Milly Taiden: Tips For Novice Writers

This morning SlingWords has a Guest Blogger who writes hot, spicy romance. Please welcome Milly Taiden who also writes as April Angel.

Milly told me that she was born in the prettiest part of the Caribbean known as the Dominican Republic. She grew up in New York, Florida and Massachusetts. Currently, she lives in New York City with her husband, her bossy young son, and their little dog Speedy.

Like many of us chicks, Milly confesses that she is addicted to shopping for shoes, chocolate (but who isn’t?), texting with her BFF in England, and Dunkin Donuts coffee. (I'm with you on all those, Milly.)


You can find Milly on Facebook and Twitter or her website

Sharp Change (Black Meadow Pack) is a shapeshifter romance that's sizzling hot.

Mr. Buff is a sizzling novella written under her pseudonym April Angel.

Now, here's Milly with some writing advice.

Tips for Novice Writers
by Milly Taiden

I still consider myself a novice. Every round of edits is like a punch to the stomach and I question how good I really am. With that in mind, I’d like to point out a few things that I’ve noticed since my first book got contracted and I’ve just finished my sixth book edits. Here are my top five tips for novice writers.

1. POV (Point of View). Read, read, and read. Make sure that you’re speaking from the right point of view. One character cannot see his eye color or his face scowling. Ensure that when you’re describing you are speaking in the proper character.

2. Ownerless Body Parts. Novice writers (me included) have a tendency of wanting to write so eloquently that we use body parts to do things without their owners. Example: His hands slid up her body. Whose hands? Where’s the rest of him? So ensure that whenever you’re writing, there’s a body attached to those hands, eyes and lips.

3. Overuse of words (as / and). New writers tend to overuse these two words so much that it can give a reader a headache. How to stop it? Do a search and highlight. See how much you’ve used these words and re-read and replace with an even better one. If there’s a way to reword the sentence so you don’t need it, that’s even better.

4. Telling vs. Showing. One could say: She kicked the door down. Or, you could say: She kicked, a swift movement that splintered wood, bringing down the door with a groan. So often we tell what’s happening versus showing. As writers, it is our job to ensure the reader can visualize what we’re saying. So we need to make sure our descriptions are apt and interesting.

5. Be willing to make changes. It’s hard when you have this idea that you have a great story and then you get a contract. Yay! But then edits begin and you realize that your perfect story needs a lot of work. Don’t get stuck! Editors are only there to make your story better so it can sell. Be sure that you have an open mind and are willing to work with them. Their vision is to keep your plot as you imagined, but ensuring that it sounds crisp and interesting.

Finally, don’t lose hope. I stated above how hard edits can be, and even with the best editor (which I truly believe I have) it can still make a writer wonder how good a writer she/he really is. But you have to just keep going. Take each of the comments/revisions from your previous book into consideration for your next story. It will make edits in the future that less painful. Keep your dream alive.

Takeaway Truth

Thanks, Milly, for visiting today.


  1. Great Writing Tips. Even experienced writers need to be reminded of these from time to time!

    1. Thanks, James.
      Sometimes it's hard to write with so many rules to keep in mind. But as long as we try to remember just a few of those can make a story a lot better :)

  2. James J. Murray ... Thanks for visiting and commenting.

  3. Good morning, Milly. Thanks for appearing on SlingWords today. Good post!

    Best wishes,
    Joan Reeves