• #Top10Tuesday,  Self Talk

    #Top10Tuesday Top Ten Things You Should Be Saying To Yourself That Will Help Make You More Successful

    In February, I posted, Top 10 Things You Could Be Saying To Yourself That Will Guarantee Your Failure As A Writer  Today I want to do the opposite! 1. Everybody Makes Mistakes.  This is huge! You need to be reminded that every successful writer has a team behind them of editors, agents and publishers that help them make their book the best it can be. Don’t freak out over the errors in your manuscript. Just fix them and move on! 2. Tomorrow Is Another Day. Plan on making every single day the best you can to pursue your goals, but be realistic. Some days, you’re not going to get your words in,…

  • #Top10Tuesday,  Marketing

    #Top10Tuesday Top 10 Reasons Why You Need To Buy “Write A Novel In 10 Minutes A Day”

    This Thursday, my book Write A Novel In 10 Minutes A Day will be released! You can order your copy here!  Today’s Top 10 List is about some of the great advice you’ll find in this book! 1. This book will give you step by step instructions on how to write a novel that you work around your already time-crunched schedule. 2. This book breaks down every single element of a novel: story, plot, genre, characters, setting and three act structure into small, bite sized chunks and helps you sculpt these concepts a little bit at a time. 3. There’s a WHOLE CHAPTER on time management and how to make small…

  • #Top10Tuesday,  Motivation,  Perils of a Mom Writer

    #Top10Tuesday Top 10 Reasons Why You Are Not A Special Snowflake

    You’re a writer! Isn’t it awesome! You have this unbelievable power to turn words into ideas and ideas into stories and then stories into amazing fandoms! Not yet? Oh, it’s coming! You will because you are so gosh darn talented!  Yes, you can put words together as ideas and you can sculpt ideas into stories. But I hate to break it to you, sweetheart, just because you are a writer, doesn’t mean you’re great. It doesn’t even mean you’re good. Do you guys remember William Hung? He was a singer, and by that I mean he sang. But that didn’t make him special, worthy of applause or certainly not Simon Cowell’s attention. Sadly, there are…

  • #Top10Tuesday,  Marketing,  Social Media,  Twitter

    #Top10Tuesday Top Ten Ways To Start Conversations On Social Media

    #Top10Tuesday Top Ten Ways To Start Conversations On Social Media  Your first objective in starting conversations on Twitter is NOT to make a sale. It just isn’t. So when you are making conversations on Twitter, you should ask questions that are NOT yes or no questions. You are looking for a friend. You need to go under the assumption that they are going to LOVE you. No they are going to be amazed by you. This is the assumption. 1. Ask open ended questions. What’s the best thing about this day for you?  What’s the most interesting thing you’ve faced recently?  2. Celebrate with people over small victories. That’s awesome! Tell me…

  • #Top10Tuesday,  Motivation

    #Top10 Tuesday Top Ten Things I Did Right In 2014 That Made This My Happiest Year Ever

    2011 was a sucky year for me personally. Then 2012 got worse. Then, 2013 became the Papa Bear of bad years for me and my family. I was pretty happy that by the end of it, I had a new home, a new town, a new job for my husband, a houseful of new furniture and a chance to start over. I decided that I wanted to do things the right way for 2014. If anything the previous three years taught me that many of our circumstances can’t be helped, so I decided that my attitudes  and actions — what I could control for the new year — would be completely…

  • #Top10Tuesday,  Nanowrimo,  Revising and Editing

    #Top10Tuesday Top Ten Signs You Have Too Much Backstory

    They really should call December CleUMessNoMo, for Clean Up Your Messy Novel Month. And that kind of looks like clueless. I think that’s fitting because many writers, especially new and inexperienced writers are clueless about what to take out of the hot mess that is their Nanowrimo Project. If you have any doubt, this handy list can help you address the backstory problem you may have in your little darling. Backstory is great for writers who need to know the true motivation of their characters. Backstory is not great for readers who are aching for action and just want the writer to get to the point!  Tell the story for crying out…

  • #Top10Tuesday,  Craft,  Discipline,  Motivation

    Top Ten Ways To Improve Your Craft As A Writer

    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. The right kind of greatness, fame and fortune only comes from those writers who spend their time improving their craft. By becoming the best writer you can be, then you’re more likely to attract readers, agents and publishers. How to you get better? Glad you asked! This week’s Top 10 list is just that: 1. Read, read, read. Read in your genre every chance you get. Read the Classics.…

  • #Top10Tuesday,  Craft,  Work-In-Progress

    #Top10Tuesday Top Ten Questions To Ask Your Beta Readers

    Beta readers are the best! They are an author’s second readers. I’m guessing, and don’t hold me to it, that the alpha reader is the author himself. God knows YOU’VE read your book enough, right? Good writers use beta readers’ opinions to iron out the story’s wrinkles, find out what’s missing and see what the writer doesn’t see. You can use beta readers early in your writing journey, say, after the first draft. Or you can wait several drafts into it and then let trusted people read it.  Either way, you may find it helpful to give them specific questions to answer about your manuscript. Today’s Top 10 Tuesday is this! #Top10Tuesday…

  • #Top10Tuesday,  Nanowrimo,  Revising and Editing,  Work-In-Progress

    #Top10Tuesday Top Ten Questions To Ask Yourself When You Clean Up Your Nano Project

    Nanowrimo is almost done!! And if you are one of those gold star, overachieving type, you may be wondering what to do with this little project once it’s all over. (This blog will have plenty of advice in December!) But for now, let’s list a few general tips to consider when fine tune that draft. These all have to do with the general story structure and plot –these are big issues. In fact, you can’t do much more with the development of your story until these wrinkles are ironed out. Are you ready to answer some tough questions? (And have a stronger manuscript as a result?) Let’s Go! 1. Does…

  • #Top10Tuesday,  Nanowrimo,  Writing Prompt

    #Top10Tuesday Top Ten Additional Emergency Writing Prompts for Nanowrimo

    Just a couple of weeks ago, I shared with you Top Ten Emergency Writing Prompts for Nanowrimo. Today I have ten more! The following prompts may just get you started! 1. Describe what everyone is wearing. This is especially for your girly-girls. Go into detail about the honey colored cashmere twin set that the receptionist has on. Have it remind you of your Aunt Grace and the time she took you shopping at Macy’s and you got squirted in the eye by the perfume counter and now you can’t smell Jennifer Lopez’s new scent without thinking of Aunt Grace. Do it. It will be awesome. 2. There’s an annoying noise…

  • #Top10Tuesday,  Nanowrimo

    #Top10Tuesday Top Ten Emergency Prompts For Nanowrimo!

    Are you stuck yet? Don’t worry, you will be. When you are, don’t panic!  Don’t worry!  You’ll get through it! If you get stuck, here are ten writing prompts that might send you off on a tangent, help you finish your book! 1. Put your character in an actual emergency. Food allergies, car accident, flash flood, explosive plumbing, gas leak — none of these are planned. You don’t have to plan yours too. And even if it looks rather deux et machina -ish, don’t worry about it. You can always go back and fix it later. 2. What does your character have in his pocket, purse or glove compartment? Candy? A gun? Drugs? A crucifix?…

  • #Top10Tuesday,  Inspiration,  Motivation,  Time Management

    #Top10Tuesday Top 10 Signs You Are A 10 Minute Novelist (And You May Need To Join Our Group!)

    Are Your Big Writing Dreams Worth Finding the Time? 1. The baby wakes you at 4:30 and after you settle him back down, your first thought is “How many words can I get in before the whole family wakes up?” 2.While watching a crime show, a prosecutor mentions “solitary!” Your first thought? Solitary confinement? That sounds heavenly! I could get so much done there! 3. You’ve said to yourself “one of these days, when I have the time, I’ll get that book written!” Except that you’ve said it so many times no one believes you. 4. You treasure time alone in the bathroom to collect your thoughts and you may…

  • #Top10Tuesday,  Blogging,  Social Media,  Time Management

    How Top 10 Lists On Your Blog Can Feed Your Content Monster

    When you create a blog, it’s like you create a little monster. You have to feed it content. You have to maintain it. You have to disinfect it against spam. You have to bring your friends to come and see it. You have to think about SEO and tags and categories. You have to decorate it with pinnable art. You have to broadcast it to the world with Twitter and hashtags and other things no one thought about ten years ago. And it never ends! The little monster is never satisfied!  A blog is a little beast sometimes. And it’s slobberly appetite can be intimidating. A happy blog (and one that…