I plot. I spend weeks figuring out characters, locations, and flaws. And then I dig in deep. I plot my story out, by acts and beats, down to each and every scene of my story. And, sometimes, those scenes have beats and entire stretches of dialog in the notes. Thinking Through Our Fingers: In the Mind of an Outliner – Arcs and Structure. This is front loading a story with lots of work. I know this. But as a teacher, mom, wife, and all the other things, I realized I was doing more work trying to keep a story in my head than taking theRead More →

Clearly, structure is something we all want to learn about. It’s one of my favorite topics. Structure is the skeleton on which our entire story hangs. In light of that, I wanted to share the most awesome resource I found.Read More →

I’ve been writing – not reading much – for the last week, which is both awesome and awful (because I got the new Anne Rice Prince Lestat book AND Susan Elizabeth Phillips’ Heroes Are My Weakness). Unfortunately, this means no Dating Advice from Romance Novels. Instead, I decided to write about writing. When I first started, I asked for writing books as birthday and Christmas gifts and scoured the internet for someone to tell me how to write. I’ve since learned that the process of writing is extremely personal. My way is my way. And there is a very specific way that works for me,Read More →

One of THE best writing articles I’ve ever read: Simply put, in every social interaction, one person has (or attempts to have) more of a dominant role. Those in authority or those who want to exert authority use a collection of verbal and nonverbal cues to gain and maintain higher status. But it’s not just authority figures who do this. In daily life all of us are constantly adjusting and negotiating the amount of status we portray as we face different situations and interact with different people. Novelists have the daunting task of showing this dynamic of shifting submission and dominance through dialogue, posture, pauses,Read More →

Coming back from a writing dead-end; deadly writing sins; another reason to make your non-writer friends question your sanity; when a crit group sucks the life from your story; incredible writing resource you should already be using, slacker.Read More →

Your characters are fighting, when they’re not headhopping. Creativity scares you. Using your own goals to build character and how to make writing a second book easier than the first. Especially since the first will drive you c-r-a-z-y.Read More →

How to write women if you aren’t one, the best movies about writers, and famous writers get their revenge by noting how many rejections they received.Read More →

I was right. Also, a whole bunch of info on how you’re querying and storytelling: you’re doing it wrong. Well, maybe not you. But a lot of people are. And, how will I know if he really loves me…. no, wait. That’s Whitney Houston. How will I know if I found the right person to critique my writing? Better.Read More →

Busy week, so a little light on links today. But, bonus! I’m going to share more info on each link. You’re welcome. And through the wonders of the Wordpress, I am away at a training as this post goes live. In fact, I’m probably in class right now. Technology is kind of bad ass.Read More →

A lot of good links this week from writing sex and dialogue to eReaders–good or bad? to sexism in reviews. Don’t Skip the Sex by Raelyn Barclay: Some links to awesome writing-about-sex info and how learning about writing a sex scene and the need for true characterization has ruined sex-scene reading for this writer. Kathryn Stockett’s ‘The Help’ Turned Down 60 Times Before Becoming a Best Seller from More Magazine (via James Scott Bell): The title says it all; but if you’re feeling discouraged, read this story before you ever think of quitting. These next two are related: Time for book publishers to fight dirty by AaronRead More →