Writing through the Slump

Writing through the Slump

During the holidays, I decided not to try to cram in daily writing alongside all the stuff we Americans do during the season. Now I’m discovering that I need a little nudge to get back into the writing routine. Writing Tip for Today: Here are a few ideas for relighting your creative spark. Read Great […]

Writing Book Proposals: What to Do with Rejects

Writing Book Proposals: What to Do with Rejects

Most pro writers who write for traditional publishers have book proposals that aren’t finished manuscripts. Even self or hybrid authors can start a project, only to run out of steam. Writing Tip for Today: Let’s discuss tips for what to do with stalled book proposals or unpublished work: Juggle Projects As you develop your skill […]

Writing: Building Good Habits

Writing: Building Good Habits

 At this time of year, people make resolutions. What about resolutions for your writing life? Writing Tip for Today: What are some ways to build good writing habits? Keep ‘Em Separated The most basic suggestion I give writers is to draft with wild abandon, and later on, edit with precise determination. New writers often get […]

Writing: What’s in a Character Name?

Writing: What’s in a Character Name?

I often see social media posts from writers, asking for suggestions on character names. Here are some tips. Writing Tip for Today: When you name your fictional characters, what should you take into consideration? Cast of Thousands Often, novel writers have large casts in their novels. While it’s tempting (and sometimes comforting) to name every […]

Writing Your Heart Out

Writing Your Heart Out

Writing is easy—just open a vein and let it bleed all over the page. And writing is very hard—to be a successful writer, you need a well-honed set of tools. Writing Tip for Today: What are some ways to take your writing life to the next level? Practice I’ve said a thousand times that good […]

Writing Good Bad Guys

Writing Good Bad Guys

Writers concentrate on our protagonists, spending lots of time creating a three-dimensional character. But what about your antagonist or bad guy? Writing Tip for Today: Let’s look at some ways to make antagonist characters more engaging. No Clichés When we write an adversarial character, it’s tempting to include tropes and clichés to help readers love […]

Writing: Should Fiction Persuade?

Writing: Should Fiction Persuade?

Many fiction writers I’ve known have told me that they intend their novels to educate or persuade readers of something. But is this a wise path? Writing Tip for Today: Let’s discuss some pros and cons of persuasive or educational fiction. Writing from the Pulpit The fiction writers I mentioned above mostly wrote out of […]

Writing Your Character’s Why

Writing Your Character’s Why

Apologies for missing last week’s post—but it gave me time to think about how, when we write fiction, our character’s “why” must be clear to our readers’ emotions. Writing Tip for Today: Here are a few tips for understanding your character’s why: Who Is This? They say all fictional characters have at least some of […]