Train Your Writing Muse

Train Your Writing Muse

Has your writing Muse gone into hibernation? Writing when you don’t feel inspired is a hallmark of a pro. Yet even those who’ve been at it a long time run into dry spells. Writing Tip for Today: Here are a few ideas for stoking the writing fire: Read Up If I can’t seem to make […]

Getting It Right

Getting It Right

The treatment center’s director met me in the lobby. Tall, blonde and willowy, she listened as I outlined my young adult son’s challenges. I told her how at just ten or eleven he’d started sneaking out at night to drink alcohol. Yes, ever since then, he’d abused methamphetamine. The director nodded sympathetically. “He’s over eighteen […]

Writing and Spell-Check

Writing and Spell-Check

I take my local print newspaper, and in a few short years, I’ve watched it go from a wonderful independent to a skinny, USA Today clone. Almost every day, I read several articles with misspellings or typos. What’s going on? Writing Tip for Today: Print journalism is fighting for its life in the digital age. […]

Query, Blurb and Pitch Writing

Query, Blurb and Pitch Writing

You’ve polished your 500 word synopsis, carefully noting word count, genre and main characters. You’ve hit on major plot points and summarized the entire story line. What now? Query, Blurb and Pitch writing awaits you. Writing Tip for Today: If you plan to agent shop, you’ll need a few more tools, including a solid query […]

Writing Synopses: Trimming Words

Writing Synopses: Trimming Words

All novel writers will be faced with writing the dreaded synopsis. These story summaries strike fear into writers for two reasons: They require intimate knowledge of the story and they must be short and succinct. Writing Tip for Today: Let’s discuss some hacks to make writing synopses more effective. Find Your Story Writers can find […]

Why Do You Write?

Why Do You Write?

The publishing world has changed radically. Fewer books are published every year. Yes, you can self-publish, but then you’re cast into a very large sea called Amazon, waving your SOS flag at book buyers. Writing Tip for Today: So why write? What’s in it for you? Let’s talk about some reasons to write: Catharsis is […]

Writing Characters with Empathy

Writing Characters with Empathy

Empathy is a trait where you not only sympathize with another person’s situation, but you share feelings with that person. You walk a mile in their moccasins. How can writing utilize empathy for more effective fiction? Writing Tip for Today: Let’s look at the ways in which empathy can improve fiction: Empathy, Three Ways Psychology […]

Writing Time Jumps

One of the most common questions I hear from novel writers is about writing time jumps, or flashbacks. A novel that is nonlinear can add rich depth to a story, but chaos and confusion are always lurking. Writing Tip for Today: If a novel’s narrative jumps around in time, what are some ways to prevent […]

Writing Supporting Characters

Oprah famously said, “Everybody gets a car.” For fiction writing, we can say, “Everybody gets an arc.” Writing Tip for Today: Writing a character arc for every character in a story helps provide a richer more complete reader experience. Here are some tips: Everybody Wants Give even the supporting players in your story a goal. […]