Author Archive | Julie

Charting Your Story’s Rising Action

Rising Action is the part of your story that begins after the inciting incident and ends at the story’s climax. (Read a great post by Susan about the inciting incident here.) As Erin explained in her fabulous post about cliffhangers, (that you can read here) after the inciting incident, “the character faces a series of increasingly challenging obstacles.” Here is the graph of this basic story structure that Erin used in that post. What I want […]


Correcting Problems with Pacing

When I read through an early draft, problems with the pacing usually jump out at me first. I might notice that an action scene drags, or a romantic scene zips by without any real connection between the characters. If your own draft feels flat, you may need to work on your pacing. When a writer gets the pacing right, readers connect with the characters and keep turning pages. Narrative pace refers to the rate at […]


Perseverance – Writing Lessons from the Olympics

The Olympics are here! I’ve been watching a lot of the events on television, and no matter which sport I’m watching—cycling, gymnastics, swimming—I’m amazed at the level of accomplishment I see in these athletes. How did these individuals reach this level? How did they surpass everyone else in their field? Some of it is raw talent. But talent alone is not what divides Olympians from other athletes. You could make an argument for a lot […]


Enhance your Writing with Symbolism

An earlier version of this post appeared on Let the Words Flow, but I’ve gone back and updated it for Pub(lishing) Crawl, because I find myself thinking about the power of symbolism a lot lately. This post makes a nice companion to my recent post on motifs, which you can find here. Symbolism is an aspect of literature that makes a lot of people groan. Perhaps it takes us back to those days of high […]


Add Depth to your Story with Motifs!

Motifs—What the heck are they and why should you use them in your writing? I will admit that, as a writer, I have often been asked, “What’s your book about?” but I’ve never even once been asked, “What are the motifs in your book?” It would appear that no one really thinks or cares about motifs, so why would a writer care to include them? The answer is simple—motifs can add a layer of depth […]