Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Foreshadowing or Telegraphing?

A lot of time, clients write something that they feel needs some explanation, some explicit foreshadowing. But when the text reaches a new set of eyes, the reader thinks, "Gosh, that's too obvious. Now I know exactly what's going to happen." This means the foreshadowing has drifted over into the territory of telegraphing.  (The ever-prolific Dan Brown's novels often reach this territory.)

For an interesting post on the difference between telegraphing and foreshadowing, take a look here:


Thursday, March 14, 2013

Word count?

Nearly every day I get questions on word count. People wondering how long their manuscripts are "supposed" to be. It's both a tricky question and a very simple one. There are a few specific ranges, which the link below lays out really nicely. But I think it's important not to forget that the story is complete when it's told. That might be a longer or a shorter word count. For new authors where publishers or agents might be less brave about taking a risk, a good rule of thumb is not to exceed 100k, and if your manuscript is longer than that, you can consider splitting it into two novels. If your manuscript is under 50k words, however, but you feel your story is complete, don't despair! The marketing for novellas is getting stronger again, and might be just the place for your writing to find a home.