’re having fun doing it.

 

And the first time someone pays money, sits down, dedicates hours of their time to read your book… Well, that’s the best feeling in the world. I really hope you get it soon.

 

Email me at davidkummer7@gmail.com. I’d love to get to know you, and help you with any specific questions you have. I look forward to the next generation of amazing writers. Let’s just all agree to be great, you know?

 

Lesson #12: Constant

Constant

Writers write; authors create; you are both. Do both.

 

So you’ve published your first book.

 

You’ve written what you currently think is a masterpiece, and in a few months you’ll look back and not like it nearly as much.

 

After you finish that first book, you either feel completely out of ideas or fully stocked on them. So what do you do now? Now that you’re a published author, what’s the next step?

Review Your Plans

 

As I said above, you have a lot of plots.

 

(If you don’t have a lot, then come back to this section when you do. A way to get plots is to use the lesson where I talked about plots, which was either #2 or #3. Anyways, you get a handful of ideas then come here and we will sift through them to find the gems. Or at least, you will. I’ll be watching from my bed.)

 

So as we go through these plots, we will decide on a few things. Using this, we will see which are good to work with, and which you should keep developing.

 

The first point of interest is the characters and the conflict. Is the conflict enough for whatever length you’re writing (an entire book, a short story, etc.)? If not, it might need some work. Are the characters complex enough to keep the reader interested for that long? If not, they might need some work.

 

If you can’t see already, most of these areas are dependent on the length of a book. For instance, the conflict in a short story doesn’t have to be as big as the one in a novel. The characters don’t have to be as complex or thought-out, the setting isn’t as big of a deal. It’s just a different work.

 

The most important question to ask of your book idea is: Could I write an entire book out of this? Could I plan 20 to 30 chapters? That’s the important thing to figure out.

Write More

Ultimately, after your first book, you should be looking to write another. And if you can’t get any great ideas for a novel, don’t worry! There are plenty of options!

 

Short stories can be a very powerful marketing tool. Sitting down for a day, chopping out a good 5,000 word story, and then editing the crap out of it before you publish can do great things for you.

 

And even if you never plan on publishing it, why not write one? You can use them for giveaways, for rewards for your newsletter fanbase (which we will discuss at the end of this course), as bonuses, and a whole bunch of other things!

 

Writers write; authors create; you are both. Do both.

Conclusion

 

As I said, you should keep writing. You must keep writing. If you want to improve, write.

 

Speaking of improving, in the next lesson we will look at a very important, crucial way how you can improve your writing skills. I’m pretty sure you could guess it, but you won’t.

 

Tune in soon for the rest of the course 🙂 We’re just about done!

Lesson #11: Passionate

Passionate

You most enjoy writing when you are passionate about it.

 

Welcome to Lesson #2 of Part 3! In the last lesson, we looked at how to make your writing a habit, and increase your production by doing that. The problem is, just because it’s a habit doesn’t mean you’ll enjoy it. And when you don’t enjoy your habits, they are all the more easier to break -something we don’t want to do.

 

So how do we make sure you keep enjoying the writing? You most enjoy writing when you are passionate about it. This is why you sometimes get that burning desire to write when you have a great idea for a book, or a story, or a scene. And when you feel that need to write, it becomes one of the most enjoyable things you could do.

 

Why does that feeling go away, though? Why aren’t you always excited about it?

 

Well, in this lesson we’ll look at 1) why that feeling goes away, 2) how to get that feeling back, and 3) how to keep that feeling once you get it.

Why You Lose It: Boredom

 

We all know that moment when you sit down at your keyboard, or you see your keyboard, or you think about your keyboard and it becomes like some terrible thing that should be locked away in prison. In that moment, you absolutely hate having to sit down and write.

 

Everybody feels this, some people more than others. What normally happens before that moment, though? What leads up to it and causes it? I would argue that the leading problem is… I can’t think of one word to describe it, so let me just talk about this condition.

 

Getting into a habit is a good thing, but getting stuck in your writing isn’t. You get to a point in a book that becomes like a wall. This happens with every single novel ever written, and some authors push through the wall while others don’t. You become bored with your book and your characters.

 

That’s why you stop writing. You get bored with what you’re working on.

 

And if you get bored, how can you expect the readers to be excited? What you’re writing is exactly what the reader will read. And if you’re bored about it, I promise they will be too.

 

So there’s our first problem: Boredom.

 

Why You Lose It: Distractions

 

This, also, is a huge reason why you lose the passion for writing. You become distracted by something else. Maybe it’s a TV that’s on, maybe it’s a song that’s stuck in your head, or maybe you’re just plain tired.

 

Whatever the distraction is, it clearly messes up your writing. You can tell this because when you sit down to write, your vision wanders elsewhere or your thoughts are taken far away from where they need to be. While having distractions is a big problem, it’s also not very hard to fix.

How to Fix It: Distractions

 

The best way to limit distractions is to change your place where you write. As you go through your writing career, you will certainly change where and when you write, but the most important thing is to limit distractions as much as possible. And if you notice some distractions, then change it.

 

Another way to un-distraction yourself is just putting your nose down and get to typing. You can’t always control how the noise-level is around you or get rid of all possible problems. But like anything, writing is a workout. It’s a mental workout, which means you have to seize control of your brain and get down to work. In the end, it’s just a mental thing.

 

The other problem we talked about was Boredom. This is a little trickier to fix, but let’s give it a shot.

How to Fix It: Boredom

 

When you get bored with your story, you need to give it an infusion of life. Now, I’m not talking about a major plot change or an entirely new character, although that could potentially work. There are many other things you could add that will help just as much and not cause you to drastically change your story. I’ll give you two examples from my own work.

 

Raymond Chandler famously said, “When in doubt, have a man come through the door with a gun.” So for one story where I’d lost track of my plot, I literally did that. I had some dude walk in with a gun and start shooting. And before I knew it, the story completely changed course on me. I threw my plot out the window, made a new one, and the story became much better than I could have hoped.

 

The other story I was having problems with required a much simpler help. All I did was add in a random snow storm, and this made the story seem better to me. I described the storm as best I could, and then the rest of the chapter and book felt easier to write. Even though the weather change had no real effect on the story, it helped me as an author.

 

These are just a couple things that really help. Changing the weather, adding an insignificant character, anything will help. All you have to do is make the story fun for you. If you enjoy writing it, the chance of the reader enjoying it skyrockets as well.

How to Keep It

 

I’ve come up with one tip for keeping the passion with your writing, and I think it’ll be very helpful to a lot of people.

 

Everything I’ve mentioned up to this point will help significantly. Getting rid of distractions, making your writing exciting for you, and any other ideas you come up with will help. But there’s something else I’ve found ever more helpful, and if you remember anything from the lesson remember this.

 

So you know how you get that burning desire, that great idea? Well, most people write until they can’t anymore when that happens. They burn up all that energy, and then they’re left with nothing. I think this is a terrible thing to do.

 

When you get a fantastic idea, you need to write until just before the end. You need to leave something to look forward to. If you’ve been excited to start writing a novel, put if off for a week with other work. I call it Positive Procrastination. Let me explain.

 

Using the example of the novel, here’s what you’d do. You have this novel you’re so excited to start, and you have this amazing idea for the opening scene or whatever. So Positive Procrastination would do this:

 

Put some points in for the first scene so that you remember your great idea for it.

Plot out the rest of the novel, and make a character chart to organize them however works best for you.

Go over the plot again and fine-tune it, making it better.

Go back and think of some more scenes or some more details about certain scenes.

Get yourself fired up everyday for writing, but never actually write the first chapter.

And then, in your moment of glory, start writing.

 

This keeps you happy and excited and thrilled to start again the next day. When you work on that first chapter, do part of it. Do the first half, then leave the rest for tomorrow. When you aren’t working on writing, you can start thinking about how you will promote your book. There’s always something helpful to procrastinate with.

Conclusion

 

So bottom line is you need to leave some of the excitement for tomorrow. Look forward to your writing session, instead of dreading it. If you follow these tips, you’ll find it changes everything.

 

Thanks so much for listening to this course and I hope it’s been helpful 🙂 Next up is the last lesson in this part, and we’ll go over how to NEVER STOP your writing career. Stay tuned!

 

Lesson #10- Habitual

Section 3: How to do the Writing

A book is a challenge for everyone. But challenges can be overcome.

Habitual

You’re an author. You write. So let’s write!

 

Welcome to Part 3 of my writing course! Over the last 5 lessons, we talked about the different parts of a book, and why each and every one is important. But what good does that do if you can’t motivate yourself to write the parts?

 

Well, that’s where this part comes in. I’ll give you tips on writing, how to keep yourself motivated, and if you follow them then hopefully the task of writing will come a lot easier to you.

 

Let’s not waste anytime. Get down to business, now, ya’ll.

Being Honest

 

First of all, let’s lay something down. Writing is hard. It’s difficult. It takes work, and it is work. You won’t always wanna do it. For some of you, you won’t want to do it most of the time.

 

So ask yourself a question. Are you dedicated to this? Are you willing to work? Is this something you want to spend time on and do?

 

The answer is yes. I know this because you’re taking this writing course. However you stumbled upon it, you’ve gotten to this part, to this lesson. And that shows you want this, and you want to work on this.

 

So you’re an author. You’re a writer. Even if you haven’t written a word yet, you’re an author. Don’t be ashamed to tell people that. I was, for a long, long time. People would ask, “What are your hobbies? What do you wanna be when you grow up?” and I’d just avoid the question when I should have said, “I’m already an author. And I write.”

 

You’re an author. You write. So let’s write!

Writing Time

 

There’s one HUGE thing that makes writing easier, and that’s making it a HABIT. (H and H, you see?)

 

It doesn’t take much to form a habit. Just finding a time of day is a good start. For me, I write in the evening and into the night. This is because it works well with my school and basketball schedule.

 

Take a moment to think about your own schedule. Where could you write? What time of day? If you’re having trouble finding gaps, then think about what you could cut out. Could you type some instead of watching that TV show? Or instead of taking that nap?

 

Yet another alternative is to split up your writing time. If you can’t write in a big chunk of two hours, then do a pair of one-hour sessions. One in the morning, one at night? Two other times? Lunch break and after work?

 

My point is that anybody can find time to write. You might have to give up things or shift things, but it’s all worth it in the end.

Writing Length

 

How do we measure the progress in your writing, though? How do we decide how long your sessions will be? What do we judge by?

 

Well, there are two main ways. First, you can go by words. Second, you go by time.

 

For instance, if you’re going by words, you would sit down and say, “I’m gonna write 1,000 words.” That sounds like a lot, but really isn’t. This lesson is probably 1,500 or 2,000. Once you finish with those 1,000, you put the computer/notebook/stone tablet down and walk away. (Some people write until they can’t anymore, but I’ll tell you why this is bad in the next lesson.)

 

The other method is by time, which is pretty easy. You sit down, set your clock for half an hour or however long you have to spare, and then you get going. Once your time is up, you quit.

 

I do a little bit of both when I write. Sometimes I’ll go until I finish a chapter, sometimes I’ll set a timer, and sometimes I go until I get so many words. Do whatever is comfortable for you. The most important thing is that you’re getting words on paper (or stone tablets).

Writing Habit

 

So there’s some help to make your writing a habit.

 

The other way is to find a spot to do it. For me, I go sit on a couch in the living room. Whatever works for you, though.

 

Now, if you’re trying to cram your writing into your day this won’t help as much. But there are little things you can do. Listen to certain music while you type, chew a certain type of gum, lots of stuff. If you do things the same while you write, it will seem familiar each time you go back and will become a habit.

Conclusion

 

So to make it a habit, you find a time and you find a place. If you can’t find a place, then make each writing session as similar as possible.

 

The number one goal in all of this is to get some words down. If you’re doing that, you’re great.

 

In the next lesson, we’ll go over another tip and talk about why writing until you can’t anymore is a bad, bad thing!

Lesson #9- Resolution

Resolution

Give it some thought and remember… this is the best part of the book

 

Welcome to the resolution of Part 2! It is all about the story… Resolution. See, I’m so smart.

 

The Resolution is the ending of the book, just like this is the ending of Part 2. You probably know that. Instead of saying “Resolution,” I’m just gonna say the end of the book because that’s easier and I’m in a very simple-minded mood.

 

There are a few key things to remember when you write the end of the book.

 

First, you have to make it memorable, for a couple reasons. If you’re writing a series, then there is a very good quote you should remember. It says that the first chapter is how you sell that book, the last chapter is how you sell the next one. I think that’s pretty true. Even if you’re not writing a series, making the ending forgetful will just ruin a perfect book (because after this course, yours is perfect of course. Shhh.)

 

Secondly, you should give your main character a fitting farewell. They’ve been the apple of your reader’s eye for the entire book -or even series- and so the reader certainly wants to see them one last time. One more tear-jerking scene, and there you go. A great ending.

 

There are other things to keep in mind as you write, but these two are the most important and are the basic needs. We will go into each more in-depth.

 

Memorable

 

What are the things you remember most about a book? The first chapter possibly. The climax, for sure. And most times, also the Resolution.

 

The ending of a book is what leaves the reader with a feeling. They’ll feel emotions when they close those covers (or run out of pages to swipe). Your job as the author is to make it a good one.

 

If you’ve seen many movies or read many books, you probably can tell there is a pattern in stories. The ending is usually emotional or foreshadows something else, especially in series. However, there is a catch.

 

There are very, very few exceptions. In almost every ending, there has to be a wrap-up of the story. The end is what makes the story a complete one. You know how they say a sentence has to be a complete thought? Well, a book has to be a complete story. Even if it’s in a series, each book needs to be a complete idea. For example, if someone picked up Book 3 of the Harry Potter series and read it, they would understand the basic themes of the book. Sure, some parts would be confusing and some names, but overall they would understand.

Fitting Farewell

 

While we’re on the topic of the Harry Potter books, let me say that they are a great example of this concept. Giving your characters a “Fitting Farewell” at the end of every book is a very important, sometimes forgotten task.

 

At the end of each book, Harry Potter and company ride the train away from Hogwarts. They depart for the summer from each other, just as they were leaving us until we picked up the next book. Not only that, but each final chapter was written with care and lots of thought, because the author knew if she entertained us with the last part of that book, we would buy the next one.

 

Giving your character a good final scene is tricky. It all depends on you -the author- and your creation -the main character- because each of you will influence it. Some characters should be given a “ride into the sunset” scene. Others are better off with a quick scene where they just disappear. And still others require different things. It all depends.

 

Conclusion

 

These are the two basic needs for an ending. Each one depends on you and what your story requires.

 

Give it some thought and remember… this is the best part of the book. As you give the reader that emotional and fulfilling ending, you get the same for yourself.

 

Come back next time to see Part 3 of this writing course! Over the next 3 weeks, I’ll give you very helpful, well-proven ideas for how to keep yourself motivated and exciting about writing!

 

We’ll call this next part… How to do the Writing.

Lesson #8- Falling Action

Falling Action

Falling Action is one of the best places to develop your characters and to give your readers that satisfied feeling. But don’t let things get boring! Give them a chapter or two of rest, then get to work. Next up you’ll be writing another Climax or you might be…

 

Wrapping up the novel!

 

Welcome to Lesson #4 of Part 2!

 

On this fine day, we will review how to successfully and splendidly begin the sad process of wrapping up a story. (I say sad because you will definitely miss it! Which is why you write another one, of course).

 

There are many important things to remember with this section of the book. Although it’s only a chapter or two long, it can leave a very memorable impact on the reader, so let’s make sure we do it right! To figure out how, read onwards brave soldier.

What is Falling Action?

 

Falling Action is the area of the plot that comes after the Climax. After the big, emotional, heavy, life-changing experience you just gave the reader, it’s a step back and a breath of fresh air. Everything calms down a bit, and we some reflections and reactions to the changes.

 

Some people say that Falling Action leads to the end of the story (a.k.a. the Resolution). Those are the same people, however, who tell you there is only one Climax. Because, after all, if there’s one Climax then the only place for Falling Action to lead is to the end.

 

However, as we believe there are multiple Climax scenes, there can be multiple Falling Action scenes and so of course they don’t have to lead to the end!

 

No matter where it’s at in the story, the Falling Action part will do a couple things.

 

Firstly, it will show who’s still alive. Like seriously. Sometimes those Climax scenes are crazy, so the Falling Action is like a “head? check. toes? check. breathing? check” time. We know who is alive, who is dead, and who wants to be dead.

 

Secondly, it shows how the characters react to whatever changes they just went through. Sometimes, these reactions will lead us into another Rising Action/Climax/Falling Action cycle. Or, similarly, they will discover a new piece of information and realize the battle isn’t over!

 

Thirdly, it will give the characters even more depth. There’s nothing that develops characters better than their reactions to a crisis. And your Climax scene was a crisis. So how they respond and act after it -in the Falling Action- will show a lot about who they truly are.

 

Lastly, it gives the reader a moment to think. Just as the characters will probably be doing some hard soul-searching (if they’re alive), the reader will also be doing some thoughtful processing of the events (if they too are alive. If not, you’re a mad genius.)

When does it start and end?

 

The Falling Action begins right after the Climax and continues until another Rising Action scene comes up or the story’s end begins in the Resolution.

How do I make it good?

 

The keys to making a part of the story good is understanding what it’s about, and what makes it unique. So, point-by-point, we’ll go over what the Falling Action scene really is and how we can make them good.

 

1- Who’s Alive?

 

Make it clear for the readers who is alive or dead. If you want the readers to think somebody’s dead, have a mourning scene. If you want the reader to know somebody’s alive, have him talk or be talked about. It’s crucial in a story to know what’s going on, so knowing who’s alive is pretty much a given.

 

2- Reactions

 

These reactions should be relatable for the reader, and emotional as appropriate. What I mean is that if they stubbed a toe, they don’t need to be on the ground weeping for days. But if one of their friends died, then heck yeah they’re gonna cry! Just use reason for this part. You should know how somebody will react. If you don’t, it’s probably not relatable enough.

 

This goes more for Fantasy stories, but if a character is thinking about what happened, don’t throw in a bunch of fancy, big words or names that only work for that story. When trying to relate to readers, use universal themes, not your story’s.

 

*Example*

 

Somebody just died in a battle. It’s the day after, and they’re burying him. One character is remembering his life.

 

“Sir Samuel of Jornsburg was a brave soldier in the service of our king. His service and skill with a blade was unmatched by any. It took a hundred arrows to kill him and to pierce his sides, until the blood flowed like a waterfall from his body’s many cuts.” The man bowed his head. “Such a warrior may never be seen again.”

 

All that may be true, but we can’t relate much. It comes across as too formal. Try this instead:

 

“Samuel was a brave man. He gave me everything: His time, his weapons, and at the end his life. I’ll never forget all the sacrifices he made for me.” The man bowed his head to hide the tears. “Even in death, he was a better man than any. He was a father to me. I hope I can honor him in my own life.”

 

*Example Ended*

 

3- Character Depth

 

After the Climax is fertile ground for character development. It’s almost like a new start on the story. You can show as much as you like about your characters through what they do, what they say, and how they act.


Take the example above, with the dead guy. The first person comes across as pompous and proud. The second seems more humble and emotional. I’m sure you relate more with the second, unless you’re a billionaire or something. (If you are, then why haven’t you bought my other books? Huh? Come on, Bill Gates).

 

Really put some effort into this. Making your characters more full and more rounded is the number one best way to make your book better. Right here is your chance.

 

4- Readers Thinking.

 

So, here’s the truth. After the Climax the reader is either gonna be looking to the end of the book, or to the next Climax scene. Give them a break for a chapter or two, but then get the story rushing again. It’s time for more battles or -in most cases- it’s time to wrap up this amazing novel you’ve penned. (Hint: next lesson).

What should happen to the characters?

 

How many characters do you kill? Well, that’s a hard choice. Do what’s best for your story. Don’t be afraid to push and break the boundaries. We’re gonna be unique, not like everybody. If you wanna kill everybody, then go for it.

 

At the same time, remember how important characters are to the story. They are what attach your reader. So, if you cut off all the attachments… you may lose a reader.

 

Give it some thought. Maybe instead of killing you can just wound one, or give him/her an emotional scar. (Scars are a very good way to develop your characters, also. There’s a certain mystery to them that is unlike anything else. This is true with both physical and emotional scars.)

Conclusion

 

Falling Action is one of the best places to develop your characters and to give your readers that satisfied feeling. But don’t let things get boring! Give them a chapter or two of rest, then get to work. Next up you’ll be writing another Climax or you might be…

 

Wrapping up the novel! So, therefore, you ought to go forwards to the next lesson where we will cover: Resolution.

 

See you there next time!

Lesson #7- Climax

Climax

Oftentimes, readers talk more about a book they hated than one they love. Whether they love or hate yours depends a lot on the Climax.

Welcome to Lesson #3 of Part 2! In this particular study, we will review the center of your novel: Climax.

 

The Climax is the most memorable part of the book, most times. It’s very important for you as an author. If the buildup is amazing and the Climax is a total letdown, then you know they’ll be some less-than-positive reviews. That’s one thing readers absolutely detest: a letdown.

 

I’m sure you’ve read a book that promised so much, and failed to deliver on the promise. What’d you feel? Mad? Disappointed? That’s what you don’t want your reader to feel. For sure, for sure.

What is the Climax?

 

It is one of the most memorable parts in the book, mainly because it is the peak of emotions. The Climax is where everything comes together and there’s a showdown. The heroes fight the villains, there’s lots of drama, and eventually somebody wins.

 

There’s a couple things that are very important to remember about the Climax:

 

1- It can have/be a plot twist. The Climax should be unpredictable. While the reader will probably know the location, they won’t know exactly what happens. They should be wondering, “How’s the good guy gonna win this?” and then do it in a way that’s different from what they’d expect.

 

2- Characters can die. This is one way to do a major plot twist. Have somebody die. Normally, it’s not the main character. Although I did that once in one of my books, and nobody sent hate mail, so it can work! Like most areas of writing, do write what is right for what you write. Your story decides, not the readers.

 

3- It should be captivating

What’s a good Climax do?

 

A good Climax should keep the reader’s attention for the entire time. The rising tension leading to it will grab them, but the Climax has to deliver on the promise you’ve made. And you have made a promise. You’ve said, “This Climax is worth a couple dollars and lots of hours to read.” If you let the reader down… they’ll be wanting their time and money back.

 

Often, the Climax is the most memorable part in the book. It comes near the end, unless there are multiple Climaxes. The last one, however, is the most important, because things will finally be resolved after it.

 

It’s okay to leave questions at the end, especially if you’re going to write a sequel. However, the Climax should always give the reader a sense of completion and fulfillment. If you don’t give them what they want -and expect- you’ll regret it.

 

If you’re writing Fantasy, they want an awesome battle. If you’re writing Horror, they want some blood-chilling good-versus-evil scene. There’s a cliche what’s expected for every genre. This is one of the cliches you’d do well to listen to.

 

One way to make the Climax exciting is a plot twist. Right before the buildup, you throw a wrench in the story. You shock the reader, and they’re thinking, “Oh my gosh! Oh my gosh! What now??” And then you slowly, evilly, brilliantly build up to the Climax.


If your Climax is amazing, the chapters after can suck. If your Climax is terrible, you’re losing a reader. Oftentimes, readers talk more about a book they hated than one they love. Whether they love or hate yours depends a lot on the Climax.

Can there only be one?

As I mentioned earlier, the final Climax is the most important part. But how can there be a “final” one if there are none before it?

 

Well, some would argue that a Climax is “the point of highest emotional intensity in a story” (said my English teacher.) In other words, the most exciting part. But I think there can be multiple most exciting parts, and thus there can be multiple Climax scenes.

 

In one of the books I wrote, there is a scene about three-fourths of the way in that could be the Climax. However, I wanted the book to be longer so I didn’t end the story there. I added another 20,000 words. Which meant I needed another Climax. One plus one equals two.

 

Besides my own work as an example, there are plenty of novels and movies with two or more scenes of high excitement. Most common is in action movies, and also in Fantasy novels. There’s no limit to the amount of these scenes, but obviously keep them low in number.

 

Never ever try to force a Climax scene. It’ll just work out for itself. If the excitement starts building, then awesome! You’ve got one. But that might be all you need. This isn’t something to think about as you write. Just go back and look over the story once you’re done.

Conclusion

 

A Climax is important. It’s not hard to do, but it’s easy to mess up. You have to captivate, you have to entertain, and you have to leave a lasting impact. If you’re looking for “word of mouth” sales, then this is the road to take: Improve your Climax.

 

I hope this lesson has been very helpful for you. Come back next week as we descend down Plot Mountain and go over Falling Action!

 

I’ll see you there. Wink wink.

Lesson #6- Rising Action

Rising Action

After the inciting incident(s), you’ll want to keep the action high and the stakes higher.

 

Welcome to Lesson #2 of Part #2! Forgive me if I’m a bit out of it today, but I just had four wisdom teeth removed and I’m a bit loopy/in pain. So enjoy the ride.

 

We will study Rising Action in this lesson, which is the second part of a book plot. Seems all the two’s are lining up, eh?

 

In this study, we’ll see what causes Rising Action (sets it off), what importance it has in the story, how to make it more captivating for your reader, and much more! (I think I say that everytime. And get used to lots of parentheses in this lesson. Blame the medicine.)

 

What is Rising Action?

 

In our plot, Rising Action is the area between the Beginning and the Climax. It takes what we showed the readers (characters, settings) and gets them into a real story. If you’re using the triangle-looking plot structure, then it’s the left side that points up.

 

The purpose of Rising Action is to transport our readers to the Climax. That’s the main goal, anyways. In this are a couple hidden agendas for us, the author.

Agenda #1- Character Building

 

First of all, you want to expand on your characters. This is the time when they become life-like and you keep trying to make the reader like them. Make the reader enjoy them, and the reader will be very emotional when you kill them… I mean, when they get into fights and stuff.

 

One point to remember is the title itself: Rising Action. So stuff has to actually happen. They can’t just be sitting around and then boom! a big event happens. That might be how it works in real life, but it’s not the same in fiction. And people don’t read fiction to relive their life.

 

When all this stuff happens, your characters will react, and their reactions show their personality. If somebody cusses them out, how they respond will show something.

 

Do they punch them? Then that gives us the idea they’re hot-tempered.

 

Do they step forward and try to evangelize the person? Then that gives us the idea they’re religious in some form or another.

 

Do they run away? Shy or afraid or don’t like confrontation.

 

Agenda #2- Action/Reaction

 

I think it’s one of Newton’s Laws that says For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction. Let’s ignore a couple words and make it this. For every action, there is a reaction.

 

Every time something happens, something else will happen in response. That response, that consequence, that effect is what keeps the story moving forward.

 

This is one area where plot twists can get thrown in. If you do that, it causes a major reaction because it’s a major or at least unexpected change. That’s a good thing. Keep the readers on their tippy toes.

 

I’ve read in some places that every event, action, or dialogue should have the sole purpose to move the story forwards. I disagree. There are other things you can do that don’t necessarily get you closer to the outcome.

 

Let’s take dialogue for example. It can be used to:

 

1- Move the story forward.

Dialogue is a great way to push events closer to the Climax and eventually the ending. It keeps the reader zooming through your words and devouring them.

 

2- Develop a character.

One of the best uses for dialogue is to show more about a character. There’s the action/reaction thing we mentioned earlier, but that’s not at all. How a character talks shows how they view the world, and how they view the world shows what type of person they are. A great way to do this is conversation -it shows traits about all characters talking.

 

3- Describe something

One of the best ways to describe a setting is to have the character talk. They will have some type of response to whatever they’re viewing, and this shows both what they are like and where they are. It’s great!

 

This was just one example, using dialogue. In reality, there are a plethora of ways to use dialogue, actions, and all parts of a story. They can make the story deeper without pushing it farther.

Agenda #3- Intensify

 

As you go through writing your Rising Action, the story should gradually get more intense. At the beginning, it’s just one event, something unusual. This is called the Inciting Incident (by my teacher anyways). It’s really just the start of the story.

 

This incident can be anything. In an alien invasion novel, it’d be when the aliens come. Or maybe when the alien spaceship is sighted.

 

The beginning of a book is a complicated thing. Sometimes, the Rising Action is just a series of events that leads to the Climax, and these events start very close to the beginning of your book. The Beginning section can be made of a few sentences, even. Or it could even be an exciting event itself!

 

There are plenty of ways to make this happen. As your story gets more intense, the reader will become captivated. They’ll be staying up ‘till midnight reading, and grabbing your book first thing in the morning. This section, the Rising Action, is when readers are least likely to put down your book, but also most likely. If it doesn’t keep them guessing and interesting, they’ll give up. They’ll leave.

 

While the Beginning is what gets them reading, this section keeps them reading. Because if they enjoy the Rising Action, they’ll get to the Climax, and then of course they’ll want to know how it ends!

Conclusion

 

At the end of the day, the Rising Action should keep the readers interested. After the inciting incident(s), you’ll want to keep the action high and the stakes higher.

 

Plot twists are a great way to throw a surprise in there. If the reader can guess what’s going to happen next, the story then becomes bland. Even if they know the good guys will win, it should seem impossible. If they are thinking, “I know the good guys are gonna beat the bad guys, but I have no idea how they can do it,” then you’ve done your job.

 

In the next lesson, we’ll talk about the most emotional, most powerful, most difficult part of the book: The Climax.

 

See you there, and hopefully I’ll be able to feel my face by then!