Category Archives: The Craft of Writing

Critique: Calibrate Your Expectations Before Using this Tool


by Chris Mandeville I’ve been perfecting my recipe for Coq au Vin for years. I use the happiest, most humanely raised poultry, a decent French Burgundy, organic farm-fresh veggies, and my own secret blend of herbs. The other night I prepared this special dish for my critique group—we always eat dinner before discussing our writing—and because my critique partner Aaron is a

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Synopsis: The Tool You Need (whether you know it or not)

woman writing

by Chris Mandeville A synopsis is a document —sometimes a paragraph, sometimes several pages— that describes your book. What could be simpler? As a writer, I know my story better than anyone and thus should have no problem summarizing it. Really? Yes, theoretically. But in the real world, writing a short summary of a novel can be a challenging task,

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