Fire up Your Fiction

An Editor's Guide to Writing Compelling Stories

Non-Fiction - Writing/Publishing
191 Pages
Reviewed on 05/10/2014
Buy on Amazon

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Author Biography

Jodie Renner is a sought-after freelance fiction editor and author of two craft-of-writing guides to date. FIRE UP YOUR FICTION, besides winning a Silver Medal for Readers’ Favorite Awards for 2014, also earned a Silver Medal in the FAPA President’s Book Awards, 2013, and an Honorable Mention in Writer’s Digest E-Book Awards for 2013. Jodie’s WRITING A KILLER THRILLER is also valued by writers and aspiring authors of many genres, and her third book, CAPTIVATE YOUR READERS, will be out in late 2014. Also look for her two handy, clickable e-resources, SPELLING ON THE GO - Commonly Misspelled Words at Your Fingertips (out now for your e-reader, tablet, smartphone, or computer) and GRAMMAR ON THE GO (out soon).

Jodie is also a well-known blogger, and her craft of writing articles and other resources for writers appear on many blogs, including her two group blogs, The Kill Zone (alternate Mondays) and Crime Fiction Collective (April 2011 to April 2014), as well as her own blog, Resources for Writers, and others.

Jodie presents workshops on the craft of writing at writers' conferences and to writers' groups across North America. See www.JodieRenner.com / workshops for more details. She has also served as judge for several book awards, including Writer's Digest contests.

Jodie has had a lifelong passion for reading, especially fiction. She worked at a variety of jobs before she became an English and French teacher, received her master's degree in literature, and became a school librarian. Somewhere in there, she raised two sons, traveled to a lot of different countries and cities, and moved thousands of miles – twice. Jodie still loves travel and photography.

As a freelance fiction manuscript editor, Jodie specializes in thrillers, romantic suspense, mysteries, and other fast-paced, suspenseful fiction. She is a member of International Thriller Writers (ITW), Sisters in Crime (SinC), and The Federation of BC Writers.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Bil Howard for Readers' Favorite

Jodie Renner has done fiction writers a huge favor by compiling her blogs into Fire Up Your Fiction: An Editor’s Guide to Writing Compelling Stories. She covers subjects that can get a story moving and not only draw the reader in, but hold their attention and keep them turning pages. She covers the issues involved with creating and keeping conflict, tension, and action burning throughout your story and showing rather than telling. She addresses how the market and the reader have changed in the past several decades and how their lack of patience no longer allows the author to wander off on detailed descriptions that did not used to bother the reader. She also discusses wordiness and the use of clichés, as well as cutting down your word count in order to get to the action and keep it moving. She also gives excellent advice on how to make your dialogue sizzle; a problem for nearly every author. All in all, this volume is packed with plenty of digestible literary protein that will feed writers and make them eager for action.

As a novelist who also has a few years behind me, I was extremely appreciative of the insights and reminders that Jodie Renner provided for me in Fire Up Your Fiction: An Editor’s Guide to Writing Compelling Stories. Many of these lessons were taught in my literature and creative writing classes in college, but that was almost 30 years ago and I had forgotten a few things. Additionally, I was unaware of the impatience of modern readers and had been writing in a way that favored the older, more patient reader. Updating my style has become a critical focus for me. Packed with information, accurate and inspiring, Fire Up Your Fiction: An Editor’s Guide to Writing Compelling Stories will help you transform your fiction into a more marketable product.

John Kurtze

I thought an additional review of Jodie Renner's book would be more helpful than my comments. My need of Jodie Renner's book is different that existing writer or beginning writers. I wanted to improve my business-to-business communications. I have posted reviews on Amazon and Goodreads and have focused on writing my review instead of cut and pasting. From the time I read Jodie Renner's FIRE UP YOUR FICTION, I have focused on different areas in her book. Renner's resources and examples are very important to one focusing on improving their writing skills.

Jodie Renner earned this 5 star rating one piece of advice at a time. FIRE UP YOUR FICTION an Editor's Guide for Writing Compelling Fiction.

My reason for selecting any book whether it is fiction or non-fiction comes from an interest in the story line, topic, research, or interest in an author I haven't read. I made the decision I wanted to improve my writing skills. Renner's book was recommended by authors and educators, I asked to point me to a textbook I could set by my computer.

Renner's guide provides me with the writing tools, I need to do a better job of communicating and improve my writing skills, eliminating common mistakes. If any aspiring author is looking for a reference book, they need not look any further then "Fire Up Your Fiction". to the new title "Fire Up Your Fiction",

Anyone in need of a blueprint on how to write a good fictional story needs to read this book. If you are just getting started, Renner will take you step by step through the writing process from development of a story with a strong plot and exciting characters. A beginner will find this book has the answers to their questions. I use email and Facebook to connect with business associates and friends. I wanted to learn how to deliver a compelling message with fewer words.

Authors looking to improve their writing will find "Fire Up Your Fiction" will help them create strong characters, tighten up story lines, maintain the pacing, and wrap up the story. Renner shares the do's and don'ts of good writing by hooking the reader's involvement in the story. If an existing author wants to improve or put more fire into their work, they will find references to resources addressing the writer's concerns. Renner's book will help you self-edit your book, making sure you give your characters a strong natural voice, how to cut down on unnecessary words, give pointers on how to tell the story and how not to lecture the reader.

If you are looking to improve your day-to-day writing skills, business letters, book reviews, or newsletters, "Fire Up Your Fiction" is the answer to your needs. What I found useful was Renner's willingness to share other resource material she has used to develop her editing skills. I have no trouble giving Jodie Renner's "Fire Up Your Fiction" a 5 star rating.

Susanne (C.S.) Lakin, aut

An Essential Guide Every Writer Must Have
Fire Up Your Fiction is a book every fiction writer needs to have. I've read dozens of writing craft books, and this one is a gem. Jodie Renner addresses all the crucial issues and components in a novel and shows with great right-and-wrong examples how to trim and tighten your writing. As a professional copyeditor she brings years of expertise to the fore and examines both the big-picture issues involved in cutting or revising scenes as well as the many micro issues such as clunky dialog and overuse of adverbs and adjectives. As a professional novelist, copyeditor, and writing coach, I can honestly say this comprehensive book covers everything a writer at any level needs to make a novel sizzle.

Jeanne LeRoy

An indispensable guide for fiction writers!,

What a terrific book! Jodie Renner’s Fire Up Your Fiction is a masterful, solid reference for fiction writers whether you’re just starting out or just need a brush up on your fundamentals. Her advice, written in a no-nonsense, straight forward style is easy to follow and to apply to your own work. My only regret is that I didn’t pick the book up sooner.

Los Angeles Writer

Excellent Resource for Any Writer

Jodie Renner has achieved a remarkable feat here--she's distilled everything a fiction writer needs to know to draft edgy, compelling fiction into a short and sweet book. And she's done it by excluding all the fluff other craft books use as filler. Even if you only read one of her chapters it will be worth the `investment' you will make as a writer. It'll take you a few hours to get through it, but it's two hours you can't afford not to dedicate to this book if you care about your writing career.

Of course she includes the core writing techniques required for publishable manuscripts such as show vs. tell, deep POV, natural sounding dialogue, and all the rest. But what's exceptionally useful is that the book is essentially a micro-manual for quick, easy-to-learn techniques to pare down your writing and make it lean and mean. Read this and you will avoid the sort of mundane writing that tries too hard and puts off today's busy readers--or worse, agents and publishers. No matter how good of a writer you think you are, or no matter how complete you think your manuscript is, I guarantee you will find something in this book to improve your writing and to substantially enhance your chances of getting published.

Mark Wayne Adams

“Editing ‘Dream Team’

“After reading Fire up Your Fiction: An Editor’s Guide, I want author Jodie Renner on my writing ‘Dream Team’!

“This book inspired a complete manuscript rewrite using Jodie's professional perspective. I learned volumes about writing and myself in this concise editor’s guide.”

~ Mark Wayne Adams, President, Florida Authors and Publishers Association, Oct. 9, 2014