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5 Editors Tackle the 12 Fatal Flaws of Fiction Writing

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Don't fall victim to the 12 fatal flaws of fiction writing Fiction writers often struggle to improve their craft And the biggest challenge comes from the inability to see what isn’t working. The prose feels off. The scene isn’t gelling. The dialogue sounds stilted or clunky. But they don’t know why or how to fix it. This book lays it all out 5 Editors Tackle the Twelve F Don't fall victim to the 12 fatal flaws of fiction writing Fiction writers often struggle to improve their craft And the biggest challenge comes from the inability to see what isn’t working. The prose feels off. The scene isn’t gelling. The dialogue sounds stilted or clunky. But they don’t know why or how to fix it. This book lays it all out 5 Editors Tackle the Twelve Fatal Flaws of Fiction Writing demonstrates the deadly dozen pitfalls on the road to a strong story, along with revisions that show writers exactly how to avoid novel failure.No other writing craft book offers such detailed instruction in how to spot and remedy the major flaws of fiction writing. What makes this book an important addition to a writer’s bookshelf? More than 60 Before and After passages showcase each of the twelve fatal flaws, which are then picked apart and examined to help writers spot these flaws in their own writing and fix them. Five editors with extensive background in both editing fiction and writing novels bring a wealth of insights, examples, and solutions to these flaws, using various genre styles and POVs. Each chapter ends with a checklist to help writers seek and destroy these fatal flaws in their manuscript, followed by bonus Before and After passages to help them test what they’ve learned. This in-depth guide to self-editing is an invaluable resource for any writer of any genre. It shows, not just tells, how to write better fiction. Using it, you’ll be armed with the tools and skills you need to conquer the twelve fatal flaws of fiction writing. Here are some of the 12 fatal flaws: Overwriting—the most egregious and common flaw in fiction writing. Nothin’ Happenin’—Too many stories take too long to get going. Learn what it means to start in medias res. Weak Construction—It sneaks in at the level of words and sentences, and rears up in up in the form of passive voice, ing verbs, and misplaced modifiers. Too Much Backstory—the bane of many manuscripts. Backstory has its place, but too often it serves as an info dump and bogs down pacing. POV Violations—Head hopping, characters knowing things they can’t know, and foreshadowing are just some of the many POV violations explored. Telling instead of Showing—Writers have heard this admonition, but there’s a lot to understanding how and when to show instead of tell. Lack of Pacing and Tension—Many factors affect pacing and tension: clunky passages, mundane dialogue, unimportant information, and so much more. Flawed Dialogue Construction—Writers need to learn to balance speech and narrative tags and avoid “on the nose” speech. “Underwriting”—just as fatal as overwriting.


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Don't fall victim to the 12 fatal flaws of fiction writing Fiction writers often struggle to improve their craft And the biggest challenge comes from the inability to see what isn’t working. The prose feels off. The scene isn’t gelling. The dialogue sounds stilted or clunky. But they don’t know why or how to fix it. This book lays it all out 5 Editors Tackle the Twelve F Don't fall victim to the 12 fatal flaws of fiction writing Fiction writers often struggle to improve their craft And the biggest challenge comes from the inability to see what isn’t working. The prose feels off. The scene isn’t gelling. The dialogue sounds stilted or clunky. But they don’t know why or how to fix it. This book lays it all out 5 Editors Tackle the Twelve Fatal Flaws of Fiction Writing demonstrates the deadly dozen pitfalls on the road to a strong story, along with revisions that show writers exactly how to avoid novel failure.No other writing craft book offers such detailed instruction in how to spot and remedy the major flaws of fiction writing. What makes this book an important addition to a writer’s bookshelf? More than 60 Before and After passages showcase each of the twelve fatal flaws, which are then picked apart and examined to help writers spot these flaws in their own writing and fix them. Five editors with extensive background in both editing fiction and writing novels bring a wealth of insights, examples, and solutions to these flaws, using various genre styles and POVs. Each chapter ends with a checklist to help writers seek and destroy these fatal flaws in their manuscript, followed by bonus Before and After passages to help them test what they’ve learned. This in-depth guide to self-editing is an invaluable resource for any writer of any genre. It shows, not just tells, how to write better fiction. Using it, you’ll be armed with the tools and skills you need to conquer the twelve fatal flaws of fiction writing. Here are some of the 12 fatal flaws: Overwriting—the most egregious and common flaw in fiction writing. Nothin’ Happenin’—Too many stories take too long to get going. Learn what it means to start in medias res. Weak Construction—It sneaks in at the level of words and sentences, and rears up in up in the form of passive voice, ing verbs, and misplaced modifiers. Too Much Backstory—the bane of many manuscripts. Backstory has its place, but too often it serves as an info dump and bogs down pacing. POV Violations—Head hopping, characters knowing things they can’t know, and foreshadowing are just some of the many POV violations explored. Telling instead of Showing—Writers have heard this admonition, but there’s a lot to understanding how and when to show instead of tell. Lack of Pacing and Tension—Many factors affect pacing and tension: clunky passages, mundane dialogue, unimportant information, and so much more. Flawed Dialogue Construction—Writers need to learn to balance speech and narrative tags and avoid “on the nose” speech. “Underwriting”—just as fatal as overwriting.

30 review for 5 Editors Tackle the 12 Fatal Flaws of Fiction Writing

  1. 5 out of 5

    Glen Donaldson

    A wise person once observed that advice books on writing can be legitimately compared to tools sold to fossickers during the gold rush days of the 1800’s. History shows the only individuals who reliably prospered during such manic periods of ‘gold fever’ (“There’s bound to be some in them thar hills!”) were the business–minded types who set up shop supplying the requisite tools of trade – pans, picks, spades, gloves etc – to the ever hopeful prospectors; ninety-five percent of who would never se A wise person once observed that advice books on writing can be legitimately compared to tools sold to fossickers during the gold rush days of the 1800’s. History shows the only individuals who reliably prospered during such manic periods of ‘gold fever’ (“There’s bound to be some in them thar hills!”) were the business–minded types who set up shop supplying the requisite tools of trade – pans, picks, spades, gloves etc – to the ever hopeful prospectors; ninety-five percent of who would never see so much as an atom of the shiny stuff. And so it can be said with craft books when an everyday person with an interest in writing buys one offering to make them a more successful writer if only the advice is followed. When success and riches don’t follow in the promised quantities and the hard realities of competing in a sodden, hyper-saturated market begin to bite, where, if any, does the fault lie? Writing advice books, unlike say cookbooks, should be bought with a significantly lowered expectation that if the recipe is followed to the letter for, to take as an example, Pommes de Terre Duchesse (French potato meringues), the dish will emerge from the oven looking exactly as it appears in the celebrity chef endorsed, glossy how-to manual. By the same token, success due in part to reading writing advice books cannot be ruled out. John Grisham, James Patterson, Patricia Cornwall, Stephen King and any other flaming star in the writing world have no doubt, at some point in their lives read a craft book which in some way may have strengthened their style and ability. Writing advice books will always be written and bought. Accepting this reality, discussion of them therefore need focus on sorting the precious gems and vein deposits from the ever flowing river silt. Which brings us to FIVE EDITORS TACKLE THE TWELVE FATAL FLAWS OF FICTION. As writing advice books go, this one comes out above average without ever really threatening to rise to the stone cold classic mantle. Five female writers, all published authors and all connected to the online website LIVE WRITE THRIVE don the shiny sheriff’s badge of Editor and let rip with enough scholarly advice to sink a battleship. Let’s acknowledge straight up when talk turns to ‘rules of writing’ some readers will instinctively want to be rule breakers. Better then to think of ‘guidelines’ of which there are in spades in this text. The most skilled creators of these types of books know that readers don’t just come looking for information and motivation, they want understanding as well. So what does the amateur author looking to better themselves get for their money with this manual? Seems that everyone’s mother was right after all. The mantra of this book can be summed up in the age old advice about balance in all things, where balance means not too much and not too little. Balance between thought, action and emotion. Balance between narrative and dialogue. Balance between slowing down and cutting to the chase. Balance between adding vivid detail and deleting detail that is irrelevant. To their credit, the authors all acknowledge that a great many tips are more easily given then followed. This is welcome understanding for the reader. In another section the authors again eat humble pie and admit that ‘theory’ comes with its own in-built limitations and sometimes editorial advice can go askew. Apart from the twelve chapters devoted to making it clear what the classic flaws of fiction are perceived to be, the text also comes with before and after passages whereby the reader can bear witness firsthand to the transformational effect of the advice if followed. The before passages are generally both transparently and exaggeratedly ‘bad’ so the difference when they magically transform into ‘good’ writing after the application of the proffered advice is all the more noticeable. (“Granted, the before passage possibly seems extreme.” P117) As if to confirm this, one of the editors, Robin Patchen, confesses the ‘before’ passage took her five minutes to write while the ‘after’ passage took closer to an hour. Conclusion? It would appear bad writing flows so much more readily and comes that much more naturally to us all. The authors all quote extensively from their own published novels (“Let’s take a look at this scene from my novel _______________.”) This approach had to have saved a lot of time in chasing down copyright permissions to use other writer’s works, however there’s no denying this practice also carries with it the unfortunate air of self-promotion. Included as well are exercises where the reader is asked to put into practice the advice given and transform a passage of text themselves. The book naturally warns of the perils of purple prose and keeping to its ‘all things in moderation’ edict includes seemingly contradictory chapters on “Overwriting” and “Avoiding the Vague Swamp”, “Too Much Backstory” and “Too Little Backstory” as well as the obligatory chapter (Fatal Flaw # 6) on Showing Not Telling. Perhaps to avoid the complete slide into cliché the book also includes a chapter entitled “When it’s Better To tell Than Show”. The towering quote of the text for me was from editor Robin Patchen, speaking on the importance of cadence in writing - “Readers long for beauty in words the way tourists seek out beauty in landscape and architecture. Perhaps they fly to Paris for the wine and cheese, but they’ll admire the Notre Dame on the way to dinner and the trip will be richer for it.” (p248) Practical advice is positively swirling amongst these pages and while it does pack some serious fire power in this regard I couldn’t help but think that the large concrete slabs of, what at a certain point, begins to feel like unrelenting advice and correction, could perhaps have been made to feel a little more aerated with the addition of something of the order of a sprinkling, let’s say of writerly cartoons for example (You know the type where one person is saying to another less then serious stuff like –“My best fiction writing is my daily to-do list.”). If you’re looking to remain on the writing advice treadmill but want a little more entertainment along the way I recommend two other texts- HOW TO WRITE BADLY WELL by Joel Stickly and BACK TO CREATIVE WRTING SCHOOL by Bridget Whelan.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Sarah

    Age Appropriate For: All Ages Best for Ages: 15 and up Read on Kindle Unlimited. This is the first book on the writing craft I’ve finished in a while. I’ve started a lot but stopped reading because they felt so basic. Often they all have the same information, and it just doesn’t feel like it is worth my time. This book was amazing! Not only did it tackle some different information, but the whole set up made it very useful. These editors worked together to tackle the fatal flaws from different perspe Age Appropriate For: All Ages Best for Ages: 15 and up Read on Kindle Unlimited. This is the first book on the writing craft I’ve finished in a while. I’ve started a lot but stopped reading because they felt so basic. Often they all have the same information, and it just doesn’t feel like it is worth my time. This book was amazing! Not only did it tackle some different information, but the whole set up made it very useful. These editors worked together to tackle the fatal flaws from different perspectives. Not only did they write about it, but they also wrote part of a story and then corrected it so you could see what they were talking about. Except for one author, who used a couple of curse words in one example and briefly described the reactions to a girl in a skimpy dress, the examples were clean. Even the one author’s examples didn’t go overboard, but I thought I would mention them for the sake of some of the people that read these reviews. I found it very helpful to read this right before I start editing my next book. I feel it will help me sharpen my focus and be able to see some of the flaws that I can so easily miss. I love the checklists at the end of each chapter so that you have a quick way of reviewing what you learned. I highly recommend this book for authors looking to improve their writing.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Rachel

    I received an advance copy of 5 Editors Tackle the 12 Fatal Flaws of Fiction Writing in exchange for this honest review. As an editor, I value opportunities for continuing education and refresher courses. So I jumped at the chance to review this book written by five of my respected colleagues. Together they explore twelve areas authors commonly find difficult to master. Taking one “fatal flaw” at a time, these editors take turns discussing ways to identify these issues and ways to fix them. Each I received an advance copy of 5 Editors Tackle the 12 Fatal Flaws of Fiction Writing in exchange for this honest review. As an editor, I value opportunities for continuing education and refresher courses. So I jumped at the chance to review this book written by five of my respected colleagues. Together they explore twelve areas authors commonly find difficult to master. Taking one “fatal flaw” at a time, these editors take turns discussing ways to identify these issues and ways to fix them. Each editor has her own section within each chapter and gives her professional perspective on the problem at hand. Every section contains an example of a before passage with problems and an after passage that has been fixed. Having the five different perspectives also shows how different techniques can be used to accomplish different purposes. And at the end of each chapter, there is a sample passage for the readers to practice on. This allows the readers to apply what they’ve learned in each chapter. The advice is sound and there is a great advantage to receiving all five perspectives on each flaw. I certainly recognized these flaws as common errors I encounter in my editing and much of the advice is advice I give to my clients. I did learn a few new tricks, though, that I’ll be happily passing along to my authors. I gave this book four stars instead of five only because the format was not particularly my favorite. I would have preferred the five perspectives to be woven together seamlessly so the advice was offered in cohesive chapters instead of broken into sections. While this format will work very well for some readers and not as well for others, the content is valuable and practical and can be used by all. If you’ve had trouble with any of these twelve fatal flaws, you’ll surely appreciate owning a copy of this book!

  4. 4 out of 5

    Jason Gillikin

    Good advice; not-so-good examples The five editors cover 12 subjects and all 12 subjects are, I think, spot-on. Thematically, this book has real value. However, the individual editors are hit-or-miss; Lakin is probably the strongest of the whole. My only gripe is that all five editors seem to favor a specific style of writing that isn't necessarily the best style for beginning authors to emulate. The highly emotive blend of third-person narration with first-person mental asides pervades the examp Good advice; not-so-good examples The five editors cover 12 subjects and all 12 subjects are, I think, spot-on. Thematically, this book has real value. However, the individual editors are hit-or-miss; Lakin is probably the strongest of the whole. My only gripe is that all five editors seem to favor a specific style of writing that isn't necessarily the best style for beginning authors to emulate. The highly emotive blend of third-person narration with first-person mental asides pervades the examples. But this style isn't exactly the only one out there and some editors (including me!) rarely accept submissions presented with the structure and voice recommended by these authors. This book is good for intermediate-level authors who want some insight into how to tune their prose; they should know enough to so separate the wheat from the chaff. Experienced authors will likely find little that they don't already know, and novice authors may find value provided they're not led astray by the monochromatic brush the editors use to paint "good" prose on the authorial canvas.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Tom

    This book is a quick read!! I would have finished it a lot sooner if I didn't have a lot going on. But to get right into this review I can say if you're a fiction writer, than this book is for you! It will help you out with learning right tricks to help with editing and not only that but help with learning to use words wisely. This book is a quick read!! I would have finished it a lot sooner if I didn't have a lot going on. But to get right into this review I can say if you're a fiction writer, than this book is for you! It will help you out with learning right tricks to help with editing and not only that but help with learning to use words wisely.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Karin

    As an editor, I work with a lot of new novelists, and most of them make the same mistakes. I'm always looking for good books to recommend to help them learn how to identify and correct those mistakes -- this book is going at the top of my list. I'll be honest -- it's not a great cover and the title is a bit tedious. I know three of the contributing editors, though, so I picked up a copy. Still, it took me a couple of years before I decided to read this. If you're a new writer struggling to underst As an editor, I work with a lot of new novelists, and most of them make the same mistakes. I'm always looking for good books to recommend to help them learn how to identify and correct those mistakes -- this book is going at the top of my list. I'll be honest -- it's not a great cover and the title is a bit tedious. I know three of the contributing editors, though, so I picked up a copy. Still, it took me a couple of years before I decided to read this. If you're a new writer struggling to understand and master the basics of fiction writing, you need a copy of this book. It approaches each "fatal flaw" from five different angles, increasing the odds that the reader will connect with and understand one of the explanations. On top of that, the book is full of before and after sections, so even if the reader doesn't completely understand what the author is saying, all you need to do is compare the before and after examples to see how something was edited. I'll be adding this to my list of must-haves for new authors, next to Jeff Gerke's The Art & Craft of Writing Christian Fiction, Brown and Kings Self-Editing for Fiction Writers, and Kathy Tyers Writing in Deep Viewpoint. G rated.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Bethany Kaczmarek

    So often, I think writers have too many editing books on their shelves. Editing is so subjective, and the ideas and methods of various books are as diverse as their editor-authors. But that's exactly WHY this book is one of the few that should be on your shelf. For every flaw addressed, you get the suggestions of at least three editors. Five offer their hard-won wisdom throughout the book, and I have no doubt you'll find tricks and ideas that work for you. It's so easy as a reader to see what wor So often, I think writers have too many editing books on their shelves. Editing is so subjective, and the ideas and methods of various books are as diverse as their editor-authors. But that's exactly WHY this book is one of the few that should be on your shelf. For every flaw addressed, you get the suggestions of at least three editors. Five offer their hard-won wisdom throughout the book, and I have no doubt you'll find tricks and ideas that work for you. It's so easy as a reader to see what works and what doesn't. But learning HOW to tackle the flaws is a different story. Use it as as interactive workbook, making your own notes in the margins of the "flawed" examples. There's such a wealth of insight and practical tips, you'll be sure to find an arsenal for your own editing process.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Lori Clark

    I received this book in exchange for an honest review. I really enjoyed reading this book. I found it very informative and painfully (at times) enlightening. I've read book that were guilty of some of these flaws and thought to myself: "Get on with it already." I found this book extremely useful for strengthening my own writing process. As well as helping with the editing process. If you are an author, I highly recommend you pick up a copy of this book today and try not to take it personally when I received this book in exchange for an honest review. I really enjoyed reading this book. I found it very informative and painfully (at times) enlightening. I've read book that were guilty of some of these flaws and thought to myself: "Get on with it already." I found this book extremely useful for strengthening my own writing process. As well as helping with the editing process. If you are an author, I highly recommend you pick up a copy of this book today and try not to take it personally when/if you seem to be guilty of every flaw or some of them. Just grin and bear it and work through it. Your writing will be stronger for it in the long run! My only nit-pick here is the length of the title.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Josiah

    This was an incredibly helpful book. While I believe I have a solid grasp of what makes a good plot and overall story as a whole, I struggle more on the scene-by-scene or sentence-by-sentence level as a writer, and this book did a great job of meeting me where I was at and showing how to avoid different writing flaws. For a book written by five different authors, it flowed very smoothly, and the multiplicity of examples they used to illustrate their points was incredibly helpful. All-in-all, thi This was an incredibly helpful book. While I believe I have a solid grasp of what makes a good plot and overall story as a whole, I struggle more on the scene-by-scene or sentence-by-sentence level as a writer, and this book did a great job of meeting me where I was at and showing how to avoid different writing flaws. For a book written by five different authors, it flowed very smoothly, and the multiplicity of examples they used to illustrate their points was incredibly helpful. All-in-all, this was a very practical and useful book that I'll be keeping on-hand as a reference. Rating: 4.5 Stars (Excellent).

  10. 4 out of 5

    Brittany Fichter

    This is absolutely the most valuable book on writing mechanics and self-editing I've ever read. This book is a must-have for every writer! In fact, I liked it so much I ordered a hard copy to go along with me ebook version. I would give it ten stars if I could! More of this series will soon be joining my library... This is absolutely the most valuable book on writing mechanics and self-editing I've ever read. This book is a must-have for every writer! In fact, I liked it so much I ordered a hard copy to go along with me ebook version. I would give it ten stars if I could! More of this series will soon be joining my library...

  11. 4 out of 5

    Livia Verrell

    The 12 Fatal Flaws of Fiction Writing by C.S. Lakin, with Linda S Clare, Christy Distler, Robing Patchen, and Rachel Starr Thomson provides an excellent down to earth editorial view of twelve writing flaws that result in manuscript rejections. Each featured editor is also a published author who offers their own unique voice and view. With each fatal flaw, before and after writing samples are provided along with a checklist and writing exercise to test the reader’s skill. As a long time writer the The 12 Fatal Flaws of Fiction Writing by C.S. Lakin, with Linda S Clare, Christy Distler, Robing Patchen, and Rachel Starr Thomson provides an excellent down to earth editorial view of twelve writing flaws that result in manuscript rejections. Each featured editor is also a published author who offers their own unique voice and view. With each fatal flaw, before and after writing samples are provided along with a checklist and writing exercise to test the reader’s skill. As a long time writer there was plenty of information I have seen before but also information about new tricks and practical ways of approaching pesky writing errors. Linda S Clare’s “Rule of Three” provided an excellent guide in managing overwriting. Robin Patchen reminded writers about Monty Python’s DRD, Department of Redundancy Department. Christy Distler warned writers to beware of the “British Butler Syndrome” in dialogue and Rachel Starr Thomson advised the use of visual media to teach pacing, plotting, dialogue, and the mechanics of a good setting. I particularly enjoyed C.S. Lakin’s section on “Those Lovely Adverbs” which was written with humor and insight. C.S. Lakin was a highly effective moderator and contributor. I look forward to reading more of her work. If you love writing and all things about writing you will have to read this book. Five very talented editors write about practical techniques and provide examples on how to produce a best-selling book.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Thegazzardian

    A reasonable compilation of various writing tips. How useful this book will be to you will depend on how many of these you have heard before. The biggest advantage of this book is it is written by real editors, so the advice they are giving is based on the biggest issues they see in manuscripts coming across their desk. This is valuable insight. The downside is, for me at least, over half of the book were things I had heard from other sources, like writing communities and other writing advice bo A reasonable compilation of various writing tips. How useful this book will be to you will depend on how many of these you have heard before. The biggest advantage of this book is it is written by real editors, so the advice they are giving is based on the biggest issues they see in manuscripts coming across their desk. This is valuable insight. The downside is, for me at least, over half of the book were things I had heard from other sources, like writing communities and other writing advice books. In terms of the format, each flaw has multiple dimensions examined by the different editors, and examples of before and after passages. I found the before and after passages were often skippable, as they weren't side by side, so if you didn't memorize them, the differences weren't always super apparent; and often, the passages were exaggerated (I hope)! All the above said, the things I hadn't heard before helped me, and I was able to improve the advice I'm giving as a beta reader to a friend thanks to this book, so there is value in it. I would read one flaw each morning over breakfast before I went to do my daily writing, and it was nice to have a little bit of writing advice that could be consumed in 5 or less minutes before getting into the act.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Ammon

    AMAZING! PHENOMENAL! This book has already transformed my writing more than any other book I've read----more than any class I've taken. Showing the examples of when it's done wrong and when it's done right, was exactly what I needed. I have struggled for years to understand why my writing stays very much on the page----no leaping off it whatsoever. Practicing the techniques in this book was not only fun, it has completely changed the way I approach my writing! I am definitely going to read ever AMAZING! PHENOMENAL! This book has already transformed my writing more than any other book I've read----more than any class I've taken. Showing the examples of when it's done wrong and when it's done right, was exactly what I needed. I have struggled for years to understand why my writing stays very much on the page----no leaping off it whatsoever. Practicing the techniques in this book was not only fun, it has completely changed the way I approach my writing! I am definitely going to read every other book in The Writer's Toolbox Series.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Ms. Zipporah

    Thank You.. Thank you all for this wonderful experience. This book increased my knowledge abut the fatal flaws in the beginnings of my writings. Just when I think “I know a little something,” as my grandmother would say; I’ve only begin to scratch the surface. This toolbox made me a better, 10th, 11th, and 12th draft writer. Thank you for your “teach me how to fish” approach. I love a challenge... You all challenged me to do my best. Thank you... The proof will be in my 2020 book review... Kind R Thank You.. Thank you all for this wonderful experience. This book increased my knowledge abut the fatal flaws in the beginnings of my writings. Just when I think “I know a little something,” as my grandmother would say; I’ve only begin to scratch the surface. This toolbox made me a better, 10th, 11th, and 12th draft writer. Thank you for your “teach me how to fish” approach. I love a challenge... You all challenged me to do my best. Thank you... The proof will be in my 2020 book review... Kind Regards...

  15. 5 out of 5

    Val Mathews

    Great book on the craft of writing fiction. It's a unique look behind the scenes, into an editor's head--five editors! It gives clear examples to help you understand what it means to head hop, info dump, feed the reader information, etc. I recommend this book to all my writer friends and clients. Great book on the craft of writing fiction. It's a unique look behind the scenes, into an editor's head--five editors! It gives clear examples to help you understand what it means to head hop, info dump, feed the reader information, etc. I recommend this book to all my writer friends and clients.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Kay Oliver

    Handy dandy editing book This book is packed with great info. Several editors weigh in on each subject all with different useful but not conflicting ideas. Whatever your bad writing habits are, you will undoubtedly find help within these pages.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Terri Gostola

    This book gave me a lot to think about. I liked how the five different editors each had a different take on the twelve fatal flaws. The before and after examples were helpful and good learning tools. In the end, I found this to be a helpful resource. I took notes.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Stacy

    This is a wonderful writing aid as it gives the perspective from five editors on how to combat those niggling things we writers do. With suggestions and examples, it's a great book to keep in your writer's toolbox and refer back to when in the midst of writing your novel. This is a wonderful writing aid as it gives the perspective from five editors on how to combat those niggling things we writers do. With suggestions and examples, it's a great book to keep in your writer's toolbox and refer back to when in the midst of writing your novel.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Anna

    Fatal No More! This is a wonderfully pratical writing tool. Loved the insights from the Before and After examples. The end of chapter checklists are invaluable. I'll definitely be checking out the other titles in this series. Fatal No More! This is a wonderfully pratical writing tool. Loved the insights from the Before and After examples. The end of chapter checklists are invaluable. I'll definitely be checking out the other titles in this series.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Nancy Kuykendall

    This is a must read for every writer. The book is geared for writers of fiction, but as a non-fiction writer I gleaned much help from these editors. They not only tell and explain but give clear examples. The book was extremely helpful.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Sara Baptista

    A great insight about writing!

  22. 4 out of 5

    Vicki Arnott

    A book full of practical advice, clearly explained with examples and exercises. This book really helped me understand how to improve my writing.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Kerry

    This was very useful. It took a bit of time to get through, but I feel like I learned some great tips.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Linda Kasten

    C. S. Lakin's books never disappoint. She covers all essential elements and provides relevant examples from which to learn. It will serve as a continued resource. C. S. Lakin's books never disappoint. She covers all essential elements and provides relevant examples from which to learn. It will serve as a continued resource.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Catherine Richmond

    I found the examples, showing the problem, then the solution, helpful.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Peggy Miller

    Great book A must read for all writers who want to get to the professional level. The tips and advice is important in your tool box of knowledge.,

  27. 4 out of 5

    Jonathan

    This is an in-depth book on how to edit your writing. It is very helpful, especially if you use the parts that you need to write your book better.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Waldo Rodriguez

    Great resource for new writers. It'll help catch all sorts of mistakes that you're either making or didn't even know where mistakes. Great resource for new writers. It'll help catch all sorts of mistakes that you're either making or didn't even know where mistakes.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Andrea Kepple

    Gave me a lot to think about. Love the checklists at the end of the chapters and the before and after examples provided to illustrate the points being made.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Kathy Trueman

    This is taken from a blog, but it's well organized and informative. I really liked the format of one issue at a time, tackled by each of 5 editors. Experienced writers will find it less useful than beginning writers, but even for the experienced writer, there is probably good insight in some of the chapters. There are a lot of writing exercises, which I don't bother with, but I didn't find that a reason to lower my rating. This is taken from a blog, but it's well organized and informative. I really liked the format of one issue at a time, tackled by each of 5 editors. Experienced writers will find it less useful than beginning writers, but even for the experienced writer, there is probably good insight in some of the chapters. There are a lot of writing exercises, which I don't bother with, but I didn't find that a reason to lower my rating.

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