The blog has disappeared, but I will re-post them here, as the content is still valid.
A is for:
As in active voice rather than passive voice. This is regarded as the ideal form as it conveys the action in a more vivid form. It uses the active form of the verb rather than the passive one (which usually is accompanied by some form of the verb “to be”)
Example: The ball was thrown by Jason. (Passive) vs (Active) Jason threw the ball.
It is a good idea to check your manuscript for all instances of the word “was” for a start and see how many sentences could be reconstructed to an active form.
Fiction writing often adopts the same concept of splitting a plot into Acts as in a play or screen play. The classic form is the Three Act structure, with each Act having its own beginning, climax and end.
Advances are the amount a publisher pays an author up front in anticipation of royalties earned. If for example the royalty figure is set to 5% and the advance is $5,000. The publisher has to take $100,000 before it needs to pay out any more on royalties. In book publishing (unlike film) if the sales do not meet expectations, the author is not required to refund the difference.
The average NY author makes between $2000.00 and $10,000.00 in an advance. In addition, you DON’T get the advance in one lump sum. You get part when you sign the contract, part when you turn in the manuscript and the rest when it finally goes on the shelf – and that can be one to two Years after the manuscript was turned in! (Morgan Hawke, Writing is an Art but Publishing is a Business Blog)
Agents are employed by authors to represent them in negotiations with publishers and to find a publisher for their book. They take a percentage of any money the book earns. Most New York publishing houses will only consider books submitted by agents. Agents usually have very specific genres of books they will represent, so you have to research that before wasting their and your time by contacting them with a query letter or pitching to them.
As ebook publishers currently accept submissions without going through an agent, and as ebook publishers don’t usually pay an advance on earnings, most authors do not use their agent in negotiations with them.
Preditors & Editors; http://anotherealm.com/prededitors: is an author advocacy group which vets agents to make sure you’re submitting to only those that are reputable.
For info on what to send, see the entry under S for Submissions.
Alpha males are the dominant males in a group. This is usually because of their size, looks, personality and ambition. They are the leaders, the men of action. People follow them.
Who better to advise on the subject than Angela Knight:
Antagonist is the person opposing the protagonist. They may or may not be a villain, as the latter usually have some sort of crime in their opposition. An antagonist may be a mother-in-law who opposes the actions and desires of the woman her son married, causing conflict in the marriage. They not only have to have a personality type that causes conflict, their purpose or goal has to be in conflict.
You will often hear reference to story arc, character arc, emotional arc.
These show the change that has taken place in the story, character or emotion since the beginning. Many authors plot the developments in each aspect like a graph at the end of each chapter. There may be peaks along this arc, but more usually troughs. In other words, things often get worse before they get better.
Morgan Hawke has a good blog on it here: darkerotica.blogspot.com/2005/03/building-character-arc-angst-glorious.html
In the words of Wikipedia, an archetype is an original model of a person, ideal example, or a prototype after which others are copied, patterned, or emulated. They can also be viewed as a stereotype (hackneyed version) or an epitome (prime example).
In common parlance, an author is merely a published writer.