• Creativity,  Reading

    Eleven Tips To Help You Be More Creative!

    Who wants more ideas? Who needs a brilliant thought? Who could stand a new insight? A fresh perspective? A story idea? Who needs more creativity? I know I do! I just wish I could turn on good ideas like I turn on the tap. It’s too bad our muse only shows up at inconvenient times or not at all. I believe, however,  that creativity can be encouraged. We can play with our own minds in such a way that can help solve problems and get good ideas. Here’s a long list of ways to be more creative. Try some! And leave a comment if you got them to work! 1.…

  • Inspiration

    Filling Up That Uninspired Empty Feeling

      Feeling empty as an artist? When people say that you need to fill up, they are tapping into a well-loved metaphor about the artist. The artist, we’re going to assume, has a lot to say. They have emotions and connections, stories and accounts, worldviews and interpretations,  images and sentences. An artist pours out their art for the benefit of the hearer, the viewer, and the reader. But in order for them to pour themselves out, they must have something in their heart, mind, and souls first. They need to be filled up before they can empty themselves out into their art. Where do they get their inspiration? Currently, I’m…

  • Creativity

    10 Writing Prompts To Help You Unstick Your First Draft

    Sometimes drafting that story stinks. You’re all excited in the beginning, you can’t stop writing! But somewhere you get stuck. And you may want to quit. Keep in mind, your purpose in writing the first draft 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.   1. Describe what everyone is wearing. This is especially for your girly-girls. Go into detail about the…

  • Character Development

    7 Defense Mechanisms You Could Give To Your Character

    You’ve picked out your character’s eye color, hair color, and favorite ice cream. You have even chosen their personality type, their deep dark secret, and deepest fear. You certainly haven’t ignored their greatest desire and figured out how their objective in the story works with, or against, this desire. So have you thought about adding a few defense mechanisms? A defense mechanism is a way that we handle stress. Defense mechanisms are often involuntary and can be seen as a form of self-deception. Your main character needs one or two because he shouldn’t be perfect. They should have a reason that they react to certain situations certain ways. They also…

  • #MondayBlogs,  Inspiration,  Motivation,  Self Talk

    Top 10 Things You Should Be Saying To Yourself That Will Help Make You More Successful

    By Katharine Grubb, 10 Minute Novelist I believe we can accomplish great things if we get our thought life under control. Good thoughts produce good habits. Good habits produce good patterns. Good patterns help us grow in discipline, which makes us more confident, which allows us to succeed.  I strongly encourage you, as you are facing the end of this year and the beginning of the new one, that you consider what you think about and focus only on the good things.  In June, 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.…

  • #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,  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,…

  • Discipline,  Motivation

    Top 10 Things I Can Do To Build Up My Confidence – By Katharine Grubb, 10 Minute Novelist

    I’m not in a very good place to write about confidence. I’m in a place where my expectations of what could have been are paralyzing my current choices. But if I’m going to go any further in what I do as a writer, I need to get over myself and grow in confidence.  Today I have to return to the most important element in my writer’s toolbox: confidence. I have lots of tools there that are important. Grammar is important. Storytelling is important. Connections are important. Reviews are important. But the most important thing of all is self-confidence. I have to believe, at least most of the time, that my…

  • 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…

  • #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.…

  • Motivation,  Uncategorized

    Nine Questions To Ask If Writers’ Block Has You By The Throat

    You can’t even. You just can’t even. Sometimes the words aren’t there. The ideas are weak and feeble. Your fingers grow numb waiting on a decent thought from your brain. There’s a problem and you can’t quite figure out what it is or why you’re blocked. I’ve been there. And I’ve learned that a little self introspection sometimes is enough to get to the bottom of the problem. Are you blocked because you are emotionally damaged by your project?  Be honest. Not every writing project is a barrel of laughs. Some, like term papers and college essays are kinda important and you need to plow through. Some though, we’ve signed…

  • Craft,  Discipline,  Motivation,  Self Talk

    The Amazingly Easy Short Cut Guide To Becoming A Great Writer (Tongue-In-Cheek Advice for The Lazy)

    Some are born great writers, some aspire to being a great writer and some have writerly greatness thrust upon them. Then, sometimes, neither of those three options apply to us and we have to bushwhack our own path to greatness. Is it just me, or does that sound like a lot of work? Greatness, is, in some regards, overrated. You spend your life toiling away at tasks that you “love” or your “passions” and yet the Pulitzer isn’t passed out to everyone. The odds are against you with every query letter you send, with every proposal you write up, every word you type. Agents reject authors by the dozens, what…