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Writing and Editing Advice

Create Fictional Languages Without ConLangs

Create Fictional Languages Without ConLangs

Constructed Languages like Elvish and Klingon are a vital part of much speculative fiction. But you needn’t be a linguist like Tolkein or Okrand to incorporate distinct fictional languages into your storyworld. You can use what we know about real-world languages to give the impression your characters are speaking different languages, even if your whole …

How to Go Deeper into Characters’ Emotions

How to Go Deeper into Characters’ Emotions

One of the most frequent comments editors make on new writers’ manuscripts is to go deeper into characters’ emotions. Readers come to narrative stories for an emotional experience. So authors, both of fiction and of narrative nonfiction, need to go beyond telling the reader how a character feels. The goal is to make the reader …

Dictionaries Don’t Know Everything

Dictionaries Don’t Know Everything

One duty of a copyeditor is to check spelling, including whether a term should be solid, hyphenated, or open. Some terms are open, that is, they are written as two words, e.g., living room. If you search for livingroom (closed) at Merriam-Webster, you’ll be redirected to the page for living room (open).

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