Avoiding the Character Cliche

This was originally published in the SCBWI bulletin in 2009. I wanted to cut and paste their formatted version, but their new site kept crashing my computer. Hopefully, it will get fixed because it looks really cool over there now! Avoiding the Character Cliché By Joëlle Anthony The very best way to avoid character clichés is to simply not have the nemesis in your young adult book be a beautiful, fashionably dressed cheerleader. If you…

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A countdown of the twenty-five most overused things in MG & YA fiction

Copyright notice: This article is copyrighted Joelle Anthony 2007. If you like this and you want to share, I am thrilled. However, I would prefer that you link to this post or my website as opposed to cutting and pasting it to your blog. If you feel like you really want to cut and paste it, I respectfully request that you take the ENTIRE article and not just the list. Previously, when people have posted…

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The Pitfalls of Hiring a Service to Find an Agent by Joelle Anthony

Originally published in the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators bulletin, September/October 2006 For some writers, the query is much harder to write than the manuscript. However, agents across the board are begging you not to succumb to services like Agent Wizard (http://www.wizards4word.com/agent.html) and Scriptblaster (www.scriptblaster.com) who do the work for you for a small fee. Recently, literary agents have been hit with a deluge of form-type query letters that truly do you more…

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A Questionable Beginning by Joelle Anthony

Originally published in the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators Bulletin, January/February 2005 Beginning an article with a question can be weak at best and a lazy habit at worst. Every time I sit down to write nonfiction a nice stream of catchy questions pop up as  clever potential openings. But can a question really accomplish what a first sentence should achieve? A question seems innocent enough but when you’ve got a 500 word…

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