Wicked Wednesday – Tips for Writers by Sydney Molare

This Wicked Wednesday we’re doing some serious holiday blog hopping. Catch up with me at the Harlequin Paranormal Romance blog and The Writing Playground where I’ll be discussing my latest release, HOLIDAY WITH A VAMPIRE. Leave a comment on either of those blogs for a chance to win a copy of HOLIDAY WITH A VAMPIRE! You’ll get a chance to meet my friend and fellow author — the amazing Maureen Child as well at those blogs, so please drop by.

Also, don’t forget about the next stop in the 12 Days of Chica Blog Tour! It’s my long time friend and fabulous Harlequin Intrigue author, Tracy Montoya! You can check out Tracy’s holiday-themed story by clicking here!

DEVIL'S ORCHESTRASince I’m off visiting, I’ve got fellow author Sydney Molare today to provide some Tips for Writers. Sydney is the author of DEVIL’S ORCHESTRA and you can read an excerpt by clicking here.


I’m an avid reader and I believe my love of reading has helped my writing tremendously. After all, I know a good book when I read it, so I should have a good idea of elements that would make a manuscript into a great read or I believe I do. LOL. Over the years, here are some pointers I always keep in mind when writing:

1. Don’t have too many characters. I usually don’t like to have more than three main characters in a story. It makes it difficult for the reader to follow along when you have so many different story lines going at the same time. After all, you do want the reader to “get” the message, right?

2. Excessive detail bogs down a story. I like to to give small bits of detail and allow the reader to “create” the world in their mind. I don’t like to see the minute details of the chair or drapery or the pattern of the bark on the trees. Tell me what kind of tree, what color chair and the color of the draperies. I can take it from there.

3. Please have the book cover reflect the story. Many times, I’ve seen comments on how the cover has nothing to do with the inner story. Since everyone knows sex sells, scantily clad persons are the rage in covers today but they may or may not be a reflection of the story. And like any reader, if I’ve bought the book because of the scantily clad man, you best beileve I’m not looking for a mystery, western or Christian fiction to be inside. I want what you sold me on: Sex! And if it’s not there:I feel a bit cheated.

4. Write in first person more. I know third person has been the industry standard for years. Many agents and editors rejected manuscripts on this basis alone. However, the tide is turning and more writers should take advantage. First person places you in the action. You are inside the person’s head, understand the impetus behind the actions, etc. Definitely works for me.

5. Take a chance. There is no new story written, however you can make the story your own by adding an unexpected “twist” here and there. If I already know how it ends, why bother purchasing it. It’s the unknown factor that makes me spend my money on a book. And an author that delivers time after time? I’m buying the book as soon as it hits the shelves, no matter what it’s about.

Thanks for having me.

Thank you, Sydney for offering up these great suggestions!

3 thoughts on “Wicked Wednesday – Tips for Writers by Sydney Molare”

  1. Wow! What a great blog you have here.

    Sydney, thanks for the excellent advice. Very helpful. I absolutely love your cover. It’s alive and on fire. I hope you’re having fun on your tour.


  2. Dear Sydney:

    Great advice. My first novel (written 30 years ago but never published) was written entirely in first person and in present tense from one POV. A world of difference from my series which is written in third-person limited from multiple POVs. Of course, my first book was 300 pages and my series is 3,000. By the way, I very much enjoyed being a guest on your excellent radio show. Thanks so much for giving me the opportunity to converse with you on-air.

  3. THANK YOU for the plug, amiga! And I so totally agree with Sydney on everything, esp. #5. So many writers get all bogged down in “the rules,” when the best books happen when you just let loose! (See Cari’s vampires for a great example–she was writing them before vampires in romance were cool again.)

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