• Community,  Craft

    Eleven Signs It’s Time To Share Your Work

    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 books/websites/blogs to read about how to be a great writer that it just makes us more insecure in who we are.

  • Craft,  Creativity,  Inspiration,  Interviews With Authors

    Take 5 Friday: Five Questions for Author Glenda Thompson

    On the last Friday of each month, I like to share an interview with an author so we can get a glimpse into their writing approach and practice. This month, I’m thrilled to share Glenda Thompson’s wise words about writing. You can find her answers below and you can find out more about her and her work on twitter at PressRattler , on Facebook at Author Glenda Thompson, or, soon, on her website. Glenda’s novel Broken Toys will be released later this year. 1.     What aspects of writing are easiest for you? Good question. I think character motivations are the easiest for me. My favorite word in the entire world is…

  • Uncategorized

    7 Ways to Spice Up Your Description

    By Firn Hyde There’s nothing more breathtaking than a well-written piece of description, and few things more difficult to write well. Many new writers find themselves getting bogged down in paragraphs of description and still feel like they’re not getting the image in their heads onto the page. Here are seven ways to turn your description from boring to brilliant. 1. Engage the senses Sensory language is one of the most powerful weapons in your descriptive writing arsenal. Many of us make the mistake of writing only about what we see, but to bring your reader into the moment, use the other senses too. Smell is a particularly useful sense,…

  • Beautiful Words,  Community

    How To Leave A Kind Review

    Authors should be a shining example of leaving stellar reviews, be our opinions positive or negative. We know firsthand how much work writing, revising, editing, promoting, publishing, and marketing can be. Whatever our opinion, it can—and should—be handled with grace. Here are a few basic guidelines to ensure this happens.

  • Craft,  Discipline,  Motivation,  Organization,  Time Management

    Take 5 Friday: Five Steps To Make August a Great Writing Month

    August can be a strange month. Either your kids are heading back to school or you are making plans for them to head back (and this year, that might all be up in the air.)  Or maybe you are finally getting some vacation time.  Perhaps you are trying to balance a busy work day and summer fun in the evenings and on the weekends.  No matter what your August looks like, with some planning, you can help make it into a great month for your writing. Here are 5 steps to help guide your writing plans. Identify how much time you’ll have to write. A lot of the time, we…

  • Craft,  Creativity

    Why Write At All?

    Some days I have no trouble getting down what I want to say or describing the dream I had, or my strong opinions about my co-worker’s parenting choices, but some days. Ugh. I can’t formulate a sentence describing how difficult this is.

  • Craft,  Revising and Editing

    Does Your Backstory Make Your Readers Stabby?

    ou've written thousands of words of backstory! You know how his parents met, how he got that scar on his pasty white tuckus, and why he gets all shaky and whiny when he's served enchiladas. This is all-important stuff you told yourself as you dumped it out into the first chapter of your work-in-progress. It sets the stage! The readers can really know him! This will make the story richer! But your character's backstory may be have bored your reader to tears. Here's what to do instead.

  • Uncategorized

    Ten Tips to Help You Self-Edit

    by Christina Consolino One of the most common questions authors ask is, “How can I edit my own work better?” Outside of spending money on books devoted to self-editing or taking time to research the topic, what can an author do? The answer is easy: train yourself to look for items that an editor would nix. One note: As our fearless leader, Katharine, so eloquently suggests—read your work aloud! When you do, some of the following issues might jump out. 1. The classic show don’t tell. First drafts often tell more than show. Sometimes, telling is appropriate. But look at the difference:  Tell: It was winter.  Show: The snow squeaked…

  • Creativity,  Uncategorized,  Writing Prompt

    Take 5 – Five Sets of Idea-Building Questions

    When my stories need a boost, I like to start by picking an object and figuring out its background or how it might fit into my story. Sometimes, this is just a thinking exercise that helps me explore inside the world of my story – I may not even include the object in the final draft. Other times, the object becomes a key factor in the plot. If you haven’t got a story idea at the moment, or if you are feeling a little stalled in your work-in-progress, give this exercise a try. Maybe you’ll get your story moving again or maybe you’ll just have a little fun playing with…