All posts by

Sophia Uhlenhoff

How to Punctuate Dialogue

How to Punctuate Dialogue

Photo by Jake Blucker on Unsplash Punctuating dialogue is often tricky for writers. And this makes total sense because when you look at a page of dialogue, a lot of what’s happening seems contradictory: there’s a period being used at the end of a phrase of dialogue here, but a comma there; on one line, the first word…

Exercises: Get to Know Your Characters

Exercises: Get to Know Your Characters

Photo by Aaron Burden on Unsplash So you’ve found and named a protagonist, gave him a best friend, a dog, a mom, and a few other supporting characters. You’re ready to go! Except, you don’t really know your characters all that well yet. You have their hair and eye color figured out, but their personality traits are still…

Dialogue Tags and Speaking Denotation

Dialogue Tags and Speaking Denotation

Photo by Aleksandra Mazur on Unsplash He said, she said, Gary said. All of these are dialogue tags. Their purpose is letting the reader know who just said, or is about to say, a line of dialogue, which is pretty important if you want your reader to be able to imagine who’s speaking. But there’s more to letting…

How and When to Use Periods, Commas, and Semicolons

How and When to Use Periods, Commas, and Semicolons

Photo by Mark Duffel on Unsplash Congratulations! You’ve finished your book! Well, the first draft at least. Or maybe you’ve gone through and made some big-picture changes… Got rid of a couple plot holes, gave one of your protagonist’s allies a character arc… But as you’re reading through the first couple pages again, like most authors, you realize…

Insecurity and Voice as a Writer

Insecurity and Voice as a Writer

Photo by Christopher Brown on Unsplash Find your voice. That’s a piece of advice writers are given too often, and frankly, it’s poppycock (pardon my British). Why? Because you already have a voice. You’ve been talking since your toddler years, developing speech patterns, favorite words, and maybe even your own catch phrases. Chances are, while driving, you’ve had…

Basic Story Arc Options

Basic Story Arc Options

Photo by William Krause on Unsplash Outlining your novel’s plot can be daunting. Especially for you writers who are more character oriented. Or for those of you who just get so obsessed with the world building you completely forget to include a plot and realize, too late, your novel is actually an anthology of alien cultures. Luckily, story…