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Notes on the Craft

Concrete, practical methods for improving your writing.
Chuck Palahniuk

36 Writing Essays by Chuck Palahniuk

36 exclusive craft essays on writing you won't find anywhere else online. The knowledge here is equivalent to what you'd get in an MFA program.
Gayle Towell

Edit My Paragraph!

In: Rewriting
This column illustrates editing techniques by offering detailed edits to paragraphs submitted by the readers.
Christine J. Schmidt

How To Break Up With Your First Draft

In: Rewriting
You're staying with your first draft for all the wrong reasons. It's time to break free and get to the story you were always meant to write!
Richard Thomas

Storyville: Putting Your Life in Your Fiction

Some helpful tips for working your life into your fiction.
Leah Dearborn

Library Love: America’s Athenaeums

In: Research
Today's athenaeums are based on a four-thousand-year-old idea: that reading can be a social activity, and one that is necessary for the advancement of civilization.
Nathan Scalia

It's Made Of SCIENCE: The Vacuum Of Space

In: Research
Everything you need to know about the vacuum of space, its effects on the human body, and SCIENCE!
Chuck Palahniuk

Chuck Palahniuk's 2014 Essays

Chuck surprised us all with a new batch of essays for 2014! There is no exact timeline on how these will roll out, so just keep an eye on the site.
Leah Dearborn

The Eternal Duel: A History of Commas

In: Grammar
The Oxford comma has been a highly divisive issue within the literary community for many years. But how did it come to be this way, and is one side actually correct?
Richard Thomas

Storyville: Kill Your Darlings—How 'Game of Thrones' Can Change Your Writing

We can learn some valuable lessons about plotting, characters, and expectations from watching (or reading) 'Game of Thrones.'
Leah Dearborn

Is Print the Popular Kid Again?

In: Research
Print was supposed to die with the new millennium, but a number of digital publications have recently opted to go against the grain and begin production of hard copy editions.
Taylor Houston

Ask the Grammarian: How "snuck" sneaked in...

In: Grammar
How "snuck" sneaked into the English language and we totally let it.
Nathan Scalia

It's Made Of SCIENCE: Guns And Bullet Ballistics

Everything you need to know about firearms, the physics of bullets, and SCIENCE!
Leah Dearborn

Shelving a Fear of Romance

In: Theme
Trade romance sales make up the largest share of the U.S. consumer book market, yet they carry a lot of negative associations. Does romance deserve a second chance?
Richard Thomas

Storyville: Three Essential Books On Writing

Three essential books on writing by Stephen King, Donald Maas and Jeff VanderMeer.
Robbie Blair

Overcoming Object Love: How to Write Female Leads Who Are People

In: Character
"Object love" is a painfully common writing disease that leads us to write two-dimensional women who are more object than person. This article explores how you can overcome the sickness.
Taylor Houston

Ask the Grammarian with Taylor Houston - Now Taking Your Questions

In: Grammar
I'm like your personal editor, so ask me a grammar or usage question!
BH Shepherd

Beautiful Void: The Importance of Implied Narrative

Details are important, but so is what you leave out. A look at the subtle art of untold stories.
Taylor Houston

UPDATED WITH WINNER - LitReactor's Flash Fiction Smackdown: January Edition

In: Plot
New year, new rules. This month, write about something "new" in 14 words or less.
Karina Wilson

Screenwriting: Speed Dating The First Five Pages

In: Voice
A screenplay should always have the reader at 'Hello'. Find out how techniques developed chatting up strangers at speed dating events can make your first five pages sing.
Richard Thomas

Storyville: How to Write a Book Review

In: Research
Some tips on how to write a compelling book review.
Troy Farah

How Journalism Can Help Polish Your Fiction

In: Workshop
Journalism is an often ignored way to develop strong writing skills. When applied to fiction, the results can be outstanding. Just ask authors like Hemingway and Palahniuk, who were once reporters.
Nathan Scalia

It's Made Of SCIENCE: Aliens

Everything you need to know about aliens, the biological definition of life, and SCIENCE!
Troy Farah

Dystropia: No More Mr. Vice Guy!

In: Cliche
In this month's Dystropia, we look at Mr. Vice Guy, a character with obvious flaws, addictions and weaknesses. Mr. Vice guy is more dimensional, sure, but as you'll learn, it's not always that easy.
Richard Thomas

Storyville: Editor Interviews—Shock Totem, Shimmer, and The Dark

In: Research
Some quick questions with three editors of contemporary, dark fiction.