The Writer’s Tool Shed

Real Writing Stories #3: My Writing Day – Caroline Barden

Real Writing Stories returns with a fresh instalment. Continuing with the series My Writing Day, I'm delighted to introduce friend and fellow writer, Caroline Barden. Caroline is a writer and professional proof-reader. Her work has featured in The Guardian newspaper and recently she was victorious in the Writing on the Wall flash fiction competition. If… Continue reading Real Writing Stories #3: My Writing Day – Caroline Barden

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A fantasy writer’s guide to … Castles and Keeps: part one

We've lost more than we know, but what we have retained has inspired some, if not all, of the greatest fantasy stories in one way or another. Taking the time to do a bit of research on what you're writing about will empower your storytelling and, hopefully, enthral your readers. Today we're besieging the fortifications which dominated the Middle Ages, and of course which feature in our beloved fantasy genre.

Effective marketing methods for writers

If you’d like more writing tips you can get my eBook, This Craft We Call Writing: Volume One, for free by completing the form below. Inside you’ll find over 150 pages covering everything from dialogue, characterisation, prose and plotting, to world-building, writing fight scenes, viewpoint, and much more!   Marketing is one of the trickiest… Continue reading Effective marketing methods for writers

Real Writing Stories #2: My Writing Day – Forest Wells

Real Writing Stories returns for its second installment. This week, with the help of writer Forest Wells, I'm launching a new weekly feature called My Writing Day. Readers of The Guardian newspaper may have seen this before. A writer shares their average writing day—the process, the distractions, the strife, the achievements. The Guardian however looks at the writing days of more well-known writers only. They're very insightful and inspirational pieces, but I think the stories of other writers at different stages in their journeys can be more interesting and relatable.

Time Management (infographic)

Not so long ago I looked at the bastard that is procrastination. After reading it, an excellent writer and blogger by the name of Jack Milgram got in touch. Jack has very kindly put together an infographic to help with time management. I'm sure we all feel we could use a few extra hours in the day. Well, Jack's infographic may just be what you need.

The architecture of suspense

We've all read that novel where at some point, usually around the middle, you put it down and never pick it up again. Suspense is the glue that binds your reader’s hands to the pages, that makes them race to the end to see the conclusion. To quote Sol Stein, suspense is "the most essential ingredient in plotting."

Creative writing lectures

If you’d like more writing tips you can get my eBook, This Craft We Call Writing: Volume One, for free by completing the form below. Inside you’ll find over 150 pages covering everything from dialogue, characterisation, prose and plotting, to world-building, writing fight scenes, viewpoint, and much more! With NaNoWriMo a week in it's just… Continue reading Creative writing lectures

Real Writing Stories: Part One

The stories of fellow writers really inspire me to keep bashing away at the keyboard. Learning about other people's journeys, the difficulties they've encountered and overcome, their unwaivering passion for writing, can help me get through days when I feel like giving up.

The Pigeon Catchers

November is upon us and the cold of winter is beginning to bite. Reading is perhaps one of the best pass times when it's too chilly to venture outside. So to keep you occupied, I'm delighted to be able to bring you a new story of mine, The Pigeon Catchers, which has today been published by Far Horizons in their quarterly ezine.

A quick guide to naming your fantasy characters

I come across a lot of posts on social media asking about naming characters, particularly in the fantasy genre. How different should they be to real world names? Should I throw an apostrophe in the middle to make it sound more fantasyish? With NaNoWriMo kicking off tomorrow you don’t want to be wasting time thinking of names. So here’s a quick guide to help you out.