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Better Fiction Guides

Research – and how not to do it! by Fiona Gartland
Posted by Fiona Gartland in , .

Research is an essential part of writing fiction. It lends authenticity to a creation which is otherwise entirely fabricated. And readers, though they are prepared to suspend their disbelief in...

The Myth of the Debut Novel by Kate Simants
Posted by Kate Simants in , .

Lock Me In, my debut novel, is a thriller about a young woman who suffers from a psychological condition in which she dissociates from reality. She’ll become a different person...

Researching Historical Novels by Pam Lecky
Posted by Pam Lecky in , .

For anyone writing historical fiction, the research required can be daunting. Fortunately, I love it, and over the years my collection of reference books has grown. The genre requires a...

Researching a Location: 55 by James Delargy
Posted by James Delargy in , .

So you’ve decided that your book will not be based in the country where you usually live. In fact you have never lived there. Nothing wrong with that. It might...

On Language and Dialect: Bearmouth by Liz Hyder
Posted by Liz Hyder in , .

When I was a child, one of my aspirations was to become an Egyptologist, to explore the wild desert sands on a camel, to read hieroglyphs and make exciting new...

How to Edit an Award-Winning Short Story by Mslexia

Ernest Hemingway once said ‘The only kind of writing is rewriting’, and if you’re planning to enter the Mslexia 2019 Short Story Competition, chances are you’ll soon be moving on...

Fact Into Fiction: How To Make Research Resonate by Ausma Zehanat Khan
Posted by Ausma Zehanat Khan in , .

When you write a story that closely follows real life events, it’s important to ground your book in the facts without letting those facts overwhelm the emotional connection you hope...

Listening to Music by Lucy Sweeney Byrne
Posted by Lucy Sweeney Byrne in , .

When I hear music, I see images; images of places I have listened to the music before, coming in flashes, trains and woods and streets, or the faces of people...

Creating Worlds in Speculative Fiction by Nathaniel Webb
Posted by Nathaniel Webb in , .

Thermodynamics for Airship Pilots At the Imperial Wartime Academy of Airship Pilotage in Aniara, there’s a question the instructors like to spring on first-year students. “You’re the navigator,” the teacher...

Researching a New Location: The Hiding Game by Louse Phillips
Posted by Louse Phillips in , .

As a writer of psychological crime thrillers, I often find myself in unique situations for research, like chatting to off-duty hostage negotiators over a chicken burger in a fast food...