How The “There Are No Rules” Rule Can Set You Up For Failure & Mockery

I’m not sure who started the “there are no rules in writing” rule. It certainly wasn’t an English teacher. There ARE rules. Rules for grammar, spelling, and punctuation bring order and dignity to our language. There are also rules for storytelling, rules for submissions, rules of common sense, rules of general communication that YOU MUST … Continue reading How The “There Are No Rules” Rule Can Set You Up For Failure & Mockery

Are You An Ethical Author? Take This Quiz!

Why in the world would authors need to be ethical? Don’t they make up stuff for a living? Are you one of those writers that does whatever it takes to get a sale? Are you the kind that responds publicly to a bad review? Do you manipulate your public numbers to look better than you really are? … Continue reading Are You An Ethical Author? Take This Quiz!

Weekly Drabble Contest for April 21!

This is the place for a weekly flash fiction contest! The Apples To Apples Drabble!  The Rules:  Write a drabble. A drabble is a 100-word story, with beginning, middle and end. A drabble can be any genre. Make it exactly 100 words. You can do it. That’s what adjectives and adverbs are for. Include each … Continue reading Weekly Drabble Contest for April 21!

Top 10 Ways To Improve Your Writing

You want to improve your writing? It’s oh, so easy and oh, so hard. I’m going to go out on a limb here and suggest that if you are reading this blog then you are a writer. Even if you don’t think you can call yourself that, you probably have aspirations for literary greatness, fame, or fortune. … Continue reading Top 10 Ways To Improve Your Writing

To Share Your Work Now or Later: When Is The Best Time?

Oh, we writers are an insecure bunch aren’t we? Should we share? When we start writing, we’re hesitant and flighty, nervous and fretful. We crave affirmation that we’re on the right track, but we stop so often to share our work, we make little progress. Then it doesn’t help that there are so many book/websites/blogs … Continue reading To Share Your Work Now or Later: When Is The Best Time?

Write A 100-Word Story! But Include These Three Cards!

This is the place for a weekly flash fiction contest! The Apples To Apples Drabble!  The Rules:  Write a drabble. A drabble is a 100-word story, with beginning, middle and end. A drabble can be any genre. Make it exactly 100 words. You can do it. That’s what adjectives and adverbs are for. Include each … Continue reading Write A 100-Word Story! But Include These Three Cards!

Finding Time to Write (With Toddlers in Tow)

By Emily Schneider There’s a scene in Sister Act 2 where Whoopi Goldberg confronts a young teenage girl about joining her school’s choir. She describes the book “Letters to a Young Poet” as follows: “A fellow used to write to him and say: ‘I want to be a writer. Please read my stuff.’ And Rilke … Continue reading Finding Time to Write (With Toddlers in Tow)

Five Awful Things My Work-In-Progress Says To Me And What I Say Back

I have a work-in-progress and I think it hates me. Every day I sit down with this project, set my timer, turn on the music, spend way too much time thinking about font, size, and color, and then work at least an hour. When I sit down with it, I feel it come alive. It … Continue reading Five Awful Things My Work-In-Progress Says To Me And What I Say Back

Free & Not-So-Free Writers’ Conferences For The Poor And Anthropophobic

  It’s Conference Season! Another spring has arrived and you will not be going to a writer’s conference. I’m so sorry. I’m not either. I’ve been trying to get to the ACFW conference in September every fall for the last ten years and I’m not any closer now than I was ten years ago.  I … Continue reading Free & Not-So-Free Writers’ Conferences For The Poor And Anthropophobic

How To Handle Other Commitments As A 10 Minute Novelist

By definition, if you are a 10-minute novelist, then you are time-crunched. You have commitments to your job, your family, and your social life. Because you are a 10-Minute Novelist, you have to find pockets of time here and there to get those words down. But even with all the best intentions, it’s hard to … Continue reading How To Handle Other Commitments As A 10 Minute Novelist

Can You Write A 100-Word Story Using These Three Cards?

This is the place for a weekly flash fiction contest! The Apples To Apples Drabble!  The Rules:  Write a drabble. A drabble is a 100-word story, with beginning, middle and end. A drabble can be any genre. Make it exactly 100 words. You can do it. That’s what adjectives and adverbs are for. Include each … Continue reading Can You Write A 100-Word Story Using These Three Cards?

Writing Historical Fiction, or “Holy Cow, This is Harder Than it Looks!”

So you’ve decided to write a historical fiction novel. You enjoy writing, and you adore history, so combining your two loves is a natural step. But before you take that leap into the past, there are a few things you might want to think about… What are you bringing to the table? As most historical … Continue reading Writing Historical Fiction, or “Holy Cow, This is Harder Than it Looks!”