What Is Camp NaNoWriMo? FAQs and Helpful Tips

You may have heard of National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) before. It takes place every November for the entire month and it’s a great way to write a novel alongside an active community. Camp NaNoWriMo is similar. Check out this guide to learn everything you need to know about it. What Is Camp NaNoWriMo? Writers…

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Weekly Writing Challenge 23: Write a Short Story About a Vacation Gone Wrong

Welcome to this week’s writing challenge prompt! Vacations are rich opportunities for storytelling. People use them to escape things in their daily lives or find inspiration before making a big change. They’re getaways when people may feel safe to address a problem back home with someone who’s also on the trip or dream bigger.  For…

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Monthly Writing Challenge for June: Plan a Story in Five Plot Points (Two-Part Prompt)

Welcome to this month’s writing challenge prompt! We could all use a little more story-planning practice. This month, I want to challenge you to a two-part prompt. First, develop a story idea and map five plot points for it. You can use scribbled notes with arrows, bullet points, sticky notes, or whatever works best for…

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5 Personality Traits and Experiences Every Protagonist Needs

Every protagonist is different, but readers latch onto certain personality traits more than others. You need to engage their interest to make your character someone who can carry your story. These are a few personality traits and experiences every protagonist needs to do that—even if you’re writing an anti-hero. 1. (Eventual) Determination Some protagonists are…

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Weekly Writing Challenge 22: Write About a Flea Market

Welcome to this week’s writing challenge prompt! Flea markets are great sources of inspiration. Your protagonist could meet someone there from their past or make a new friendship with someone selling goods. Maybe they find a magical item or a family heirloom stolen years ago. Write a short story about a flea market to practice…

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How to Write an Ironic Story: 10 Types of Irony to Consider

Ironic moments in life can make us change our perspectives, laugh, or discover something we didn’t know before. When you’re trying to make them happen in a story, it can be more difficult than you first realized. You may need to learn how to write an ironic story before actually attempting one. Don’t worry—I was…

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Weekly Writing Challenge 21: Write a Situation Where Your Protagonist Has to Change Their Tire

Welcome to this week’s writing challenge prompt! Writers often have to tackle stories or scenes that they have no personal experience with. This week, we’re practicing dealing with that feeling. (If you know how to change a tire, just enjoy an easy week!) When you want to write something completely new to you, there are…

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3 Tips for Writing Better Subplots

Subplots are a challenge for any writer. Your novel or story will have a theme, conflicts, character growth for your protagonist, and some kind of resolution fitting for your work. Writing better subplots requires understanding those things, but also working on your underlying plotlines as individual stories. How do you even learn to do that?…

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Hey there—

I’m emily, founder of

em dash press

I believe you can become a creative writer at any age. Your experience, time, and ability to attend university classes shouldn’t keep you from learning about the craft of stories.