1. You’re letting people tell you that you should be doing other things with your time because writing isn’t a “real job.” 2. You haven’t decided to treat your writing seriously and so no one around you treats it seriously, either. 3. You haven’t made yourself a writing space, either physically or mentally, that isContinue reading “27 Reasons You Aren’t Writing the Book You’re Meant to Write”
One of my super powers as a writer is being able to use 5 minutes, sometimes once a day, but often multiple times a day. I honed this power when I was a stay at home mom with 5 kids under the age of 8. I didn’t have a full day to write. I oftenContinue reading “Using 5 Minutes—Your New Superpower”
I used to have a long list of projects that I wanted to get to. Story ideas, characters, magic systems, plots, love stories—they would shout at me in the middle of the night. I would have to tell them to just wait, that I would get to them. I literally did not have time inContinue reading “The Work of Being A Creative”
One of the most important things that I try to teach my mentees is that the only person whose opinion matters when it comes to your art is yours. Now I say this advisedly because I’ve met a lot of (mostly white, male) writers who won’t listen to any criticism and they think they areContinue reading “Asking Only Myself”
A query is a business letter. It isn’t your application to college. It isn’t the ONE thing that’s going to make the difference between publishing your book and not publishing your book. It’s a query letter that is presenting a business proposition to a business person. Yes, it should be well-written. No, you should notContinue reading “How to Think About Queries”
I’m a believer in beta readers, but not in using beta readers indiscriminately. By the time you send a manuscript to beta readers, you should have a good handle on the shape of the book. I don’t think you should ask them to give you feedback on how to change the plot or characters. YouContinue reading “Questions for Your Beta Readers:”
Sometimes writers spend months just on the first page of their manuscript. They do this because editors and agents often remind them that they stop reading after the first page, if it isn’t good enough to keep going. And truthfully, readers often do the same thing. If they don’t get grabbed by the first pageContinue reading “First Pages”
I had a conversation recently with a mentee about when you know your manuscript is ready to be sent off to either beta readers or to be queried to editors. I’ve always had a simple rule of thumb about this: when I’m fiddling with commas, then it’s time to get some other eyes on theContinue reading “When Is It Ready?”
One of the things I warn my memoir clients about in particular is brain slowdowns or the sense of being constantly distracted. When you go back to events that are difficult to process, a traumatic childhood or a life-changing event, and you try to piece it back together, either just using memories or using oldContinue reading “Brain Slowdowns”
This is apparently a controversial thing to say, but I keep saying it to potential clients. If the book you think you want to work on with me is a book you began writing 5, 10, or 20 years ago, I will rarely think this a good choice. *You* are a better writer and personContinue reading “Write the Harder Book”
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