Anthologies Online              Welcome to the Writing Site with an Emphasis on Anthologies



Writers: Subscribe and send in your brief bio and your best writing sample (up to 1200      words total) to apply to become a featured writer. Find free articles and markets to help you get published.  Readers: Find your favorite authors, anthologies, and other books.

  Editors, send in your calls for manuscripts. Find writers and manuscripts to fill your anthologies.


 This website is best viewed in IE

AO Homepage
Amy Lou Jenkins
Writers Wanted
How to Write
Table of Contents
Contact AO
Writing Magazines
About Contests
Featured Authors
Free reprint articles
Amy Lou Jenkins is the award-winning author of Every Natural Fact: Five Seasons of Open-Air Parenting

"If you combined the lyricism of Annie Dillard, the vision of Aldo Leopold, and the gentle but tough-minded optimism of Frank McCourt, you might come close to Amy Lou Jenkins.Tom Bissell author of The Father of All Things 

"Sentence by sentence, a joy to read."   Phillip Lopate, Author of Waterfront

Follow AmyLouToYou on Twitter


Anthologies online participates in various affiliate programs and most links to books and products in articles/anthologies/author or any page offer some referral payment, pay for click or other reimbursement. The payment is generally pennies per click or purchase. Anthologies online also runs paid ads.The Anthologiesonline web site and newsletter are provided on an "as is" basis without any warranties of any kind and disclaim all warranties, including the warranty of merchantability, non-infringement of third parties' rights, and the warranty of fitness for particular purpose. No person or organization makes any warranties about the accuracy, reliability, completeness, or timeliness of the material, services, software text, graphics and links.  Any communication is generally considered to be nonconfidential. See Privacy Policy.


How To Be A Better Writer
by Craig Lock

"If a man has talent and cannot use it, he has failed. If he has a talent and uses only half of it, he has partly failed. If he has a talent and learns somehow to use the whole of it, he has gloriously succeeded and has a satisfaction and a triumph few men ever know."
-- Thomas Wolfe

This article sponsored by:

The Well-Fed Writer: Financial Self-Sufficiency As a Freelance Writer in Six Months or Less

This article was extracted from a lesson on our Online Creative Writing Course

"I share what I know, so that others may grow." HOW TO BE A BETTER WRITER by Craig Lock Craig Lock By now you have decided what kind of writer you'd like to be:

You either want to write for pleasure or for profit.

To write articles or just to write for your own enjoyment?

Or perhaps just start writing and see what develops.

To perhaps even one day write a book-about your life or about the life of someone you know.

To one day write the novel you always dreamed of...and I believe everyone has some tale to tell. We can all reach out and help others by sharing a little of our little (don't repeat 'little' in such close proximity- "yes sir, boss"!) world. Somebody else said: "No one but a blockhead would write not to be published."... but I don't agree with that one.

I believe writing is for pleasure or profit, but it can be both. That's the ideal to aim (and wish/hope) for. Could I end that sentence with a "preppie" (preposition)?

That was my ideal when I started out in my quest to do something worthwhile with my life after being dropped out of the sky here in "Sleepy Hollow". I try to have a bit of FUN with my writing, because life ( together with all the appendages, like mortgages, bills (but not Bill Rosoman), wives, "hubbies", etc) can be ever so serious.

We spoke about making a writer out of you.

Decide where and when to write.

Which room is most comfortable and gives you peace and quiet?

When are you most creative?

Are you a "morning" or "evening" person, when your concentration is at it's highest level?My body rhythms work best in the early morning, so I'm in bed with my teddy bear and hot "choccie" and pussy cat by 9pm. How utterly boring!

When are you most likely to be undisturbed? I have the strangest type of people (plenty of "weirdos") dropping in to visit "recluse" me. Must be the lot of an "artist"!

Treat your writing seriously and bar visitors - it is your work or leisure time, yet people don't seem to understand that. "When are you going to get a proper job", ask the locals continuously (should it be 'continually'?), as they can't seem to understand us "strange" writers. Nor even my good Aussie friend, Kaye who is visiting at the moment!

What to write about?

This is the writer's principal dilemma.

Write what the market wants, but draw on your world, your unique experiences in life.

Ask yourself this:

How can I best inform, entertain, help or perhaps even inspire other people?

Where to get ideas?
The human mind has the most incredible power and your magination is your greatest asset.

. So use the great powers of your IMAGINATION to the fullest by allowing your creative juices to flow.

Then once you have the idea, RESEARCH well, so you are factually correct.

Accuracy in writing is paramount for credibility- you have to be seen to be an authority on your subject..

If you are writing purely for money (nothing wrong with that!), write what will sell. I only write from the heart, either with serious messages (in my novels) or uplifting material for the human spirit in my non-fiction "work".

Always remember:

There are too many subjects to write about - not too few!

Remember to collect interesting items for later use.


We all have a unique style of writing, in addition to our unique experiences in life... because each one of us is unique, thank God. So just be grateful for who you are , your unique abilities and gifts and count your blessings. Enough on this subject- this is not a new spiritual book!

Style is our natural way of writing: it can be brief, long-winded, chatty, wacky, breezy, light, heavy and so on - like the way we talk. I try and write like I speak: very much to the point, but with the odd "zany" bit thrown in to startle or get a person thinking (or perhaps just wondering about me and where I'm coming from- Mars!).

My advice...

Build on your own natural style of writing... and the best way to do that is to get into the writing habit. Then just be you. Incidentally, a word of seriousness (for a change)... Although this road I have chosen is very rocky and financially uncertain, doing this type of work gives me more fulfilment in my life than ever before, as well as feeling this is the real me. And that's most important.

( Can I start a sentence with an "And". See the next "gripping" lesson to find out).

Write something daily; because practice makes perfect.

Be open to growth, to try new styles or new directions in your writing. I find after I've done a serious book (like a novel on South Africa), I try to write to inform and entertain in a light breezy style. Probably just both sides of me coming out!

You could perhaps try adding touches of humour, your natural humour, of course.

This comes with confidence and confidence comes with more writing. My confidence has increased greatly after my tentative first steps down this track.

I believe the essence of good writing style lies in precision and accuracy.

Therefore omit unnecessary words. Try to think up some examples of everyday unnecessary words and let me know what they are in your homework. One example to get you started: "actually".

Lots more on style coming up. <,br> I hope this information may be helpful to you in your creative writing

Craig Lock

About the author:

Craig Lock is an author of numerous books and the creator of the ORIGINAL online creative writing course.

Craig is a writer, who believes in encouraging and helping others to strive for and accomplish their dreams. He truly believes people can overcome obstacles, rise to any occasion, and accomplish their entire dream with enough faith.

The various books* that I "felt inspired to write" are available at: and (Free chapters)