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BellaOnline's Fiction Writing Editor

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 T O P   T E N  

Here are the top ten articles for the Fiction Writing Site! These rankings are live and get reset at the beginning of each month, so check back often to see what your fellow visitors are most interested in!

1. Beware the Mary Sue Character
The Mary Sue character reads like a too-perfect version of the author. With no faults, she has no depth or complexity, and therefore no story worth caring about. She drags down the strongest plot, but if you know her characteristics, you can transform her into someone real on the rewrite.

2. Know the Unwritten Rules of Your Genre
In order to write successfully in a certain genre, you must know the unwritten rules – in short, what the readers in that genre want to see. This is overlooked by countless writers who either jump eagerly into a specific genre without researching it first, or knowingly try to break the rules.

3. Communicating With Your Beta Reader
Your working relationship with your beta reader is based on trust. That starts with understanding each other’s expectations and communication style.

4. Describe a Character Struggling Back from Defeat
Here is a text writing prompt for you. Describe a character struggling back from defeat. You never know who has the right stuff to overcome adversity.

5. Man with Phone Writing Prompt
The man in this photo writing prompt looks a bit like a fish out of water. He should spark some creative ideas as to how he, dressed as he is, got to where he is. Talk about a mismatch between snappy attire and bucolic surroundings!

6. Word Count and Fiction Lengths
Why worry about word count? After you finish writing your fiction project to whatever length it needs to be, you must know its approximate length category to market it.

7. What is a New Western
A New Western shares the same setting and themes as a Classic Western, but is likely to be more introspective, downbeat, anti-heroic, and morally ambiguous.

8. What is a Classic Western
There are three types of story in the western fiction genre – what I call Classic, New, and Modern. "Classic" means a Wild West story with heroism.

9. What is a Modern Western
To understand what a Modern Western is, you must first realize what it is not. It is not historical. Gone is the setting that forms such a powerful foundation for both the Classic Western and the New Western novels.

10. The Near-Death Experience of the Classic Western
There are three types of story in the western fiction genre. They are Classic, New, and Modern. Here is the near-death experience of the Classic Western at the hands of the Big Five Publishers of New York City, and its miraculous recovery.



Be sure to visit the Fiction Writing Archives for all the articles!



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Beware the Mary Sue Character

Communicating With Your Beta Reader

Know the Unwritten Rules of Your Genre

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