John Briggs Books

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Know Your Strengths as a Writer

Want to use your writing strengths to reach your readers? My two greatest strengths as a writer are: I can make you think and I can make you laugh. Sometimes … Continue reading

September 28, 2016 · 1 Comment

Favorite Writing Advice: Adding Tension to Your Story

One simple idea can give your story much-needed tension. One phrase — one sentence, really — can help most authors make their stories more tense, more dramatic, more gripping. “If … Continue reading

August 14, 2016 · 2 Comments

Getting Your Book Published: Labor, Luck or Kismet?

Every time somebody says, “Things happen for a reason,” I say, “Yeah, but it doesn’t have to be a good reason.” I’m not exactly a believer in what you’d call … Continue reading

June 10, 2016 · Leave a comment

Can You Learn More From Fiction Than Nonfiction?

Learning a little something from everything you read. I’ve said it a hundred times if I’ve said it once: “Write what you know, read what you don’t.” Writing what you … Continue reading

April 28, 2016 · 1 Comment

Learning to Write from the Ides of March

In honor of the 400th anniversary of William Shakespeare’s death, here’s a blog post from a few years (and one month) back.   It’s March 15, the famous Ides of … Continue reading

April 23, 2016 · Leave a comment

Hidden Meanings in a Story Every Author Finds

Finding messages and meanings in your story you didn’t know were there. Remember that high school or college English class where a student pointed out some hidden meaning in a … Continue reading

April 14, 2016 · Leave a comment

5 Steps to Making Your Minor Characters Exciting

Keep your characters from blending into the background. (This is the second part of a two-part post. Click to read 5 Steps to Making Minor Historical Figures Exciting.) I’ve known … Continue reading

July 29, 2015 · 1 Comment

Why I Wrote Pete Seeger, The People’s Singer

The importance of making your own hero relevant to a new audience. When you write biographies, you get used to the question, “So, why did you write about so-and-so?” For … Continue reading

July 23, 2015 · Leave a comment

5 Steps to Making Minor Historical Figures Exciting

(This is the first of two parts. The second focuses on fiction – Five Steps to Making Your Minor Characters Exciting) Everybody has a story to tell, but some stories … Continue reading

March 17, 2015 · 3 Comments

What’s Your Motivation to Write?

Psychologists say there are two types of motivation: intrinsic and extrinsic. Intrinsically motivated people do it for the satisfaction; extrinsically motivated people do it for the reward. Both approaches work, … Continue reading

March 15, 2015 · Leave a comment

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