Tag: writing tips

Getting Past the Opening: Where to Start your Novel

Getting Past the Opening: Where to Start your Novel

We sit in front of the keyboard, poised, with an idea for a book spinning in our head, and find ourselves afraid to start. After all, we are aware we have one paragraph, or three at best, to capture the attention of the reader. What do we do? My friend and mentor, Elizabeth Searle, offered […]

May 11, 2017 | By | 1 Reply More
5 Tips to Turn Ordinary Interactions into Book Sales

5 Tips to Turn Ordinary Interactions into Book Sales

In the course of a day, even introverted writers (which I must admit, I’m not) have the opportunity to turn everyday interactions into book buzz. This week alone, I was talking to the Macy’s clerk and as she hung the cute new dress I was buying, I mentioned that I had a book coming out […]

May 9, 2017 | By | 3 Replies More
How to Build a Better Book Launch

How to Build a Better Book Launch

You have worked your heart out to write your book, sweated, been anxious, revised, revised, revised, researched, then sweated some more, revised again, copy edited, argued with designers over the book cover and at long, long last…you have a finished book. Congratulations! Now, how to give it a coming out party, to help it debut […]

Common Writing Mistakes: A Beginner’s Course

Common Writing Mistakes: A Beginner’s Course

Just starting out writing? Want to make sure your work shines enough to grow a career? Here are some tips. To Market to Market, and Why You Should Not Write For It I know, I know. You go to a bookstore or read the bestseller lists and it seems like every novel has the word […]

February 10, 2017 | By | Reply More
Eight Tips for Seeing Your Novel with “Fresh Eyes”

Eight Tips for Seeing Your Novel with “Fresh Eyes”

Reaching the end of a draft always feels like cause for celebration. A trip away or simply a punch in the air Breakfast Club style…however we get our kicks, we need to make the most of them. Because soon enough it’ll be time for the next draft and that can be a tough nut to […]

January 31, 2017 | By | 6 Replies More
How Your Day Job Can Help Your Writing

How Your Day Job Can Help Your Writing

I’m lucky to live in a writer’s city, full of writing friends. Every so often we meet, drink cheap wine, bounce ideas around, and complain about our day jobs. We apply together for writing fellowships, arts grants, writing sabbaticals, writing retreats. All in quest of the time to write that our jobs, just ruining everything, […]

December 30, 2016 | By | Reply More
Letting The Story Open The Door

Letting The Story Open The Door

I love short stories. Reading them, writing them, choosing them for Literary Orphans, the online literary magazine I have the privilege to spend time with. In many ways, although I’ve written two novels and am half-way through a third, I feel that short stories will always be my home, and first love. The submitted pieces […]

December 7, 2016 | By | 2 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
Learning as I Go

Learning as I Go

I can’t begin any discussion of what I’ve learned about writing while writing without a disclaimer: I’ve learned things that work for me. Aside from a few college-level writing courses, the books I’ve read on writing, and what I’ve picked up from other authors at workshops and conventions, I am completely self-taught. And I’m constantly […]

August 6, 2016 | By | 3 Replies 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