Joshua Isard

Engage Your Readers By Putting Them To Work

As writers, then, we want to ask our readers to do the right kind of work, the kind that helps them engage with our stories as much as possible.
Richard Thomas

Storyville: Creating Tension in Your Fiction

How do you create tension in your fiction? Here are some tips.

Make Your Characters More Interesting With Lies

Ask yourself: When's the last time I had one of my characters tell a real whopper?
Richard Thomas

Storyville: Horror Story vs. Horror Novel

How do you know if your horror project is a story, novella, or novel? Some quick tips.
Jeff Noon

Through the Labyrinth: Plotting the Story

Part 8 of Jeff's 10 part series on the writing of his new novel, "A Man of Shadows."
Fred Venturini

Brace Yourselves: A Breakdown of the Game of Thrones Pilot, "Winter is Coming"

The Game of Thrones pilot, "Winter is Coming," packs a sprawling, fantasy epic into a tight sixty-one minutes featuring distinct and interesting settings and characters.
Christoph Paul

Seeing the Page Like A Quarterback Sees the Field

Using football metaphors, I compare how being a successful QB is similar to being a good writer.

Story Structure: The Magic Bullet that Nearly Killed Me

Matthew Quirk, author of the newly-released 'Dead Man Switch,' talks about the secret code of storytelling he learned from screenwriting.
Alex Segura

Open to Inspiration: How Your Own Family History Can Feed Your Fiction

Acclaimed crime/mystery novelist Alex Segura talks about finding inspiration for his next book in his own family's Cuban history.

Making A Murderer: How Good Storytelling Made It So Damn Compelling

'Making A Murderer' was a fascinating story, but good storytelling made it truly excellent.
Richard Thomas

Storyville: How to Write Flash Fiction

Tips and tricks for writing powerful flash fiction.
Raine Winters

Five Situations Horror Characters Get Themselves Into (and What Would Happen in Real Life)

Among the lessons you will learn: Karma's a bitch, don't piss off serial killers, and never under any circumstances enter a basement.
Raine Winters

The Age of the Unoriginal Idea

In an era where every story is recycled, how do we as writers strive for originality?
Richard Thomas

Storyville: 10 Ways to Fool Your Readers

Ten tips for the best ways to fool your readers.
George Cotronis

Brainstorm Your Next Novel with Fiasco - Part 2

We come back to our work in progress, ready to fill in some details about our fictional town and its inhabitants.
Max Booth III

Abandoning Linearity and Enabling Shuffle Mode: How to Write Out of Sequence

By writing out of sequence, you no longer have to force yourself to write the boring bits. You are always writing the fun chapters. The scenes that remind you why you’re a writer in the first place.
George Cotronis

Brainstorm Your Next Novel with Fiasco - Part 1

Having some trouble with your novel WIP? Not sure how to connect the dots or how to fill out that character roster? I’m here to help.
Robbie Blair

8 Ways to Outline a Novel

I go into several methods for outlining longer pieces, including free-write summary, skeletal summaries, "snowflake" summaries, visual outlines, and more.
Richard Thomas

Storyville: Writing a Novel Without Plotting it Out

Tips on how to write a novel without plotting it out.
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.'
Richard Thomas

Storyville: Three Essential Books On Writing

Three essential books on writing by Stephen King, Donald Maas and Jeff VanderMeer.
Taylor Houston

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

New year, new rules. This month, write about something "new" in 14 words or less.