So You Want To Diversify

~ By Meka James So, if you read my title and thought this would be some odd post on financial portfolios you would be mistaken. First you do NOT want me giving financial advice. LOL Numbers seriously make my head hurt. Secondly, this is a writing blog, so you probably know where this is heading. Have you ever thought about adding some diversity to your writing, but then didn’t because you were “scared to get it wrong?” You wouldn’t be the first person. I’ve had writer friends close to me say the exact same thing, and my general thought...

10 Things I Wish I’d Known When I Started Writing

~ By Brighton Walsh 10. This business is a whole lot of hurry up and wait. And, okay, that’s probably not a new one for you. I’m sure if you’ve read even one author’s blog, you’ve heard this. But I cannot stress it enough. It’s basically one giant waiting game—waiting for the call, waiting for contracts, waiting for edits, waiting for blurbs, waiting for covers, waiting for payday! Patience is not my strong suit, but I’ve had no choice but to adapt. 9. Don’t sweat the small stuff. When I started writing my first novella, PLUS ONE, I got hung...

Writing Fresh and Cliché Busting

~ By Rita Henuber This post originally appeared here. Ever been dinged in a contest or in a critique for using a cliché? I sure have. What is a cliché?  Here are a few general definitions I found. A cliché is an analogy characterized by its overuse. It may be true (‘Fat as a pig’), no longer true (‘work like a dog’) or inscrutable (‘right as rain’), but it has been overused to the point that its sole function is to mark its user as a lazy thinker. Being predictable and unimaginative; falling into a groove of human boredom; an...

Know ‘Em, Break ‘Em

~ By Brighton Walsh I think I’ll start this post off with a bang while quoting Nora Roberts from a past RWA conference: “If anyone tells you there is a ‘right’ way to write they are a lying bitch.” Yes, yes I do believe you are correct, Nora. One of the things I love most about writing is the absolute freedom of it. If I get an idea to write about a scuba diver who finds a treasure at the bottom of the ocean, loses his oxygen, and has to get rescued by a mermaid…all told from the perspective of...

How To Be A Successful Hooker

~ By Rita Henuber Hooker? Did you come to the blog thinking I was going to talk about a very old profession? If you did well….  HA! Made you look. You fell for my HOOK. I’m talking about hooks in your writing. Hooking a reader into your story. Grabbing them so hard and fast they can‘t put your book down. So what is a hook? Mary Buckham, in her lecture packet on Hooks and Pacing, says it best. “Hooks create an emotional response from a reader. Not just any emotional response but one that gets under your subconscious, raises a question and...

My Story as a Playlist

~ By Melina Kantor When I tell people that I always, always, always create a soundtrack for my WIP, the response is often, “Oh. Well I can’t write to music.” You know what? I honestly can’t either. I get too distracted and too lost, especially by songs I feel connected to. Music can turn my brain into a sort of popcorn popper, causing all kinds of disorganized ideas to zing around my head. Which, actually is the point. Building and listening to a story soundtrack (a trick I learned from Lani Diane Rich) helps me discover my stories and create...

And then came Annie’s Karma

~ Chelle Cordero Writing a sequel wasn’t the easiest thing I’ve done. I had written series books before: Bartlett’s Rule & Courage of the Heart (Survivor Series); His Lucky Charm & Within the Law (Cousins Series); Final Sin & Hyphema (EMS Series) — but this was the first time I wrote an actual sequel. What’s the difference? In two of my series I did have recurring characters, but it was always another couple who was the main focus of the book. I created Annie and Dave in Karma Visited and the story could have ended there, but it didn’t. You...

Awesome. . . Really?

~ Nan Reinhardt My friend and fellow writer, Liz Flaherty did an article about words not long ago. Her consideration of the word “ordinary” made me go right into Editor Nan mode and start thinking about words, how we use them, and how we misuse them. I confess I am a word nerd. It’s all my mom’s fault—she was word geek too. When my siblings and I were kids, she insisted we learn new words and use them correctly. I also confess to being kinda proud of my vocabulary, which although not extraordinary, does probably qualify as extensive by any...

World Bending

~ By Molly Jameson I had a reputation for exaggerating as a kid. I liked to think of it as creative license. I don’t object to reality necessarily, so much as I’d like to rearrange some things to make it entertaining. So it makes sense for me as an author to bend the living world to my will, to make it fit the story I want to tell. My thought process was fairly straightforward. I like to look at gorgeous international destinations, designer clothes and shoes, and many of my dream holiday spots are museums and old buildings rather...

What I Screw Up

~ By Laura Trentham  All right folks, we are about to get down and dirty with sentence mechanics here… If you’ve gone through the editing process with a good editor, this post might not apply, but if you haven’t, then read on. I’m going to talk about two bad habits I am still learning to shake—Autonomous body parts (Abp’s) and Simultaneous actions (SA). I’ve learned these abbreviations by heart because I saw them so much from my editor☺. I still struggle with this in my first drafts, but at least now I can recognize and fix them before shipping them...

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