Character thoughts: When to italicize them

From Rick: In my June 1, 2020 post I talked about how to deal with character thoughts, specifically inner (direct) thoughts. I also talked about indirect thoughts. In a novel I’m currently editing, I noticed some places where the author

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Overwritten manuscripts: how to fix—PART 3

From Rick: In Part 2, I talked about two ways in which writers may overwrite: —unnecessary use of characters’ names —repeated words and phrases In this last part I’ll finish up this series by talking about three other ways writers

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Overwritten manuscripts: how to fix—PART 2

From Rick: Last time, I pointed out several ways in which writers overwrite their stories and novels: —unnecessary dialogue tags —wordiness in general —unnecessary repetition of information To that list I want to add: —unnecessary use of characters’ names —repeated

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Overwritten: a surfeit of words—PART 1

From Rick: Mark Twain’s essay “Fenimore Cooper’s Literary Offenses” is famous both for its typical Twain humor and for Twain’s rules for good writing. I’ve mentioned this essay before. You can do a Google search for it, or you can

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