Writing Craft

Two Quick Tasks Improve Momentum and Voice

By: Christine DeSmet As a writing instructor and coach, I deal with manuscripts that may have received passes by agents, or are too long, or don’t seem to have a “voice” yet. As a writer, too, I often over-write by 10,000 to 20,000 words in search of my novel’s story. (My cozy mystery/romance manuscripts need

By |2019-12-31T18:54:08+00:00October 7th, 2019|Categories: General, Writing Craft|Tags: , |Comments Off on Two Quick Tasks Improve Momentum and Voice

How to Avoid Writing Burnout When You Write Fiction and Work as a Writer or Editor

Image credit: DepositPhoto Writing fiction is a passion for most authors, who come from all sorts of career fields and backgrounds. At the same time, it’s definitely work, too, to see a story through from start to finish. While there’s plenty to be said for work-life-writing balance in general and also sticking to deadlines when

By |2019-12-31T18:58:17+00:00September 18th, 2019|Categories: General, Writing Craft|Tags: , , , |Comments Off on How to Avoid Writing Burnout When You Write Fiction and Work as a Writer or Editor

Writing Dialogue That Delights Readers

Best-selling author Stephen King once said, “Good dialogue is a delight to read. Bad dialogue is deadly” (181). As readers, we can readily agree, but if you’re like me, an author intent on improving her craft, you want to know how to write dialogue that is a delight. You’re seeking guided practice—some rules. Here are

By |2019-12-31T18:10:19+00:00August 21st, 2019|Categories: General, Writing Craft|Tags: , , , |Comments Off on Writing Dialogue That Delights Readers

Historical Research Class

Lesson 3 People Your characters are the heart of the story, so you want them to be right. What do they look like? What do they wear? What is their occupation? What manners and mores are typical for their times? When you decide on what time frame you have set for them, and where, it

My 10 Rules for Success

From time to time, I take a moment to reflect where I’m at in my life and where I want to go. During one of these reflections, I read about habits of successful people. You should know I define success not only as financial stability, but also about our journey as individuals and what we

By |2019-12-31T18:10:20+00:00June 19th, 2019|Categories: General, Writing Craft|Tags: , , , , |Comments Off on My 10 Rules for Success

How Attending the WisRWA Write Touch Conference was like Writing a Romance Novel

Everywhere I looked, a potential story scene loomed. Who was she meeting in that corner room? Why is she rocking out in front of everyone with her happy dance? That's what attending the Write Touch Conference did to me. It inspired me to be creative and share my tales through the power of the written

Part of the Problem or Part of the Solution?

Imagine this scenario. A young woman has been asked out, repeatedly, by the same young man. Whenever she bumps into him in their small town, he asks her out again. She keeps saying no. He's pressed her for a reason, and she's told him that she just isn't interested in dating him. She doesn't want

By |2019-12-31T18:10:20+00:00May 16th, 2019|Categories: General, Publishing Industry, Writing Craft|Tags: , |Comments Off on Part of the Problem or Part of the Solution?

The Things I Didn’t Do

Like most writers I know, I collect inspiring/encouraging quotes and keep them where I can see them in my office. Somehow, these quotes and thoughts are shortcut reminders of various attitudes and qualities we need as writers: determination, persistence, fired up creativity, the courage to dream big, making course corrections, and so on. You probably

By |2019-12-31T18:10:20+00:00April 24th, 2019|Categories: Writing Craft|Tags: , |3 Comments

Will writing in different genres kill your career?

I’d just finished reading a passage of my WIP to my writing group, and one member was like, “Wow, Dave, it’s amazing to see you write a book with no sex or swearing.” And I was like, “Hell-o. My Fairy Dogmother.” And then everyone in the group was like, “Oh, yeah.” The experience illustrates a

By |2019-12-31T18:10:20+00:00April 17th, 2019|Categories: General, Writing Craft|Tags: |1 Comment

Of Plagiarism and Piracy

I have been writing for a long time. (My first history book came out in 1998) I have 27 books in print, am an award-winning, Amazon best-selling author. But I’ve been struggling lately. Struggling with all the things going on in the writing world, making me wonder why I do what I do – other

By |2019-12-31T18:10:20+00:00March 6th, 2019|Categories: Writing Craft|Tags: |Comments Off on Of Plagiarism and Piracy