Flexible Writing: Russian Dolls

Flexible Writing: Russian Dolls

One of my writing mentors was always suggesting that my book ideas might really be articles. I was always indignant until I discovered how to be flexible. Today, let’s talk about some ways we can all be more flexible in our writing with the Russian Dolls method. Writing Tip for Today: If you’ve been working […]

The JUST Drawer

The JUST Drawer

Despite the sunshine, the morning was late-winter crisp. As a friend and I ventured out for a walk, I poured out my heart. “All three of my sons are messes.” I pulled my woolen scarf higher around my neck. “And not one of them is willing to change. It’s like Russian roulette—do I wait for […]

Writing Emotional Resonance

Writing Emotional Resonance

  Lately I’ve been posting on emotions in writing, and with good reason. Everything we write must come from a deep place of authenticity or else our readers will see past surface or phony stuff and stop reading. Writing Tip for Today: Let’s talk about emotional resonance in our writing. Don’t Chew the Scenery Emotional […]

Writing Character Emotions

Writing Character Emotions

For the last few posts we’ve been discussing characters, their emotions and how they play into the overall story as well as the reader’s reactions. A reader today asks, “But how can I write those emotions?” Writing Tip for Today: Talking about the underpinnings of story is good, but as you write your scenes, you’ll […]

Why Stories Need a Main Character

Why Stories Need a Main Character

Student writers often tell me that their novel has more than one main character. While most really mean that they are writing more than one Point of View, some really do have characters battling for the readers’ sympathies. Writing Tip for Today: Here are some reasons every story needs one main character: Multiple POV v. […]

Suite T Guest Post

Today, I’m honored to be featured on the Southern Writers Magazine blog, Suite T. Talkin’ mashed potatoes! I’d be grateful if you popped over for a look! Thanks and keep writing! http://southernwritersmagazine.blogspot.com/

Writing a Platform

Writing a Platform

It’s launch day for my latest book, Prayers for Parents of Prodigals! Over the past few months, I’ve learned so much about building a platform. Writing Tip for Today: Here are a few tips I’ve picked up about growing a platform: Who’s Your Tribe? One of the things I’ve found is that tribes stick together. […]

Changes: Writing Story Characters Who Grow

Changes: Writing Story Characters Who Grow

Most of us novelists are keen to uncover story secrets, to better connect with our readers. Right now I’m reading Story Genius by Lisa Cron, and it’s opening my eyes to a better sense of how I could achieve that elusive magic. Writing tip for Today: How can we write characters who change and grow? […]

Love’s Prism

Love’s Prism

My grown son ran outside to my car in the pouring rain, hauling in the bags of groceries I’d just bought. Before I could ask, he polished the silver for the holidays and then vacuumed the carpet. For nearly two weeks, we laughed and talked and once I even got to hug him. He talked […]

Writing Characters: Why Emotion Matters

Writing Characters: Why Emotion Matters

It’s a new year, but as I coach some fiction writers, I still see many of the same problems as in years past. One of the barriers to readers experiencing your fiction in the most complete way is by giving details about a character rather than painting that character in emotional strokes. Writing Tip for […]