Six Ways to Improve the First Fifteen Percent Of Your Novel

This post will dissect the Zero to Fifteen Percent of the First Act of the Three Act Structure. The first fifteen percent of your novel, I believe, is the most important. It encompasses the Hook and the Setup of the First Act. If you’re wondering what they all are, and how it is going to make your story a best-seller––read below.

The Three Act Structure, defined by Reedsy, is “It digs deep into the popular notion that a story must have a beginning, middle, and end, and goes even further, defining specific plot events that must take place at each stage.”

Reedsy.

I’m going to do a part-series on how you can apply the Three Act Structure to your story but more importantly, focusing in on the specific stages, to help you entice the reader to keep reading past chapter one.

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Pariah’s Lament by Richie Billing.

In my recent posts, I mentioned that I am now working for OMAM Publishing as their Content Developer and with great honour, the second CORE NOVEL for OMAM Publishing (the first being CALL OF THE GUARDIAN by J.M Williams)

Richie Billing’s debut novel, PARIAH’S LAMENT has been through heavy editing to make it the professional standard we thrive to deliver at OMAM Publishing. Keep reading below to see what people are saying about the book and where to buy it!

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Seven Perfect Endings for Your Story

WRITING UPDATE: Still working on my novella, Shadow of the Wicked. It’s in the hands of my beta readers and hopefully, by the end of the month, I’ll be looking for cover work and my mailing list subscribers will be the first to see it, and an ADVANCE READING COPY, so make sure you sign up!

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As I promised in the previous post, I had big news concerning my blog and the writing tips I’ve been posting for 2021. The writing tips will slow down. A few will be posted here and there but the majority of my writing tips will be for the people subscribed to my mailing list and on the OMAM Publishing website.
So either join my mailing list above (you’ll also get tons of other stuff) or/ and go to OMAM website.


Here are the Seven Perfect Endings For Your Story

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A New Name in Fantasy

I have some very exciting news. For those that have been following my writing journey, you shall remember my deal to publish my first novel, To Wield the Stars with publisher Fiction Vortex, however, in short, it went bust from COV-19.

And just as the Phoenix

rose from the ashes,

she too will rise.

Returning from the flames,

More beautiful than before.

Shannon Heartz

As a member of the story verse with other authors, we were hung out to dry with meaningless contracts until our Head proposed an idea. To become a publisher. Thus, Of Metal and Magic Publishing was born. Keep reading below to find out how to get FREE BOOKS!

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Five Tips for Editing a Manuscript Without an Editor

So you’ve completed a draft of your manuscript! Congratulations!

What’s next?

Before sending your manuscript out, you’ll want to edit it to correct your mistakes. While editing your own manuscript might seem daunting or hard to manage, it’s perfectly possible to edit all by yourself. In this article, we’ll share our five best tips for editing your manuscript… without an editor.

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Four Productivity Hacks To Write Now

For most authors, mastering productivity is a classic sink-or-swim situation. I believe that even if your novel cracks the bestseller list, and you’re able to pursue this career full-time, it’s unlikely you’ll be focused solely on your next book manuscript and then onto promotional efforts, reader-focused events, and a mountain of miscellaneous messages waiting in your inbox.

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Novella and the Book Blurb

As I mentioned in my last post there has been quite a lot happening in our household and I’ve finally managed to finish the edits for the novella I’ve been working on, Shadow of the Wicked.

I’ve recently completed the third round of edits, synopsis and the book blurb. In the process, I have learnt a great deal in regards to story and character structure. In such a confined space of the novella, it was tough to contain my fantasy building limits but I really enjoyed it and I’ll probably continue to write novellas.


Here is the blurb:

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Five Essentials for a Successful Story

It has been way too long since my last post. In that time, I’ve had a son, Sage Garnet Smith, and I’ve been working on a novella, editing my novel, To Wield the Stars and renovating a house.

I’m in the third rounds of my novella and I should have it completed by the end of October. If you have been following my writing journey (that’s cool if you haven’t) and thinking, why am I writing a novella when I’m trying to publish my first novel, To Wield the Stars? To build an audience for when my novel is ready.

The title is yet to be confirmed for my dark fantasy novella but if you’re interested, I have a poll running on my twitter account https://twitter.com/DouglasWTSmith

In the process, I have learnt a great deal in regards to story and character structure. In such a space of the novella, it was tough but I really enjoyed it and I’ll probably continue to write novellas.

It made me reflect on my other works in, how do I know if my story goal is good enough to support the entire novel? I don’t know but I guess that’s when my beta readers and editor will tell me.

‘In nearly all good fiction, the basic – all but inescapable – plot form is this: A central character wants something, goes after it despite opposition, perhaps including his own doubts, and so arrives at a win, lose, or draw.’ ~John Gardner

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Three Creative Things To Do In Self-Isolation

In this useful post, I write about how to deal with the pandemic by recommending 3 creative things to keep you sane in self-isolation.

We may all need to find some things to do now that we can’t go anywhere.

Whether or not you feel this pandemic is overblown, you will be confronted with the fact that many things you normally do are not available right now.

This is a short list of creative things to keep you sane that you can do for free.

Regardless of what you choose to do, it is important to keep to a schedule. This will give purpose to your day even if you find yourself in quarantine.

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Call Out For Beta-Readers and Critique Swap.

The last few weeks have been excruciating for us all, however in the midst of this crisis, there has been a surge in positive creative energy and optimism in our community. So many of you are getting in touch with your creative selves – exploring new skills and outlets, sharing stories and expressing yourself in new ways. I pray that you and your families and loved ones have taken every precaution to stay healthy and safe.

Self-isolation has forced me to finish the third draft of my novel, ‘To Wield The Stars’ and I am now at the stage for beta readers.

I’m looking for a beta reader and/or a critique partner. I am willing to exchange my writing with someone else (any genre, no restrictions) and give you proper feedback on your manuscript.

TO WIELD THE STARS is a 95K word epic fantasy adventure novel with three main POVs. It’s told in the close third-person past tense and in an episodic format. My novel is part of a shared universe with multiple author’s overlapping series.

Continue reading below if you’re interested to take part in the beta reader process.

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