Articles

On Writing…

 

Play Little Muse, Don’t be Afraid

As writers we want our prose to sing, to paint a lovely portrait, to grip a reader’s very soul and bind them to our characters until our story comes to a gentle and happily-ever-after ending. How can you do that without your inner editor… read more…

 

Finding Mr. Right

Happily-ever-after may be the hardest ever-after to come by. But just as you would never give up on finding Mr. Right, you must never give up on your dream of finding Mr. or Ms. Right Agent… read more…

 

Background Check

You’ve heard it dozens of times. Backstory does not belong in your opening chapters. If you’re like me, as you write those opening pages, your character’s backstory is itching to be told. Thing is, readers want to be caught up in the action not… read more…

 

“I am”, I said. ~ Dialogue Tags

A dialogue tag here and there is perfectly fine, especially if it’s a simple “said”. Tags tell us who’s speaking. However… read more…

 

Thinking IS Work

Each of us has a different way of working. Some of us stare blindly into space. Thinking. It’s hard work – harder than most will admit. Especially those around us – like hungry family members… read more…

 

C is for Critique not Conciliate

I started writing… a long time ago. My teacher, mentor and friend, Patricia Windsor, never went easy on me. She was like the perfect mom. Giving praise when it was due and, just as diligently and thoroughly, handing out the reprimands. Honestly, some of her first critiques of my work stunned me… read more…

 

Layering

Our characters should be as complex and dimensional as we are – yet easier to understand, more logical in their actions and more mature in their acceptance of lessons learned. When we read a story, we want action. We want emotion. We want connection… read more…

 

In the Company of Writers

I’m a writer and still cannot find words to describe how nervous I was about attending my first live  chapter meeting. After years attending meetings ‘virtually’ through online chapters, I thought, who was I, a still unpublished wannabe, to attend a live gathering of accomplished writers… read more…

 

Rejections: It’s Not You, It’s Me

Rejections, of any kind, leave wounds. While some merely graze the surface, others cut deeply. Two of the hardest forms of rejection are those that blindside and those without explanation. Both are common in the writing industry… read more…

 

To Find It, Walk Away

We‘ve all experienced the frustration of searching for something we later find in a spot we know we looked several times before. It‘s only when you stop searching for it that it seems to appear magically. We know this, yet we keep looking. It‘s the same with… read more…

 

Movin’ on Up

When we complete the creative process and move on to the sales process, suddenly we lose focus and confidence. What was it about the story, about the characters or setting that made us feel so passionate? Why would anyone want to read such drivel… read more…

 

Mood of the Muse

My critique partner calls her muse, Tinkerbell. If you recall, though she was adorable, Tinkerbell wasn’t the nicest pixie in the forest. She was jealous and moody. She thought nothing of sabotaging those she loved… read more…

 

It Was a Dark and Stormy Night

Weather, of course, can and should be used to help set the mood of a story. A writer should use all elements of setting to take readers into the scene with the characters, to let them feel the bone-aching chill… read more…

 

The Ordinary Hero

As a romance writer, when I think of heroes, I imagine the tall, dark and handsome man with just the right amount of muscle and invisible wounds. I imagine him patiently listening to me and not only hearing what I have to say but also… read more…

 

To Pitch or Not to Pitch

Last year’s LIRW Editor-Agent Luncheon was my first foray into the world of face-to-face encounters with agents and editors. Each day for more than a month prior to the event, I rehearsed my pitch. I tweaked it. I digitally recorded it and played it back. Hated it. Revised and did it again. read more…

 

Empty Dialogue vs Characterization

Just as we have one chance to make a great first impression when meeting someone, our characters have only one chance to make a great first impression with our readers. By ‘great’ first impression, I don’t mean love-at-first-sight. I mean, they have to show who they are and who we – their creators – want them to be… read more…

 

“You Will be Googled”

We hear it repeatedly – authors need an internet presence.  We should have a blog, a Twitter and/or Facebook account, a website that doesn’t sit stagnant… read more…

 

Show us, Don’t Tell Us

Are you a writer or do you just play one on FaceBook and Twitter? Show us you’re a writer by writing something. Don’t just tell us you’re working on a manuscript. Read more…

 

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