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Featuring everything new and experienced authors need to develop creative and technical skills. Check out writing development articles, our Word of the Day, writing prompts, anthology opportunities and more!

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Story Endings

Story Endings “A part of the journey...is the end.” - Tony Stark As I’ve been working more and more on finally bringing some of my longest running stories to their grand finale at last, I can say that I’ve actually been pretty proud of taking my time and pretty much taking my time and making sure that it was done right. Or, at least the way that I had originally imagined it from the very beginning, without having to really compromise in terms of how all of the events got wrapped up. Nat

Subverting Expectations

Subverting Expectations You ever see one of those race car lengths on a full track, with everybody is trying to get ahead of their other opponents? And there's more to it all than just slamming your foot on the gas pedal and going faster than everybody else. There's a strategy involved. A little gas here, a little brake there, how you take certain turns, etc. So...you've got somebody ahead of you, and you're trying to find your way around them so you can move up from fourth to third place. A

Retcons

One of the many pitfalls that a writer might face when taking a more 'organic' approach to writing a story is possibly running into a flurry of decisions that you made in the heat of the moment and may change your mind on those decisions later on. When I talk about an organic approach, I mean having a certain structure and plot in mind...but still giving yourself room to create on the spot as new ideas come to mind. I definitely write that way, and I feel like it connects me to my stories in way

Sexual Pacing

Oh yeah, I'm bringing out the dreaded 'S' word for this one! Hehehe, calm down...take a few breaths...and smile for me, k? I won't make it too painful for you to read. Promise. Loosen up a little bit, geez. Now...I've been writing for over 20 years in the gay erotica genre. And thanks to Myr and the folks at GayAuthors, I KNOW that a vast majority of you guys read the sexy stuff on this site! Polls don't lie! LOL! It was something that I was actually kind of curious about, as trends change

Creating Dread

Now, when I talk about creating a sense of 'dread' in your writing, whether it be drama, thriller, horror, sci-fi, or romance...I'm not always talking about something life threatening or earth shattering every single time. It's not about action. It's not about gore, or heartbreak, or terror. The concept of dread, in my opinion, is much more evident in its subtlety than in its delivery of some major occurrence or surprise twist. The most effective way to use 'dread' in your stories is as a build

Plot Armor

::Old Timey Radio Voice:: "Lois is trapped underground and tied up next to the bomb! Jimmy Olsen is being held captive by the gangsters from the underground syndicate! And Clark Kent can't leave the Daily Bugle in time to rescue them without giving away his secret identity!!! Can Superman possibly HOPE to save the day??? Hehehe...umm, of course he can! He's freakin' Superman! Duh! I remember being in the college dorms with my roommates and some of our friends, discussing which ch

Lost in the Middle

It can be a virtual No Man's Land sometimes when you're writing. A place where you may not be sure or feel quite confident about where your next 'peak' or your next 'valley' may come in terms of telling the story that you wanted to tell. And I feel like it's times like this when you really have your skills and instincts tested in a major way...all for the sake of keeping things moving smoothly. And more importantly...moving forward. For this article, I'd like to bring up the subject of gett

Plot Twists

I believe that one of the best ways to spice up a certain type of story, depending on what you happen to be writing at the moment...is to grab your audience and turn them upside down with an effective plot twist. As many of you have heard me say in past articles...the readers that you are doing your very best to entertain are much more savvy and experienced when it comes to reading fiction these days. This is the information age, and things keep speeding up. You're not speaking to folks with a l

Little Moments

What creates a story? What creates an unexpected thrill? What connects the writer to the readers that they're attempting to entertain? These are all questions that should be lingering in the back of your mind when you're writing your story. NOT in the forefront, because writing a story isn't all about catering to an audience. Instead, it should be about exploring your true self and your deepest emotions. Having an audience enjoy and appreciate what you do is a thrilling side effect to all o

Cliffhangers

You know, there's a quote that says that jealousy in a loving relationship is a lot like salt in your food. Just enough can enrich and enhance flavor, but too much can bitter the taste. I think that, when it comes to putting cliffhangers in your stories, perhaps from chapter to chapter, or maybe even from completed novel to completed novel...the same rule applies. I mean, sure, you can write cliffhangers all day long if you really wanted to...but it can get tiresome in the long run. In fact, I t

Sub-plots

One thing that I've discovered while writing my own stories over the years, is the 'lacking' presence of added depth when I only have one situation going on from beginning to end. Now, this may be just a personal preference of mine...but when I'm focused on two boys and one issue, the theme of the story itself feels really basic and seems to fall 'flat' to me sometimes. Like something is missing. Nothing major, really...but it's similar to a cook tasting their food and thinking, "Hmmmm...I need

Comicality

Comicality in Writing Tips - Events

Kill The Dog

Hehehe, you know when I was in college, I had a writing teacher that had a somewhat comical, but very true, rule to follow when it came to getting your audience to truly feel a moment of intense emotional pain in your project. Works every time. He used to say, "If you want to make your audience cry...kill the dog!" And, yes, he meant that literally. Script wise, anyway. You can have Rambo gun down an army of enemies in a foreign land, or have Iron Man burn a bunch of terrorists to ashe

Climaxes

It’s the weekend again! So...let’s talk about climaxes! Wait! Not THAT kind of climax! Stay out of the gutter! Geez! We’re talking about story story climaxes. This is the grand finale to your story! This is the big finish! This is where you’re able to give your readers the big pay off that they’ve been waiting for since they got hooked on those first few sentences of your story. A story’s climax can really make or break a wonderfully written project, depending on how well it work

Plot Holes

There are five words that always make me laugh whenever I watch one of the videos from the Youtube series below, hehehe! Because it's SO true for every story and every TV show and every movie that I've ever seen! And it's true for your work too. Can't help but to get a few chuckles out of it! Those five words? "Super easy! Barely an inconvenience!" Don't worry, an explanation is coming. One thing that I hope many of you will take from this week's discussion is the idea that a

Comicality

Comicality in Writing Tips - Events

Connective Tissue

I can't imagine anything feeling better than finding some level of pride in one of my projects. (Well, there might be a few things that feel better, but I can keep my clothes on for this one! Hehehe!) And that pride doesn't just come from favorable responses and good ratings. In fact, it comes from finishing a new chapter or project before anybody ever even sees it. It's like the planets and stars align, and everything is finally fitting together the way that I pictured it...or at least as close

Comicality

Comicality in Writing Tips - Events

Story Arcs

Beginning. Middle. End. Setup. Conflict. Resolution. All stories have a certain formula to them. That formula can be played with, rearranged, and altered, in a variety of different ways...but even that has some form of structure, when you sit down and think about it. Straying from a conventional method of telling a story doesn't mean that the original blueprint doesn't exist. We just choose to find a way of subverting expectations concerning the norm. A norm that set the standard for u

Comicality

Comicality in Writing Tips - Events

Creating and Escalating Tension

Now, while many readers that get truly involved with the stories we write online are mostly involved in the sometimes exaggerated drama of the situations we put our main characters through...I feel that it is often the tension delivered in a few key scenes, sprinkled here and there throughout, that truly captivates a reader's attention and brings them to the edge of their seats. It's this grinding on the nerves, along with a few tugs on the heart strings, that can really allow your audience to l

Comicality

Comicality in Writing Tips - Events

Peaks and Valleys

Raise your hand if you′ve been on a roller coaster before! Hehehe, I′m just kidding. It′s the internet, I can′t see you raising your hand! Trust me, if I could set up spy cameras around you, it would be in the shower...not next to your laptop! ::Giggles:: Seriously, though...when riding a roller coaster, you experience certain peaks and valleys. You slow down in certain sections of the ride, left anticipating the next big ′dip′ with baited breath...and then everything speeds up and races t

Comicality

Comicality in Writing Tips - Events

Foreshadowing

I believe that one of the biggest tricks you can ever hope to pull off in writing a story is the art of foreshadowing, which is a LOT more challenging than you might think it is. This is due to the fact that you have to be able to set up a series of major events in advance...without letting your readers know what those events are ahead of time. In fact, you don't even want your audience to know that you're doing it at all until you get the pleasure of landing that 'zing' moment upon them later o

Introducing Sex Into Your Story

There are two schools of learning when it comes to writing erotica...some people want a full story with drama and tension and build up...and some people are rock hard already and want to find something hot to get off to! Hehehe, and sometimes we understandably flip flop from one to the other. Depends on the mood, I suppose. But if your writing a story, and you label it as 'erotica'...just keep in mind that no matter how intriguing the story is, no matter how adorable your characters are, or how

First Kiss

No matter how hot and steamy the sex may get between your main character and his love interest later on in your story...sometimes the sweetest and most explosive moment of all comes from that very first kiss. Even if your characters are older and it's not their first kiss ever...it's that first delicate connection with the guy you're passing off as his perfect counterpart. If done right, a first kiss between characters can be just as erotic as every other part of your story, if not more so.

Another Opportunity for Learning: Plotting!

As with a few weeks ago, this Wednesday we're lacking any submissions for the author self-promotions and self-improvement blogs (shown below) so I thought we'd focus on some information and questions shared on GA by members and authors and maybe some other help I could provide when it comes to another vital aspect to writing to build on last week's post. The earlier exploring characterization explored past blogs that had different angles for writing characters as well as two file downloads I've

Cia

Cia in Writing Tips - Events

Writing Tip: Conflict Is Key

ANNOUNCEMENT: Please welcome GayAuthors.org's newest Hosted Author: David McLeod. David has been a Promising Author here and has a great body of work - hope you check it out!   Sorry for the slight delay this morning, got caught up in one too many phone calls. Sometimes, conflict can be a burden, or - as Libby Drew helps point out, it can be the key to great writing. We hope you enjoy this latest writing tip - let us know some other ideas for conflict that you think could be effective. As alwa
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