Top Ten Rookie Mistakes
1) Failure to use action verbs.
2) Failure to be specific.
3) Point of view character is passive or pluckless
Failure to invest “caring” into the point of view character.
5) Relying on exposition instead of narration (particularly at key points that would be much more interesting dramatized).
6) Failure to be unique (or at least familiar in an interesting way).
7) Failure to surprise the reader globally (how the story unfolds) and/or locally (at the sentence level or word choice level).
8) Failure to unify the story (the beginning doesn’t set up the end, or there are incidents and details that are not tightly integrated into the story).
9) Having nothing to say or saying nothing (the story has a “so what?” feel).
10) Language that is not concise. The story needs pruning.