Tips Tuesday: Writing Advice From Readers

Hi Swoon Readers (and Writers!),

We’ve shared a swoonworthy range of writing tips with you, featuring advice from both guest authors and editorial professionals, but we’ve also seen that you have a lot of great advice of your own! We really enjoy seeing what you think, and reading the thoughtful comments and feedback you give each other. So today, we thought we’d share the love, by spotlighting some of the great writing advice we’ve seen within the Swoon Reads community about different topics:

Using dialogue as character development:
“I enjoyed how you managed to convey the characters personalities through their actions and dialogue so that I really got a sense of who they were.” -Rebecca on The Stone Ones

Jack Sparrow is a great example of a character that is built through his actions and dialogue.

Character development:
“What I find most impressive about Kim’s craft is her ability to keep her setting and character development in equal balance. Neither outweighs the other. Every character, from major to minor, has nuance and a good degree of agency. Most all achieve some sort of arc. I loved getting to know Fallon and Sebastian, and I appreciated that Sebastian was not the typical, swoon-worthy bad boy. He had his own story. In fact, every character had his or her own story. Hijiri turned out to be my favorite, actually. I like that she ended up playing a significant and unexpected role. Hurrah for secondary characters!” – Amy on We Could Fall In Love

Pop culture references:
“One thing I did not like which I felt the need to bring to your attention is all the references you make to other books and movies. There are waaaay too many and you gave away a lot of spoilers. I haven’t read the Divergent series yet but now I don’t know if I will because you gave away the ending. You don’t need to compare your characters’ relationships to other characters just to give them meaning, Also, refrain from referencing other books you wrote since no one will understand the reference!” -Molly on Again

Consistency with dialogue and emotion:
“The only thing I would suggest to improve it even further, is to have another look at some of the characters’ reactions to what’s happening. When Ash tells Brigit that Abby is dead his dialogue seems too casual. He must be feeling devastated so I would have expected short, snappy dialogue rather than lengthy sentences. Also, when he finds out that Brigit hit Abby with her hockey stick he barely comments on it when you’d expect him to be furious. Also, we then see Ash laughing with Luke while they’re in the hospital and I’m not sure they’d be laughing after the trauma they’ve been through. So it’s just worth checking that your characters’ reactions are in keeping with what they must be feeling.” – C. A. Grimm on Never Forget

Beginning your book:
“At the very beginning there was a lot of background info provided. My suggestion (based on advice I’ve received) would be to either spread that background info out more, or think about whether the story should start at an earlier point in time, so that you can turn some of that background into plot. Just food for thought — hope it’s helpful! Best of luck to you!!” -Karen Trowbridge on Adam & Eve

Thank you for reading, rating, and commenting so industriously, and making Swoon Reads such an awesome community—keep up the great work!

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