I’ve lost count of the number of the people who’ve told me they’re writing a novel. I’ve also met more than my share of successful novelists. Let’s just say that first group of people is a lot larger than the second.
While there are many ways in which a newbie can go wrong, it often boils down to one or more of these common mistakes. 1 Using stock characters
The tart with a heart of gold. The tall black dude who plays basketball. The gruff schoolmaster. The academic with thick glasses. While stereotypes can occasionally be useful as shorthand, they’re only two-dimensional characters, and that’s not enough to engage readers.
2 Writing real-life dialogue
Yes, you read that right. Realistic dialogue isn’t an echo of real conversation. In everyday life, people use a huge number of filler words and meaningless sounds. Like this.
“Oh, hi, Debbie. Lovely to see you…
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