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David Farland's Writing Tips

I’ve had a number of readers ask about the Amazon-Hachette debate.
KamiMMcArthur - 7/25/2014
An odd thing happened recently. A friend of mine, Matt Harrill, was contacted by a reviewer for a major newspaper a few weeks ago, who said that a rave review would be coming out in the paper shortly, but the review was never published.
KamiMMcArthur - 7/21/2014
When you write a story, it may seem to be about a character, in a particular setting, struggling to overcome a problem. But if that is all that your story is really about, it will fail.
KamiMMcArthur - 7/14/2014
Many new authors feel torn between two loves. They might ask, “Should I write science fiction, or should I focus more on young adult novels? Which way should I go?" There are three answers to this question.
KamiMMcArthur - 7/11/2014
Sometimes as writers, when we give writing advice, we often give advice by telling “How I write” instead of “How to write.” This idea came to me strongly after I spoke on a podcast with the good folks at Writing Excuses.
KamiMMcArthur - 7/8/2014
It's important to understand who you are as an author, and what it is that you want to achieve
KamiMMcArthur - 7/3/2014
Sometimes, readers fall in love with a writer’s characters, and they want to simply read about those characters throughout the rest of the series. How do you keep writing about the same characters without the story going stale?
KamiMMcArthur - 7/2/2014
Creating a series with persistent characters in a persistent world.
KamiMMcArthur - 6/30/2014
Last week, I met a writer who had an extremely powerful editor interested in his work and didn’t realize that she’d just struck gold. Another author felt excited about “meeting an editor,” without realizing that he was talking to the wrong kind of editor. So let’s look at some different types of book editors.
KamiMMcArthur - 6/27/2014
I got an email the other day from an unhappy writer who said that editors aren’t really editors anymore. He said that they’re just “choosers,” picking stories that need the least amount of fixing. Nobody edits.
KamiMMcArthur - 6/25/2014
In judging some stories for a contest recently, I had to ask myself some tough questions. I found one story where I loved the concept but the author was obviously new. He had minor typos, improper verbs, and so on. The question was, “Do I send this story on or not?”
KamiMMcArthur - 6/23/2014
The best dystopian settings arouse realistic fears in the reader. In other words, the author studies the world as it is today, and very often will look at social conditions and consider, “If this goes on, how will the world change?”
KamiMMcArthur - 6/20/2014
A lot of people are wondering why dystopias are so popular. They haven’t realized that they’ve always been popular.
KamiMMcArthur - 6/18/2014
When you begin to write a series, there are a number of strategies that you can adopt. Each has some advantages, and each has some pitfalls.
KamiMMcArthur - 6/17/2014
I promised to talk some more about how to write a series of books.
When you put out the first novel in your series, you’re trying to get two things—a large number of sales, and a high velocity.
KamiMMcArthur - 6/16/2014
When you write a series, under ideal conditions you can get some traction with your books and build toward hitting the New York Times Bestseller’s list.
KamiMMcArthur - 6/13/2014
Every week or two, someone asks me whether their first novel should be a standalone or if they should begin a series.
KamiMMcArthur - 6/11/2014
When you are writing a novel, you often want to hook your reader into reading the next chapter. A good chapter title can do that.
KamiMMcArthur - 6/9/2014
Today's Kick is in a bit of a different format. I do online conferences with writers who are taking workshops from me. During the conferences they can ask me questions.
KamiMMcArthur - 6/6/2014
Here is the opening to a story. See if you can figure out why this one goes into the trash.
KamiMMcArthur - 6/5/2014
Mysterious Galaxy Books