Modern Halloween Stories

On Tuesday, Wordsmith Essays gave you some recommendations for some classic horror stories—stories that have stood the test of time and have been frightening people for decade after decade.

Today, however, we’d like to go a little more modern.  It turns out they didn’t stop writing scary stories in 1912—modern writers can make you quiver just as much.  Here are three more spooky short stories to keep you up at night.  Happy Halloween! Read More

Classic Halloween Stories

We’re coming up on Halloween, and if there’s one thing we love here at Wordsmith Essays, it’s scary stories.  We’ve come up with a list of some of our all-time favorites to help you spend the week.  We hope you enjoy, and have a Happy Halloween! Read More

The Importance of Alpha and Beta Readers

Peer review is one of the most useful tools for revision, but most writers are reluctant to hand off unfinished work to readers. This is because excessive criticism during the early drafting process can have quite the impact on morale, even for the most thick-skinned author. That’s why most writers employ two different kind of readers: alpha readers and beta readers. Read More


Giving Effective Feedback

The other day, we talked about peer review and how a writer can use even the worst types of feedback to improve their work; however, even though just about any kind of feedback can be helpful, that doesn’t mean that writers should neglect the art of giving good feedback. Read More

Peer Review

An Effective Peer Review

Peer Review is simultaneously the most useful and the frustrating part of the writing process. It’s hard to overstate the need for proper feedback, no writer is perfect after all, but anyone that’s been in a writer’s workshop can tell you that too often feedback is vague and useless. Luckily, even some of the worst examples of peer review can be mined for constructive criticism with a little work and today we’ll be looking at a few simple techniques writers can use to make the most out of their peer review. Read More

Using Multiple Drafts to Perfect Your Essay

Most good writing occurs somewhere between the fourth and fifth draft, but that doesn’t stop many writers from believing that they can sit down and write a perfect draft on the first try. This idea makes about as much sense as the chain of logic in an early ‘90’s point-and-click adventure game, but it persists because writers are lazy. Some convince themselves they only need to write a single draft so that they can avoid working on an assignment until the last minute and others avoid actual writing by endlessly preparing to write the perfect draft, but in both cases the myth of the perfect draft is an excuse to avoid doing the real work of writing. Read More

Women In Fiction: Unworthy

One of the main recommendations for the book Unworthy (which was sent to me by its Australian Author, Joanne Armstrong, in exchange for my Goodreads review) was the fact that I found its female protagonist so compelling. Not in the sense of liking her, necessarily (though she was likeable enough). Rather, I was impressed by Read More