• Uncategorized,  Writing Prompt

    This Week’s Apples To Apples Drabble Contest!

    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 of the three Apples To Apples cards in the photo. All three. Not two. Not four. ALL THREE. New cards are chosen every week. Paste your drabble into the comments below. Then share this with your friends. The more comments you get on your entry, the more likely you are to win! Absolutely no links,…

  • Creativity,  Drabble Contest,  Writing Prompt

    The Weekly Apple to Apples Drabble! Submit Your Entry Below!

    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 of the three Apples To Apples cards in the photo. All three. Not two. Not four. ALL THREE. New cards are chosen every week. Paste your drabble into the comments below. Then share this with your friends. The more comments you get on your entry, the more likely you are to win! Absolutely no…

  • #MondayBlogs,  Creativity,  Nanowrimo

    Top 10 Emergency Writing Prompts (And Photos) To Help You Through Nanowrimo

    We’re in week 3 of Nanowrimo and if we’re really honest, it’s been a rough month. You may have had moments of frenzy, of fatigue, of despair. And you still have several days to go! Your purpose in Nanowrimo is to just get the raw material of a story. You don’t have to create a masterpiece. You don’t even have to be all that coherent. In fact what you’re doing wrong may be stressing you out. Instead, just write down what comes to your head. Don’t self edit. Don’t go backward. Just put down word after word. The following prompts may just get you over your little funk and get you…

  • Beautiful Words,  Creativity,  Discipline,  Uncategorized

    Top 10 Ways To Make Your Words More Beautiful

    by Katharine Grubb, 10 Minute Novelist “Summer afternoon—summer afternoon; to me those have always been the two most beautiful words in the English language.” ― Henry James Regardless of tastes, preferences or trends, I believe the beautiful calls to us. There is something inside of us that longs for symmetry, for rhythm, for thoughtful curves, for delicacy, for images that spurn our emotions, that bring out in us the good and noble. We all enjoy art for a variety for reasons, but no one can deny how beautiful art serves a purpose. Beautiful art points us to the good in humanity. As we write, we can organize our words  in such a way…

  • Craft,  Work-In-Progress

    Top 10 Things To Give Your Characters That Will Make Them More Vivid

    by Katharine Grubb, 10 Minute Novelist Forget about hair color and broad shoulders and kissable lips. The best stories have characters  that are complex,  well drawn and have such interesting inner and outer struggles that readers can’t help but be fascinated by them. There are hundreds of ways to develop character, from figuring out their favorite ice cream flavors to starting with an archetype and building on it. This is just one little list to set you thinking.  If you only manage a couple of these, your characters will be more vivid, more interesting and strong enough to carry a reader through your story. 1. Give them a secret that…

  • Craft,  Inspiration,  Self Talk

    Top 10 Ways To Respect Your Art As A Writer by Katharine Grubb

    Thank you, Internet!  Because of you, I have to do so little work to expose myself and my family to the works of the world’s greatest artists. Gone are the days when we have to pay for parking at Boston’s Museum of Fine Arts. Now, all we have to do is click the mouse a few times and we are seeing, perhaps not perfectly, the art of the masters. I appreciate this as a writer because I clearly don’t have enough distractions as it is. But I also can appreciate it because I believe that writing is an art. I also believe that like the great painters of western civilization,…

  • Beautiful Words,  Craft

    Top 10 Questions To Ask Others and Avoid Being Labeled Another Emily Dickinson by Katharine Grubb, 10 Minute Novelists

    If you are a writer, then it is likely that you prefer to be isolated from the rest of the world. You spend your days thinking up great stories, making them as perfect as you possibly can. You may create that ideal lover, that ideal setting or that ideal story that you believe is the only story worth telling, at least for now. You may often be so engrossed in the creation of your little world that you forget that when the story is over, you may have to share it. And that thought makes you want to pretend you’re Emily Dickinson. Emily Dickinson was an American poet who lived…

  • #MondayBlogs,  Craft,  Creativity,  Uncategorized

    Top 10 Ways To Find Inspiration For Your Main Character by Katharine Grubb, 10 Minute Novelist

    If we’re creating the right kinds of characters, they will feel like real people. They would have a clear description, a consistent personality, strong objectives, bad habits and body odor. But where do we start when it comes to creating them? I don’t think there is one right answer. But if you’re looking for inspiration, or you want a clearer picture, consider this list: Top Ten Ways To Find Inspiration For Your Main Character 1. Pick an Archetype In the beginning of your creation consider looking at basic tropes often used in fiction.The archetypes are generally defined by their role and their basic reaction to the story. You know these. You’ve recognized…

  • Discipline,  Inspiration,  Motivation,  Self Talk

    10 Destructive, Cowardly Lies I Had To Discard So I Could Become A Writer

    This is one of my favorite blog posts. I’m bringing it back from 2014 because I think we could all use a fresh reminder!  We don’t get in this business to be comfortable. We get in this business because the drive to create is bigger than the drive to be accepted. It takes guts and courage to throw your words to the world. And if lies are keeping you back, then you need to put them in the toilet with the rest of the ca-ca in your life.  I’ve overcome a lot of lies to get where I am today. That alone makes me a success. Not sales, not followers…

  • Creativity

    Bad Day for Words? Easing the Struggle to Write — a Guest Post by Christine Hennebury

    I have over 20,000 people who follow me on Twitter. That means that potentially that many can read about what I ate for lunch (or more important stuff if I choose to tell them!)  I have nearly 400 friends on Facebook from all over the world. That means that potentially every story, heartbreak, and bad day can be told to them pretty quickly. Then I lead a group of writers on Facebook of over 1700 people worldwide and I am not shy about telling them about my struggles and victories. It’s from these groups that I have found some of dearest people in the world. My guest writer is Christine…

  • Nanowrimo,  Organization,  Uncategorized,  Work-In-Progress

    I DID IT! I’M A NANO WINNER! (Now, What My Project Is, And What It Is Not!)

    I did it! Despite going away for a week, having no plan, no outline and no idea what I was doing, I put in the necessary 50,000 words required for National Novel Writing Month. So, I won! I’m a winner! WOO-HOO! Now before I get too excited, I need to realize that word count alone doth not a novel make. Oh my. No. So this little blog entry is to explain what my particular messy 50K word work-in-progress is and is not. What It is: A long brain spew. This isn’t a bad thing. I really believe that the best books resemble icebergs. What is read in the published form is only the tip. This is a critical part…

  • #MondayBlogs,  Craft,  Creativity,  Nanowrimo

    The Schlemeil, Schlamazel Hassenpfeffer Incorporated Method To Nanowrimo (Or How ’80s Pop Culture Can Make You A Better Writer)

    Nanowrimo is National Novel Writing Month. For 30 days in November every year, hundreds of thousands of writers all over the world try to get 50,000 words on paper. In a perfect world, these words would be brilliant and profound. It’s far more likely that the words are a big hot mess. If you are participating, then you know that you only have a week left to get your words in. You Can Do This! If you have 10K or less to do by November 30, this is manageable. If you have much more than that, do the best you can. Walk in grace and go easy on yourself. And…

  • #MondayBlogs,  Craft,  Creativity,  Nanowrimo,  Work-In-Progress,  Writing Prompt

    Even More Top Ten Emergency Writing Prompts for Nanowrimo!

    Last week I suggested ten emergency writing prompts for Nanowrimo. Here are 10 more! 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? A hundred thousand dollars in cash? Microfilm? A flash drive? A recording? An epi-pen? A switchblade?  He remembers!  And it uses it, just as the right time…

  • Inspiration,  Perils of a Mom Writer

    How I Write: The Image, The Reality, and The Twitter Jokes

      This morning I woke up with a backache. I decided I would postpone the start of my day until after I felt better. So, what do you do with a little extra time on your hands? You hang out on Twitter! What luck! #HowIWrite was trending! I enjoyed very much reading suggestions from writers all over the world on the specifics of their process.   You know, the hows of our writing is similar. We all sit with keyboards (a few with notebooks), we all daydream, we all fiddle with music and other ambient issues, we all drink ungodly amounts of coffee or tea and we all work at this.…