Monthly Topics

Each month we feature a different topic that much of our content will focus on. If you want to write an article for us, feel free to write an article on one of these topics, or do something completely different! Here is our list of topics for 2018:

January: The Writing Life

Submission Deadline: December 8th

How can you cultivate a healthy, productive routine as a writer? How can practices like journaling and people watching sharpen your skills? This month highlights everything surrounding the writing life.

February: Subplots

Submission Deadline: January 8th

How do you craft integral subplots? Whether revenge narratives, love triangles, unfulfilled dreams, family issues, or platonic friendships, this month examines how to weave subplots effectively into a novel.

March: Suspension of Disbelief

Submission Deadline: February 8th

There are many ways authors can cause readers to shake their heads at the implausibility of a novel. This month demonstrates how to avoid inauthentic dialogue, ridiculous sci-fi technology, unrealistic fight scenes, and other pitfalls that undermine novels.

April: Comedy/Satire

Submission Deadline: March 8th

With April Fool’s Day at the beginning of this month, what better opportunity to discuss comedy and satire? Though many writers tend to be overeager to devise drama and shocking character deaths, a dash of humor in a story can be refreshing.

May: Influence & Inspiration

Submission Deadline: April 8th

Writers are often inspired by other authors and books, but how do we prevent plagiarism? What rights do authors have? How are we influenced by what we read? And how can we draw from other authors’ works respectfully? These are the sorts of questions we’ll tackle this month.

June: Middles

Submission Deadline: May 8th

Many authors get bogged down as they try to decide how to progress from their story’s premise to the climax without producing a “sagging middle.” This month explains how to write middles that sustain suspense and eliminate meandering subplots.

July: Learning from Authors

Submission Deadline: June 8th

This month we’ll choose some of our favorite authors and analyze their strengths and weaknesses to see what insights we can glean.

August: World Building

Submission Deadline: July 8th

How do you create a unique yet believable setting for your novel and establish realistic cultures, governmental systems, weather, and landscapes? This month is for all the speculative-fiction writers in our audience.

September: Nonfiction for Fiction Authors

Submission Deadline: August 8th

Fiction authors can’t get away with writing fiction exclusively. Whether it’s a book blurb, pitch, synopsis, or article for a blog, novelists need to write a surprising amount of nonfiction as they pursue publication. This month covers how to write these pieces deftly.

October: Secondary Characters

Submission Deadline: September 8th

Heroes and villains aren’t the only characters in a novel. You also have sidekicks, mentors, romantic interests, and henchmen. This month explores how to write compelling minor characters.

November: Chapter/Scene Structure

Submission Deadline: October 8th

We talk a lot about structuring an entire novel. But what about a chapter, or even a scene? This month concentrates on the composition of individual chapters and scenes.

December: Editing

Submission Deadline: November 8th

You’ve completed your first draft. Now how do you polish it to fix all your mistakes? This month is all about how to write solid second drafts and revise your manuscript.

If you have any questions regarding our topics or submission schedule, please email us at