I picked up these "do not do's" from another thread by John Jarrold...seems good advice. My question on number 10, can you bring information in through a character's POV based on what he knows?, his past experiences, people he has met, memories etc? Awful dialogue - read it out loud, does it sound natural, coming from your mouth? Hackneyed plots. No discernable focus to the book or sense of continuity. No Clichés. A complete lack of wit or humor. "Characters" who are only talking heads. A lack of background and foreground. No idea of the commercial market Lots of telling from the outside, rather then seeing the story from specific characters' point-of-view Only use one character throughout a scene, don't jump around. 'Show, don't tell' And, of course: don’t use huge expository lumps. The dreaded info-dump.