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.

Dax MacGregor

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I Socialize at Google+

I Socialize at Google+

I took a test drive on Google Plus, thinking it would be fun to get a sneak-peek at what I thought was pre-beta software. Instead, I found a rather robust social platform.

My initial attraction was G+’s circles which addressed my deep concerns about the privacy of personal information. Now, I find this is where I spend almost all of my social networking time.

Stylish Blogger Awards

Stylish Blogger Awards

I recognize five bloggers who stand apart from the crowd with their creative posts and personal style with Stylish Blogger Awards.

Interview: Terri Giuliano Long

Interview: Terri Giuliano Long

Terri Giuliano Long, author of In Leah’s Wake, shares her experiences in writing and self-publishing her debut novel. She offers insight and recommendations for other authors considering self-publishing.

Condense a Novel into One-Page Synopsis

Condense a Novel into One-Page Synopsis

I decided to enter a writing competition. All I needed to do was send my first fifty pages along with a "highly polished" one-page synopsis. I thought: No problem. I just need to spiff up my first fifty pages and dash off a quick one-page summary. I can do that over...

Choosing a Pen Name

Choosing a Pen Name

When I started this blog, I decided to remain anonymous, signing all my posts as Newbie Author. I worried that, since I planned to blog about mistakes made while writing my first novel, I thought it might hurt later efforts to attract agents and publishers. I've...

Overcome Writer’s Block By Sharpening Your Vision

Overcome Writer’s Block By Sharpening Your Vision

When I find myself sitting staring at the display, or pressing the backspace key in equal proportion to other keys, I’ve often found my block is due to the lack of clarity in the scene I am attempting to describe – or, sometimes it’s because my gut is telling me my approach to the scene isn’t right.

Here is how to break through.

Till, ‘Til, Til or Until?

Till, ‘Til, Til or Until?

I was sure that till meant breaking up dirt; that until meant “up to the time of”; and, when people shortened until in speech, you wrote it as ’til – or maybe just til. But, after a little research, I learned I had it wrong.

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