‘The devil is in the detail’ – Writer Jane Isaac shares her tips with Author Advice

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Jane Isaac writes detective novels with a psychological edge. She lives with her husband and daughter in rural Northamptonshire, UK, where she can often be found trudging over the fields with her Labrador, Bollo.

Her first novel, An Unfamiliar Murder, was nominated as best mystery in the eFestival of Words Best of the Independent eBook awards 2013. Her latest book, The Lies Within, was published earlier this year.

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My Top Three Tips For Writers 

1. Read
Read as much as you can. Indulge. Read in and around the genre you wish you write. It will help you to develop your own style and see what does and doesn’t work for you. It’ll also help you to see what is out there on bookshelves at the moment and what stories sell. This sort of homework will show in your own work, demonstrate to a potential agent/publisher that you are serious about your writing and help you to come up with a story that is not only unique but also commercially viable.

2. Write
Write as much as you can. Everyday. Even if it’s just notes in a notebook, or an entry into a diary. If you are stuck in your work in progress, use a daily scene – a trip to the supermarket, a dog walk, a visit to the book club – flesh it out, describe it using all the senses so that it comes alive on a page. The more writing we do, the more we find the flow of the words and how they all fit together to convey the message to the reader.

3. Research
The devil is in the detail. No matter what genre you write, every book carries some element of research. Aside from the obvious police procedure, settings, areas and events in my genre of crime fiction, there are also the characters we create. We observe the world around us and pick up little traits: the man in the cafe with the six o’clock shadow, the perfectly manicured mum at the school gates, the child with the tuft of hair that sticks up around his crown – all quirks that help us to build the characters in our fiction. Investment into creating and layering our characters gives them the depth to become ‘real’.


 

You can find out more about Jane Isaac via her website, Facebook, or Twitter.

Her books can be purchased here.

 

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About Donna-Louise Bishop

I'm a writer, freelance reporter, creative writing tutor, and blogger, living in the beautiful county of Norfolk UK. In my spare time I am also a wife, a mother to three boys, and a human washing machine.
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