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Ten Tips to Better Literary Fiction

  1. Show don’t tell, EXCEPT in the epiphany
  2. REMOVE all adverbs and adjectives
  3. Give each sentence (paragraph, page, chapter) an ARC
  4. Character IS plot
  5. Explicate the DESIRES of each character
  6. Break the inner CORE of each character and create a NEW core
  7. Describe how events lead each character to lose their IDENTITY (and create a new one)
  8. Create PUSH-PULL tension between the characters on every page
  9. Engage all five SENSES in the reader (what does the scene smell/taste/feel/sound of?)
  10. Use CONVERSATION, not description to illuminate the scene
  11. BONUS TIP: THROW OUT the first and last chapter of any novel; the first and last two pages of any short story


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