Category Archives: Plotting

How To Keep Tension Rising, and Rising, and Rising in Your Book | Fiction School Podcast #28

How To Keep Tension Rising, and Rising, and Rising in Your Book | Fiction School Podcast #28

This week, we’re answering a voicemail from Bonnie J. Rough, who actually made a guest appearance on Episode 25. Her question was a great one that many writers (including us) struggle with: how do you make sure you keep the tension rising in the right way over the course of a book or long narrative?… Continue Reading

Writing Sherlock Holmes, Researching Smarter, and Having a Career as a Writer with special guest Laurie R. King | Fiction School Podcast #26

Writing Sherlock Holmes, Researching Smarter, and Having a Career as a Writer with special guest Laurie R. King | Fiction School Podcast #26

You know how, when you ask some writers for advice, they’ll say something like “Apply the seat of the pants to the seat of the chair,” and it’s so unhelpful it’s kind of infuriating? But then you ask other writers, and they give you actual advice that blows your mind? Changes your writing strategy? Gives… Continue Reading

How To Revise a Big Ol’ Book-Length Project: Advice From Over a Dozen Writers | Fiction School Podcast #25

How To Revise a Big Ol’ Book-Length Project: Advice From Over a Dozen Writers | Fiction School Podcast #25

Sometimes, you just can’t stop the good times from rollin’.  Like this week, many special things happened.  First, Tommy’s pleading and begging for all these weeks finally came into fruition.  It happened.   We. Got. A. Voicemail. It was a great question from a listener, Joseph, and we knew we wanted to do a show… Continue Reading

Tips and Tricks for Writing Action Scenes, from Baseball to Face-Punching to Maritime Madness | Fiction School Podcast #24

Tips and Tricks for Writing Action Scenes, from Baseball to Face-Punching to Maritime Madness | Fiction School Podcast #24

Anton Chekhov said, “If you say in the first chapter that there is a rifle hanging on the wall, in the second or third chapter it absolutely must go off.” Well, Fiction School says if there’s a fist in Chapter 1, it better punch somebody in the mouth by Chapter 3.  If there are fancy… Continue Reading

Writing Strategies with Point of View and Tense | Fiction School Podcast #22

Writing Strategies with Point of View and Tense | Fiction School Podcast #22

We got a great question from our contact page from a listener, Rich, so we decided to do a show on it.  Here’s Rich’s email to us: Hi All, Love the show; I download the (free!) podcasts from iTunes and I’m about halfway through. Have you considered doing a show on point of view and… Continue Reading

Writing Noir and Crime Fiction with special guest Megan Abbott | Fiction School Podcast #21

Writing Noir and Crime Fiction with special guest Megan Abbott | Fiction School Podcast #21

Fiction School is so stoked to have Megan Abbott on the show this week. She’s one of the best writers of noir and crime fiction in the business today, and she’s also an awesome and nice person.  (It’s good to chat with a nice person about, as she says, “people doing bad things.”) On the… Continue Reading

How to End a Story: Cliffhangers, Closure and Retrospective Inevitability | Fiction School Podcast #19

How to End a Story: Cliffhangers, Closure and Retrospective Inevitability | Fiction School Podcast #19

There’s that moment when a book you’re reading has just a few pages left, and you get a little anxious.  You don’t want it to end, maybe.  Or you’re dying to know whodunit.  Will the girl get the guy? Will the misfits return home safely? There’s so much riding on that ending.  It’ll be the… Continue Reading

Writing Character-Driven Stories with Round Characters | Fiction School Podcast #15

Writing Character-Driven Stories with Round Characters | Fiction School Podcast #15

The local weirdo with the pet rat, the eccentric barista with the tattoo of an ironing board, the incompetent boss, the highfalutin poet.  Good characters are the stuff of life. But do we love character-driven stories?  Are readers willing to follow a highfalutin poet on his misadventures around, say, literary Detroit?  How do writers create… Continue Reading

Reading Like A Writer and Using Your Influences to Grow Your Writing Voice: The Thankfulness Show | Fiction School Podcast #13

Reading Like A Writer and Using Your Influences to Grow Your Writing Voice: The Thankfulness Show | Fiction School Podcast #13

This week, it being Thanksgiving and all, we’re feeling thankful. We’re thankful to be writers, thankful to have readers.  We’re thankful to have listeners to our podcast (Thanks!). And we are thankful for writers, especially the ones whose books made us want to write, authors who changed our lives and influenced the kind of stories… Continue Reading

When Readers Strike Back: How to Understand and Use Reader Feedback | Fiction School Podcast #10

When Readers Strike Back: How to Understand and Use Reader Feedback | Fiction School Podcast #10

In every writer’s career, there comes a point where we have to do something terrifying in order to get better.  We have to start showing our writing to other people before it’s done, before it’s perfect.  We know something’s wrong, but not exactly what, or why.  And we don’t know how to fix it yet.… Continue Reading