Tag: writing tips

May 12, 2014
By Michael Rupured
Comments Off on Pet Writing Peeves: That

Pet Writing Peeves: That

Coming up with ideas for Pet Writing Peeves isn’t a problem. Finding topics that I know enough about to explain, however, is a bit more challenging. “Just because” is hardly sufficient, but that is too often the only explanation that I can offer. Such is the case with my admittedly mild aversion to the word “that.” I took grammar as an elective my senior year in high school. Ms. Stiles — a retired Army sergeant and a truly great teacher — must have schooled us on the rules. My inability to use the appropriate terminology today suggests that maybe I wasn’t paying attention. I’ve come to see “that” in my own writing as a word that is worth scrutinizing. How does …

Mar 17, 2014
By Michael Rupured

Pet Writing Peeves: Pop Culture References

A good writer makes the reader feel like he or she is a witness to events in the story as they unfold. Keeping the reader’s attention focused on the action and dialogue is the goal. Errors and mistakes, when noticed, take the reader out of the story. Ignorance is bliss. Before getting published, as long as the story kept me interested, I could enjoy the most poorly written of novels. Not anymore. Now all kinds of things I never noticed — my personal pet peeves — take me out of the story. If this happens often enough, I quit reading and never finish the book.  I’m in the middle of a book by a favorite author who has had a …

Jan 12, 2012
By Michael Rupured
Comments Off on Experience: The Second Best Teacher

Experience: The Second Best Teacher

I recently sent Addicted (my first novel) to someone who’d read Glass Houses (my first book–a memoir). In the accompanying email message, I said she would likely notice a big improvement in my writing because of what my great friends in the Athens Writers Workshop have taught me about writing.  She replied that she’d love to know more about what I’d learned. This got me to thinking about everything I’ve learned since I joined the group ten months ago.  Sure, just the experience of writing a novel taught me quite a bit. But the real education came from comments and suggestions the other writers made about what I had written.  Here are a few of the more important things they …