Suraya Dewing's blog

Editing - an important phase of the writing process

In her opening address at Breaking the Code: from published to best-selling author, Linda Langton stressed the importance of editing. Linda is Founder and President of the successful international literary and film consultancy, Langtons International Agency, based in New York. She was not alone. The importance of meticulous editing was a recurring theme throughout the symposium.

What writers do to get on to best seller lists

The Common themes that appeal to readers

Studying what books make the world-wide best seller list can be useful if you want to be the author of a best-seller. There are common themes that appeal to readers and after all, it is readers who create best-seller lists.

Most books, with the exception of one or two, do consistently appear on alternative lists. The list I referred to is a global list compiled by a service called, Global English Editing[1]

Will robots write better stories than us oneday?©

woman sitting between white fluorescent lights


AI writing stories may sound far fetched but is it?

Go into business - write a book

Go into business for yourself – write a book.

Before you cast your first sentence on the page research who might read the finished product. These readers are your customers.

In her article, 'How writing book is like launching a business,' Carol Roth draws this parallel. She headlines several key requirements for both business and publishing a book.

These are: Know your customer; The idea isn’t valuable, the execution is; and, The day you open for business is where the hard work begins.

Published - a dream come true?

It is natural for writers to have the goal of getting published as their main focus. It is a dream come true when, after years of hard work, you hold your own book in your hands with its beautiful cover.

At last we hold tangible evidence of the many hours spent working on the story line. 

The act of getting published validates all that effort. This is especially the case if the publisher is a traditional publisher. Someone else has validated your hard work, your effort.

Writing is a private activity. Selling is a public activity.

Writing is a private activity that requires concentrated, focused effort with attention to story line, characterisation and situation. One glancing mistake and the story line could take a wrong turn.

Then, when the novel is finished and has been thoroughly edited by an independent editor, and a publisher decides to take it on, the writer discovers that they have to undergo a major change in thinking and direction.

MARY By Tony Riches - Book Review


By Tony Riches

Reviewed by Suraya Dewing

Writing historical fiction that doesn’t lose its authenticity while also remaining enjoyable to read requires great skill. As the writer creates the story he or she is drawing on a vast reservoir of knowledge and choosing which pieces will serve the story well is a challenge.

Tony Riches manages this juggle exceedingly well.

A Writer's Dilemma

Three writing tips that will never let you down

When we observe the following three rules for writing, many other sins are forgiven.

So what are those rules?

  1. Make your reader care in your opening paragraph.
  2. Never give your reader a reason to say, ‘so what?’
  3. Make sure that everything in your piece is relevant and adds to the story.

So let’s deal with each of these points individually.

What is success?

I have just returned from a trip to Edutech 2017/Work 2.0 in Johannesburg, South Africa. I will never forget the amazing skies in the late afternoon. They were moody, electric with rolling thunder and lightning and forever changing hue. I had never seen anything like them before.

The trip entailed a 30-hour flight from New Zealand to South Africa and back. It was worth every cramped, economy class hour.


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