Creativity Through Divorce

~ By Casey Clipper    I’m getting a divorce. There, I said it. Out loud. Admission is half the key, right? Yeah, right, if only. This is a secret I’ve held close to the chest for quite some time now, only recently finally informing people of my personal plight. It’s embarrassing. Even though I shouldn’t be, I am. So, I’ve kept quiet and tried to go about my daily life. Try, being the key word. I haven’t gone into explicit details about my pending divorce, only placing a vague post on social media. My closest friends and coworkers know the...

From Romantic Romance to Ordered Disorder

 ~ Miriam Drori  Want to know how to approach writing non-fiction when you’re most used to romantic stories? Don’t ask me; I didn’t do it. You didn’t? No. But you’ve published that lovely romance that’s set in a really exotic place called… Jerusalem. You’re right. My romance, Neither Here Nor There was published in 2014 and my new non-fiction book, Social Anxiety Revealed, is out on August 22. There you are, then. There I’m not. You see, I wrote the first draft of Social Anxiety Revealed back in 2004. I was still working as a technical writer then and...

How to Use Your Travels to Make Your Story Sparkle

~ By Rachel Magee Vacations. We all love them. Just the sound of the word can bring stress relief. We plan, research, save for and dream about them all year long. And when the time gets near, we go shopping, buy new outfits and struggle to cram them all into our over-stuffed suitcases. No? Just me? Well, moving on, then. If you’re anything like me, you’re never truly on vacation from writing. I may get away from the norm, but my creative mind is always spinning. Vacations fill me with inspiration for new stories or ideas for my current...

Spooky Noise in the Dark Bathroom

~ By Jeff Salter We writers tend to have vivid imaginations… especially when it’s night time and we’re alone in the house. This is a true story from May of 2014. See if you can figure out the actual solution to this mystery. OR… how would you WRITE the solution? — Tap…clack-click. Tap…clack-click. My ears are more finely tuned to spooky unknown sounds at night when my wife is out of town. I had just gotten into bed, around midnight, when I heard this repeated eerie sound, Tap…clack-click. It seemed to be coming from the bathroom, the door of...

BICHOK, But Then What?

~ By Tanya Agler Note: Tanya’s companion post, Writing During a Family Crisis, can be found here.  We’ve all been there. We’re about to start writing and bam! The robocall of congratulations comes as you’ve won a free cruise to Nebraska if you turn over our checking account number now. A knock on the office door precedes your youngest running in with blood gashing out of his forehead and an ER trip is in your immediate future. A pop-up notification alerts you a prince in Nigeria wants to give you a million dollars because you’re a wonderful person. Okay,...

Irish Alpha Heroes and St. Patricks Day

Happy St. Patrick’s Day!  Our chapter president Casey Clipper has agreed to tell us a bit about writing Irish Alpha Heroes.  How’s that for good luck?  So it back and enjoy.  If you also create heroes based on aspects of your own cultural background, please share in the comments.  Contemporary Romance: What was it about growing up in an Irish family that you wanted to translate into fiction? Casey Clipper: It wasn’t necessarily the growing up in an Irish family but more watching the men, like my father and grandfather and uncle (I have a few, but the one...

Writing During a Family Crisis

~ By Tanya Agler Overall, writing is a rather solitary endeavor. Many people, who’ve never finished a book, believe it’s the easiest thing in the world to let the words flow onto the computer screen or onto a sheet of paper. In reality, many writers have day jobs, families, and responsibilities. Many wake up early to write or stay up late. Some use their lunch breaks or the time after their children go to bed. Day by day, they see their word count add up until lo and behold, they have a first draft and finally a revised and...

Strong Writing Regimen. Strong Body.

~ By Liza Keogh My writing regimen is getting stronger. Fifteen months ago, I formally ended one career and began to write fiction. I had a yearlong arc of transition ahead of me, and the planets seemed well-aligned to support a multitude of big changes in my life. My body is suffering. My hip joints are achy, the herniated disc in my lower back is very testy, and my core strength is a thing of the past. Photographs attesting to what once was survive, otherwise, I might have a hard time proving how strong and limber I used to be. Any of that...

2017, Shakespeare, and a Dose of Inspiration

~ By Rebecca Grace Allen Let’s be brutally honest here: 2016 totally stunk. As a writer and, well, a human, I struggled on every level. My creativity shuddered to a halt. I hit a massive writers block. My relationships suffered. I gained ten pounds. There were times when I wondered why I was doing this whole writing thing in the first place. Then I remembered, it’s because there are stories bubbling up inside me that I have to tell. Stories that I hope will be timeless, ones that will live on beyond me. And sometimes, to write that kind...

Writing is Hard. Why Do We Do It?

It’s the last Sunday of the month, which means that it’s time for one of our chapter PAN members (PAN stands for Published Authors Network, a professional designation within RWA open to members who reach a certain level of sales) to visit the blog to share some of their wisdom and expertise. This month, Mary E. Thompson is here to inspire us with some thoughts on why we write. Which for those of you who are striving to write 50,000 words this month, may feel like an extremely timely question.  Take it away, Mary! ~ By Mary E. Thompson Eight...

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