Overcoming Fear

As your authentic voice emerges publicly, you will experience a range of emotions and, ultimately, new sources of strength. I’ve struggled writing this week’s blog because other parts of my life have demanded all of my emotional energy recently—most notably, a...

A Brave New World

Assessing your work and acknowledging areas for growth will create new frontiers for your craft and, more importantly, an authentic existence as an author. You have been pouring your heart and soul onto the page, traveling through distant lands, exploring characters’...

Imitation & Ingenuity

Emulating and mirroring other authors’ techniques will build your creative muscle and illuminate your writing process. In recent weeks, we have encouraged you to create silence and listen to your inner voice. Perhaps, this quiet introspection has led you outside your...

Calming the Inner Disquiet

Restlessness is a fundamental ingredient of the creative process. Embrace it in order to understand your full artistic potential. Carpe Diem! In 1989, actor Robin Williams starred in The Dead Poet’s Society. As you may recall, this film centered on a small group of...

Silence Is Golden

If noise clutters your mind, you will produce shallow writing. Create silence and empower your authentic voice. As you enter the room, you immediately feel its aching potential. The neutral walls yearn for color, texture, or art—anything to animate the room, to tell...

To Share Your Writing—or Not?

I recently attended two productive and gratifying writing events: one a week-long workshop, the other a three-day retreat. These events were, at once, similar yet very different from one another. On my long drive home from North Carolina, I contemplated those...

Query Letter Essentials

The query letter is effectively your written pitch to an editor or agent, enticing them to read or request your work. It is your first shot at gaining and, more importantly, HOLDING the editor’s/agent’s attention! Keep it simple. I’d use the KISS anagram, but I hate...

Show, Don’t Tell

by Sam “SR” Staley Perhaps no advice has been more instrumental in improving the quality of my fiction than embracing the mantra “Show, Don’t Tell.” I don’t think I fully understood its importance until my second novel was published (which goes a long way...

5 Free Marketing Tools for Authors

by Shannon Bell Authors, especially when starting out, don’t have huge marketing budgets. What money we do have, we want to hold onto. Whether you have a traditional publisher or go indie, marketing your book is still up to you. This means you need to try to use the...

Organizing Your Ideas

Last week, we talked about having a container(s) for your ideas so they don’t evaporate or move on to another creative soul ready to receive them because you are not in a position to use them immediately. The logical next step is to have an organizing principle for...