Writing Craft

Can You Use AI To Become a “Plotter”?

By: Ginger | Posted on March 22, 2024

Some authors like to plot out their novels before they start writing, and others like to fly by the seat of their pants, letting the characters direct the story as they go. However, it’s not always so black and white, with some author’s taking a more hybrid approach, and others switching from plotter to pantser depending on the project. Yet for authors who aren’t opposed to using AI for a bit of assistance in their planning process, it’s never been easier to be a plotter. As Ginger lays out in today’s blog (with some great examples), AI can not only help guide you through the plotting process of whatever genre or style of book you are writing, but it can even do so using the story structure you want your book to follow. So whether you’re using ChatGPT, Claude, Gemini, or something else, plotting has never been easier! Traditionally, there… Read More >

The Author’s AI Toolkit – An Ongoing Series

By: Craig | Posted on March 8, 2024

After exploding into public awareness about a year ago, generative AI seems to be all anyone is talking about these days. First it was simply a really cool “chatbot” idea that seemed like a fun distraction and a way to get some quick answers versus having to do a traditional web search. Quickly, though, it became a looming threat hanging over virtually every industry, just waiting to take our jobs.  But for authors, there is more of an opportunity to make our jobs easier than there is a chance we’ll lose them completely. AI can be used as a tool in a variety of ways to do just that, and for this reason, I’m launching a series of articles on this very topic starting with this first of the series. It’s no secret that I’ve been enthusiastic about Artificial Intelligence (AI) since I first discovered ChatGPT about a year ago…. Read More >

Exploring the Potential of Non-linear Storytelling

By: Ginger | Posted on March 1, 2024

Navigating the world of storytelling can sometimes lead us to question the rigidity of traditional narrative structures recently discussed on this blog. Not all stories fit neatly within those conventional frameworks, yet they can still captivate and resonate with audiences. One intriguing approach to this challenge is non-linear storytelling, where the sequence of events is intentionally shuffled, defying the expected chronological order. This technique has found a place in both popular literature and blockbuster films, albeit with mixed success. Adopting a non-linear timeline can be highly effective in some instances, but it also carries the risk of confusing the audience or disrupting the natural flow of the narrative. In today’s post, Ginger guides us through the nuances of non-linear storytelling to help us master this approach. He outlines the potential pitfalls and shares examples where this powerful storytelling technique can achieve maximum impact. By learning how and when to weave… Read More >

Has the Craft of Writing Improved?

By: Ginger | Posted on February 23, 2024

While some people believe the classics were the pinnacle of storytelling, this way of thinking overlooks how much writing has transformed and adapted over time to become more accessible, diverse, and better able to mirror our complex world. Just as visual art evolved from the simplicity of cave paintings to the sophistication of the Renaissance, the craft of writing has transformed in a similar way, adapting to new eras and technologies. That’s why today, Ginger is diving into the evolution of storytelling, celebrating the leaps from stone tablets to e-books and highlighting how these advances have made literature richer and more inclusive. It’s a journey through the past, present, and future of writing, proving that while the classics will always hold a special place in our hearts, the stories being written today are just as worthy of admiration. I studied History and English Literature at a Cambridge-founded university, and as… Read More >

Which Story Structure Works Best for YOUR Novel?

By: Ginger | Posted on February 16, 2024

Last week, Ginger examined a number of story structures in-depth, exploring the frameworks behind some of the most captivating tales in literature and cinema. It was a useful primer on why story structures are important, and provided great detail on a few of the most popular ones. Yet there still may be some question as to how to choose the structure that best fits your own story, or is most suited to the type of author you are. After all, a Tolkienesque epic and a spicy romance novel aren’t built the same way—nor should they be. In today’s blog, Ginger focuses more on the suitability of these story structures across different genres and writing styles. Storytelling is as varied as the human imagination, and not every structure will suit every narrative or writer. From epic fantasies and adventure tales to serialized television and dark comedies, each structure offers unique advantages… Read More >

Using Story Structures to Write Better Books

By: Ginger | Posted on February 9, 2024

Many non-authors believe that writing a book is as straightforward as jotting down a lengthy email or drafting a report. Yet, as any author who has actually written a novel can attest, there is a big difference between everyday writing and crafting narratives that captivate and entertain readers for hundreds of pages. Perhaps the misconception comes because, unlike the specialized skills required for performing surgery or practicing law, writing seems accessible to everyone and a part of our daily lives. However, this perception ignores the artistry and dedication that goes into weaving compelling stories from the simple thread of imagination. That’s why today, Ginger is shining a spotlight on the scaffolding behind the scenes of great storytelling—the story structures. Structures are the story frameworks that can help guide an author from the germ of an idea to a fully fleshed-out narrative. And just as there are many different ways to… Read More >

Exploring the Fine Line between Inspiration and Plagiarism

By: Ginger | Posted on February 2, 2024

In the ever-evolving world of literature and digital content, the boundaries between drawing inspiration and committing plagiarism are increasingly blurred. Recent headlines have underscored this, spotlighting allegations of plagiarism against prominent academic figures and bestselling authors. In today’s blog, Ginger tackles this intricate and potentially contentious topic, hoping to provide some clarity on the question of what constitutes legitimate literary borrowing versus unethical copying. To achieve this, he will be exploring the “Somerton Scale,” a recently developed methodology designed to specifically grade the extent of plagiarism in creative works. By examining each level and providing examples from popular literature and film, he aims to make it easier to understand the subtleties surrounding intellectual property rights and the principles of fair use. Hopefully this exploration will help us all navigate the sometimes murky waters of this very complex issue. Recently, the headlines have been rocked with accusations of plagiarism – from… Read More >

Conquer Self Doubt and Just Hit Publish

By: Ginger | Posted on January 26, 2024

If you’ve been sitting on the fence about publishing because you’ve been battling insecurities about whether or not your voice is important enough to be heard, fear not: You’re not alone.  Self doubt can be one of the biggest obstacles to overcome in your self-publishing journey, and some of the greatest and most influential authors that have ever put pen to paper are known to have struggled with that same lack of confidence. Yet they somehow managed to push through and the world is better for it.  Today, Ginger shares a personal story that illustrates how this issue hit very close to home with him. This experience impacted him so deeply that he felt compelled to write this article, stressing the importance for authors to push past these fears and just hit publish. Recently, I’ve been spending time with my 86-year old father, talking about his life. I felt it was… Read More >

Crafting Unforgettable Plot Twists

By: Ginger | Posted on January 12, 2024

There are certain books and movies that have captivated audiences not just because of their intriguing plots, but because of their masterfully executed plot twists – moments so unexpected yet inevitable that they permanently reshape our understanding of the entire narrative. When done right, these moments can shake us to the core, leaving a lasting impression that keeps the story in our heads for years to come. To create these plot twists, it’s vital to understand their essence, which is exactly what Ginger aims to take us through in today’s blog.  The art of foreshadowing, subverting genre expectations, and creating emotional impact are just some of the topics that need to be mastered, but the result will be plot twists that don’t just shock your readers, but fit neatly in with your story and characters. Warning: As we’re talking about plot twists and referencing examples from popular literature and film,… Read More >

How to Revamp your Publishing Empire in 2024

By: Ginger | Posted on December 29, 2023

Self-publishing is essentially the same as running a business, with books as your product. That means you can’t just write a novel, hit publish, and sit back as the profits roll in on your publishing empire. Like any business, you have to watch the market and your competitors, improve your existing stock, and make sure that customers are aware of what you have to offer! As a new year dawns, there is no better time to start planning how to improve your publishing business, and to help with that, Ginger has put together a month by month plan of what to look at and what to take action on.  The start of a new year leads many people to make “New Year Resolutions” – goals and promises intended to lead to a happier, healthier life in the months ahead.  Personally, I’m a huge fan of New Year Resolutions – even… Read More >