Welcome to First Manuscript!
This website is a resource for creative writers with tips and advice for improving your writing skills and mastering the art of storytelling.
Whether you’re working on your first manuscript or your tenth, hopefully you’ll find new ideas or fresh insights to help you take your work to new levels.
I challenge you to use the James Wilber technique of stopping whenever you type the verbs ‘was’ or ‘were’ until you find a better way to communicate your idea.
Back in August 2014, I worked with TRG Web Designs to overhaul the First Manuscript website.The results have been spectacular. Here’s a recap.
After you type those magic words (THE END) into your manuscript, you will want to have a few beta readers review it. Here are the instructions I give my beta readers.
Whether you hope to get published the traditional way or plan to self-publish, the word count of your completed work is important. Here’s the scoop.
I’ve compiled the best tips on overcoming writer’s block from all around the web. If your stuck, here are some great ideas to help you break through.
An interesting yarn with engaging characters that takes readers deep into the word of cyber-espionage with author Ryan Quinn explores the issues of media manipulation, loss of privacy, and warrantless spying on U.S. citizens by the NSA and CIA.
To develop realistic characters that engage readers, I use an inside-out character development model. Here is how it works.
Foreshadowing is an essential element of any good yarn. Here are ideas and examples to assist you in improving the use of foreshadowing in your stories.
Is it all right for you to write alright? Here’s what you need to know to get it right.
New writers often struggle to properly format dialogue. The rules are strict and different than prose, but easily mastered. Here is what you need to know.
Novel writing software should speed the process of capturing your words, formatting your work for sharing and incorporating feedback. Here are my recommendations.
I realized if I truly desired to master the arts of writing and storytelling, I needed invest more time and energy planning before writing. These are the eight steps I now take before writing to visualize scenes.
Before writers can describe the essence of a character to our readers, they must first conjure it in our imagination. Here is one of my techniques for developing a catalog of character traits for later use.
After abandoning my third rewrite of my novel, I decided the time had come for some serious plot planning. Here’s what worked for me.
Several years back, I invested significant time implementing a distinctive, professional design for my First Manuscript blog. Over time things evolve and the site's appearance became dated, especially on when viewed on mobile devices. I've updated the site with a new...
For published writers and those planning to publish, having a blog is a great way to build an audience of readers. Meaningful content that provides value to visitors is the first priority. But so having a professional look and feel. I felt that my blog had become...
When my research for my novel-in-progress required hiking in freezing weather, taking notes the traditional way didn’t work well. Here’s a couple of ideas of how to use technology for even better results.
In his debut novel, Sean Keefer weaves a legal-thriller story, filled with dead bodies and romantic interests set in historic Charleston, South Carolina.