Tag: inspiration

If Not Now, Then When? If Not You, Then Who?

If Not Now, Then When? If Not You, Then Who?

Let’s face it. No matter which stage of life we’re at, there never seems a good time to do that one thing that we know we want to do: the right time to have children, change jobs, go back to school, or…write that novel we’ve been wanting to write for the last twenty-three years. Why […]

February 20, 2017 | By | Reply More
Writing The Happy Kitchen

Writing The Happy Kitchen

Ever since my last major depressive episode just over a decade ago, I’ve sought to embrace a holistic attitude to my own mental health. For me it’s been a case of both ‘push’ and ‘pull’. ‘Push’, in the sense that, like many others, I’ve experienced some of the debilitating side-effects of antidepressant medication. These include […]

February 3, 2017 | By | 1 Reply More
Sending the Elevator Back Down

Sending the Elevator Back Down

Several years ago, I heard an author say that when a writer “makes it,” it becomes his or her job to send the elevator back down for those waiting their turn. It was a great way to encourage authors who’ve made it to the other side—who got the publishing deal or who’ve seen their book […]

December 10, 2016 | By | 6 Replies More
Pieces Of Me: Rescuing My Kidnapped Daughters

Pieces Of Me: Rescuing My Kidnapped Daughters

“You should be glad you didn’t get your girls back yet,” a friend told me while we were in line at a coffee shop. “Your book will be that much better.” It was 1995, and I had just returned to Alaska from Greece after my first failed attempt to rescue my kidnapped daughters, taken by […]

September 20, 2016 | By | 5 Replies More
When the Words Come Naturally: How Nature Influences One Author’s Writing

When the Words Come Naturally: How Nature Influences One Author’s Writing

When I set out to write my first novel, I knew the setting before I had fully mapped out my storyline. It was a given that FAMILY TREES would take place in Bayfield, Wis., a picturesque town on the shore of Lake Superior. My family had fallen in love with the area long before I […]

September 8, 2016 | By | 1 Reply More
How My Probation Career Influenced My Writing

How My Probation Career Influenced My Writing

It’s always hard to know, isn’t it, which came first? The chicken or the egg. And that’s how I feel about my life as a crime writer, and my previous one as a probation officer. Let’s say my probation career was the chicken. I went into the job in my early twenties, burning with a […]

August 20, 2016 | By | Reply More
Dialogue and Subtext: The Spoken and the Unspoken

Dialogue and Subtext: The Spoken and the Unspoken

Subtext is a key element in transforming blah serviceable dialogue into dazzling dialogue. Why? Because great, genuine sounding dialogue happens at two levels: what is spoken and what is unspoken. What is said and what is meant. Children, drunks, iconoclasts, and people with impaired social skills tend to say exactly what they mean all the […]

August 2, 2016 | By | 2 Replies More
Writing About Love

Writing About Love

It wasn’t until I started writing fiction that I became aware of the widespread tendency to view men’s writing about love, family and relationships as a meaningful reflection on the human condition and women’s as frivolous and inconsequential.  Increasingly there is a will to challenge and redress this prejudice and its consequences and that is […]

July 10, 2016 | By | 2 Replies More
I Used to be a Writer

I Used to be a Writer

“How about I meet you up at the…ah…the…office at the front? You know, the place with the desk?” My husband responds quickly and kindly. “The lobby?” “Well, sure,” I respond, “but there’s another word I’m thinking of here.” We’ve danced this dance before and he knows I’m not going to drop it until the word […]

July 3, 2016 | By | 15 Replies More
Having an Affair With Your Writing

Having an Affair With Your Writing

Recently I completed my first young adult novel. As anyone writing a book can attest, it was a long slog. Personally, I wouldn’t have been able to complete it were it not for two creative sources of inspiration that rocked my world in a major way—Broadway’s Hamilton and Elizabeth Gilbert’s Big Magic. Let me back […]

June 22, 2016 | By | 4 Replies More