Announcing the Outlining Your Novel Workbook Software!

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Learn 5 Ways to Take Risks With Your Writing

Learn 5 Ways to Take Risks With Your Writing

We writers are really kind of a whiny bunch. Our Facebook and Twitter streams, our blogs, sometimes even our books are full of discussions about how hard it is to to be writers. There’s a lot of (mostly) good-natured woe-is-me-ing; sharing of commiserative quotes from our patrons, St. Hemingway and St. Plath; and so, so much […]

How to Spot and Avoid Self-Indulgent Writing:

How to Spot and Avoid Self-Indulgent Writing

As writers, we have the opportunity to live lives of creativity, in which we get to craft whole worlds that conform to our every whim. Whether you’re writing your first book or your thirtieth, it’s always going to be a heady experience. But this comes with certain inherent pitfalls. Sometimes all this power can go […]

4 Fun Things to Read (and Listen to) This Week

I’m not doing a regular blog post today, since I’m spending this week visiting my adorable niece and nephew. Just so you don’t miss me too much while I’m gone, here are some goodies to keep you busy! 1. One of My Favorite Posts From the Archives This post from two years ago examines seven important questions […]

6 (More) Ways to Improve Your Book by Writing Humor

6 (More) Ways to Improve Your Book by Writing Humor

Humor is like any other type of writing: setup, payoff, setup, payoff, lather, rinse, repeat. That’s all there is to it! Okay, that’s not all there is to it. Humor is a craft that can be learned and perfected. With that in mind, let’s look at how a joke is crafted. How to Write Funny: Set […]

Don’t Write Scenes–Write Images

When you think about it, the transformative power of the written word is no less phenomenal than the technological miracles of computers, televisions, and smarts phones. Both are alchemy. Technology uses wires and circuits to turn code into the wonder of light and color. Writing does exactly the same thing. Little black squiggles on the […]

ProWritingAid Outlining Your Novel Workbook Promo

Outlining and Editing: Get This Great Software Bundle

This week only, I’m joining up with the popular editing software ProWritingAid to give you a special discount when you purchase their premium license in a bundle with my own Outlining Your Novel Workbook software. ProWritingAid Premium and Outlining Your Novel Workbook together this week only for just $65 (a $90 value). Until February 24th, get the Outlining Your Novel Workbook ($40) […]

Cohesion and Resonance! Cohesion and Resonance! Cohesion and Resonance!

Cohesion and Resonance! Cohesion and Resonance! Cohesion and Resonance!

So many pieces have to come together to create skillful fiction that it’s almost disingenuous to suggest there are only one or two that make or break the story. But turns out: it’s true. And if my marquee-style post title wasn’t enough to give it away, let me spell it out: for a story to work, […]

4 Tips for Writing to the Right Audience

Here’s my somewhat radical idea: Writers don’t need to know who their audience is. And, yes, I know this goes entirely against popular advice, which encourages (even insists) that beginning authors must know their audience. I’ve probably even said basically that somewhere or other on this site. You’re supposed to go so far as to write […]

4 Ways for Writers to Become Better Readers

4 Ways for Writers to Become Better Readers

Anyone can read a book, right? We all become better readers just by reading, right? Learning to put letters together into words and understand what they say—learning to read—that’s a learned skill. But once you’ve pretty much mastered that by fourth grade, you can read anything. There’s no skill to reading a novel. What is there […]

The Role of Angst and Creativity

The Words That Changed Your Life: Discovering What Made You a Writer

For me, it’s almost become a cliché answer: “I write because stories have always been my language. I write because my very first memory is telling myself a story.” “Why do you write?” and “What made you a writer?” are two questions I’m ubiquitously asked in interviews. I can respond to those questions in my […]