Haunt and taunt your characters, and let them tell the Story. Use the right point of view. Know how your characters are intimately part of their environment. Let them see the world through their own messy, unsure and somewhat magical senses of their own. Don’t let them be arcane and alien. Emotions are very fine, delicate, ephemeral, sensitive things. If you can get them right, you are probably way ahead of the game.
Words DO matter. The perfectly perched word opens up worlds in your heart, and poetry is a dancing lesson for a writer. Respect pacing. Make every sentence earn its keep. Don’t let your reader wander away. Make your story more and more exciting as it goes along. Theme is no minor device – it is the backbone of your Story. But stories don’t have to be perfect, curlicued literature to get the job done: Ideas, not words, drive stories.