More From Beth Daniels

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The best stories grow from who characters are, from what they have experienced in the past and what they will need to deal with in the future. In fiction, these characters might be human, but they... More > might be something other than human. No matter what they are, they need to act according to the needs of the story, and that means they need to be convincingly real to the reader. After all, even if there is a mystery to be solved, folks to be rescued or protected, treasure to be searched out, a villain to be overcome, or love to be found, it is your character or characters who need to do the work. They need to be prepared for the job. You need to build them to fit the requirements. And those requirements aren’t just for insuring that they save the day, they are about the things that haunt them, color the choices they make or stand off from making based on past experiences. This is about portraying characters as though they are real people with real problems, foibles, hopes and dreams. Even if they are demons.< Less
The "I Hate to Write" Guide to College Level Essays By Beth Daniels
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THE "I HATE TO WRITE" GUIDE TO COLLEGE LEVEL ESSAYS: 4 IN 1 does not replace the required text books in English Composition courses but it does explain how to write an essay at this level... More > without using academic words like "thesis". I never understood what that meant when I was an undergraduate, so I don't expected everyone to know what it means...but I do explain what it is in "regular" language. The four volumes grouped together here have appeared in e-book form but never as a print copy. It was probably past time to offer another option. The reason I wrote BASIC ESSAY, BOOK CRITIQUE, and RESEARCH PAPER is that they were the first essays students were required to wrote -- not just in composition class but in other courses. CHOOSING A TOPIC is something that has boggled many a mind. These are my guidelines and enough students told me that the way I detailed essay requirements finally allowed the light bulb moment of understanding the process be lit for them. Hopefully you'll find something helpful, too.< Less
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GEARED UP WRITING STEAMPUNK is a totally rewritten guide to, well, writing Steampunk Fiction. As the 2nd edition, there are elements that remain, some that have been dropped, and new things... More > added. For instance, this time round the research sections on wardrobes, slang, theatres, and weapons has vanished because in the original book this all focused on the Victorians -- the British. Also dropped was the list of authors names, mostly because keeping it up to date in the book was impossible, so it moved to a website. The markets remained and gained a few additions. Other additions are sections specifically on Weird West, the Gilded Age (urban American East), the Belle Epoch (European), Parallel Worlds and Alternative Universes, Time Travel, plus writing the Steampunk romance, mystery, dystopian tale, comedy and adventure story. As well as cover the American West for Weird West, trips to the Canadian West, Australia, New Zealand, and Tasmania are also taken. So get Geared Up for writing Steampunk!< Less
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THE ALTERNATIVE QUILL: WRITING ALTERNATIVE HISTORY The many niches of Alternative History are very popular genres in the marketplace. Urban Fantasy, Paranormal, Time Travel, Steampunk, Gaslamp... More > Fantasy, Dieselpunk, or tales that tweak history into something it never was (either the past or the present). If you are interested in writing fantasy but quest tales aren't your cup of java, flip through the selections here and find the perfect place to land your story on the bookshelves. Beth Daniels (Writing Steampunk, Geared Up: Writing Steampunk 2nd edition, Muse to Manuscript) dips into the various styles of Alternative History by giving examples of published work and making suggestions on what specific niches have to offer and supplies ideas on how to tweak history to your own story needs. Visit her at,, or stop by her blog at< Less

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Giving Back Giving Back By James Jones & Jody Fuson
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