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Top 3 Tips to Write a Perfect Query Letter

All About The Query Letter (Or Email!) A great query letter or email can make all the difference to your writing career. It can mean hooking an industry pro with your writing … or having to shelve the screenplay or novel you have worked so hard on. Eek! But do not worry, we got your back. Let’s go! 1) Get Them Hooked Bad query letters often miss that extra ‘oomph’ that is supposed to intrigue agents in your writing. So how do you hook them? Mention if you have ever met the agent at a conference or a similar event.… Read More »Top 3 Tips to Write a Perfect Query Letter

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10 Big Mistakes To Avoid When Writing Female Characters

Don’t Underestimate Or Underwrite Fifty per cent of your potential audience is female, so it does NOT pay to underestimate your female characters. Women in audiences everywhere have made it clear in the past decade on social media … Underwrite female characters at your peril! Too often, female characters become stereotypical in unpublished novels and spec screenplays. A stereotype is a simplication. Whilst writers CAN use stereotypes on purpose for effect, too often writers use them by accident. This makes characters feel flat and two-dimensional. There are lots of lists of female stereotypes online, but I always think it’s more illuminating… Read More »10 Big Mistakes To Avoid When Writing Female Characters

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Top 5 Self-Publishing Mistakes Writers Make

On Self-Publishing Mistakes Self-publishing mistakes can cost time and money, which is why many writers shy away from it … But what if I told you the biggest self-publishing mistakes are actually EASY to avoid? This list will help you avoid the most obvious self-publishing mistakes and get your book out there. Ready? Let’s go … Mistake #1: Bad cover art Why’s this one first?? Well, rightly or wrongly – because EVERYONE judges a book by their cover!!! Ideally, you need a cover designer whose speciality is cover art. There’s lots out there, including designers who create ‘ready-made’ covers that… Read More »Top 5 Self-Publishing Mistakes Writers Make

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Top 5 Mistakes Writers Make With Sex Scenes

So, you want to write sex scenes? There’s a surprising dearth of sex scenes in the spec pile … and when they do appear, they are often incorrect, weird or even sexist. Here’s 5 mistakes to avoid if you want to attempt one in your novel or screenplay. Ready? Let’s go … 1) Too Vague/Euphemistic If I have to read one more piece of writing that describes two characters in bed ‘lying back, spent’, I will GO POSTAL! This such a boring description and I see it SO often. Another one that makes me grimace is when writers focus on… Read More »Top 5 Mistakes Writers Make With Sex Scenes

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5 Simple Steps To Getting Your Draft Written

Writing The First Draft Feeling stressed because you can’t move forwards towards your draft? You’re not alone. When we first conceive of an idea for a screenplay or novel, we often falter. This is because we are not used to being able to write whatever we want. This means we can get overwhelmed quickly. In addition, if no one is waiting on our draft, it can be hard to focus. This is one of the reasons I pulled together The B2W Screenwriter’s Roadmap (though you can use it to write novels too – I do!). But Bangers got in touch… Read More »5 Simple Steps To Getting Your Draft Written

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Is Your Story A Mystery, Horror or Thriller? Here’s How To Tell

Mystery, Thriller or Horror? Mystery, Thriller and Horror novels and screenplays do BIG business as they have high ‘adaptability’. Readers and viewers love them … plus there’s a lot of convergence between them. This is because the Mystery, Horror and Thriller genres have lots of elements that cross over. However, lots of writers run into trouble because they’re not really sure what their story *is* at foundation level. Whilst many writers know mystery usually involves some kind of twist, they often don’t know how to get there. As a result, writers may make their mystery too easy to guess, or… Read More »Is Your Story A Mystery, Horror or Thriller? Here’s How To Tell

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Writers Ask: What Does ‘Authenticity’ Really Mean, Anyway?

Accuracy Vs. Authenticity Last weekend I taught B2W’s Breaking Into Script Reading workshop where I talked about accuracy versus authenticity. I said that audience preferences have changed in the past ten years quite considerably. Whereas not long ago creatives had to be accurate or risk being considered a ‘bad’ writer, this is now the case when it comes to authenticity. This lead to a discussion of authenticity and HOW writers can ensure their writing feels real. I thought this might be useful for all the Bangers, so here goes. First things first, let’s define the actual word ‘authenticity’. Here it… Read More »Writers Ask: What Does ‘Authenticity’ Really Mean, Anyway?

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3 Steps To Writing, Editing & Submitting Your Novel

Writing, Editing AND Submitting (Or Self-Publishing!) Your Novel  B2W is best known for its screenwriting advice, but being a novelist and author myself, I also love to write and read about the art of novel writing, too. So, with lots of you Bang2writers out there resolving to write a novel then, here’s my top tips on getting yours written, edited AND out there! Enjoy … 1) Writing Your Novel DYK? Writing a novel is HARD! Le duh. The good news is, there’s a plethora of help online to get us through the process. Here’s some popular B2W articles with the… Read More »3 Steps To Writing, Editing & Submitting Your Novel

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Top 5 Solutions When You’re Stuck on Your Novel

How To Get Unstuck On Your Novel Are you stuck on your novel? Have you tried several different approaches, only to end up stuck again? I experienced this with my most recent novel, The Beached Ones. It took me years to get past that stuck place. Talk about frustrating! I thought I was going to have to give up on the story. You may be feeling the same way. If so, I’m here to tell you: I got through that stuck place and went on to win a publishing contract for the book. You can too. When You’re Stuck on Your… Read More »Top 5 Solutions When You’re Stuck on Your Novel

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10 Powerful Affirmations For Writers & How To Use Them

All About Affirmations Affirmations are positive statements that can help us to challenge and overcome self-sabotaging and/or negative thoughts. When we repeat them often, we start to believe in them. This means we can start to make positive changes. I first came across affirmations when I had cancer. My therapist at the time challenged me to use affirmations to challenge my belief I was doomed to die. I had only just survived a breakdown and could not face yet another journey back to health. She told me to repeat to myself the following as a starting point … ‘I will not… Read More »10 Powerful Affirmations For Writers & How To Use Them

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Hey Writers: Here’s Why You Haven’t Scored Representation Yet

Looking for Representation? There’s something that’s #1 on most writers’ wishlist: representation. The search term ‘how to get an agent‘ brings hundreds, if not thousands of writers to this blog every single month. It’s not difficult to see why. Gaining representation FEELS like the ultimate validation for a writer. After all, your screenplay or novel MUST be *good* if someone is willing to stand up and try and sell it, right? It’s also arguably better to have representation than not … Even though B2W is the first to say not every writer needs an agent, having representation can mean certain… Read More »Hey Writers: Here’s Why You Haven’t Scored Representation Yet

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Self-Publishing Should NEVER Be A Last Resort. Here’s Why

Self-Publishing Versus Traditional Publishing ‘I want an agent and a traditional publishing deal, but I guess I can always whack it up on the Kindle as a last resort.’ If I had a £1 for every time I heard this from a wannabe novelist, I would be hella rich by now. It seems as if new authors think self-publishing is the bottom of the pile, the ‘easy’ option if you will. It’s the thing you do when you have no other options left. The last resort. Ugh. Oi, Writers: NO! As most veteran Bangers know, I work with writers. The… Read More »Self-Publishing Should NEVER Be A Last Resort. Here’s Why

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