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How to structure your novel chapters

Chapters are the all-important building blocks of a novel. But how exactly should a first-time novelist develop and structure them in a manuscript? And what makes for a successful chapter, anyway? We asked veteran authors to share their best advice.

How to switch from novels to memoir (and vice versa)

If you’re considering switching from a novel to a memoir (or vice versa), what should you know before you begin? We asked five writers with published memoirs as well as novels for their expert advice.

The definitive guide to “show, don’t tell”

‘Show, don’t tell’ is great advice…in theory. In practice, it’s not that simple. We asked six acclaimed authors for their best advice on finding the right balance between the two elements in fiction.

Verse meets prose
Writing verse can help improve your prose. Photo by stockphoto mania/Shutterstock

When verse meets prose

How writing poems can enhance your fiction – and vice versa.

Definition of irony. Photo by Casimiro PT/Shutterstock

Understanding irony in fiction

Learn the differences between the three basic kinds of irony, verbal, dramatic, and situation, and how to incorporate them in your writing.

Heart of the story
Authors provide tips to finding the heart of your story or novel. Photo by Kan Taengnuanjan/Shutterstock

Finding the heart of your story

Authors share their tips and advice for discovering the essence of your story or novel.

Time to write
Time is always of the essence for writers. That is why we asked several authors to share insight into their routine.

Do you really have to write every day?

What does an ideal writing life look like? We asked successful authors to share their essential goals, habits, and routines.

A car whizzes down Memory Lane

Is the memoir market oversaturated?

We took a trip down memoir-y lane and asked: What makes a memoir truly great? What’s the best way to sell one? And – gulp – is this megapopular market finally oversaturated? Memoirists, agents, and publishers speak out.

Viet Thanh Nguyen: From both sides

In fiction and nonfiction alike, this Pulitzer Prize winner aims to shed fresh light on war, race, culture, and, ultimately, our humanity.

Tim O’Brien: The things he carries

For Tim O’Brien, the Vietnam War has remained a crucible in his fiction, but the power of imagination and memory, and ‘our elusive interior worlds,’ loom large too.

Sue Monk Kidd: How I Write

“Allow yourself to write badly in the beginning. That’s good tried and true advice. And then let it evolve as you rewrite.”

Elizabeth Strout is there

Although she has lived in New York City for most of her life, Elizabeth Strout looks to her home state of Maine for stories. Turns out, you can get there from here.

Adam Johnson: How I Write

“Each narrative you tell has to discover itself completely anew.”

In the shadow of terror

In her debut novel, Vaddey Ratner looks to her personal memories about fleeing the Khmer Rouge and to creative spirit as an artist to honor the lives of the fallen.

Russell Banks’ currency

The novelist talks about developing character, crafting stories and the passion necessary for both.