FLASH ! FREE Scrivener Webinar, Thursday, May 21, 2015

scrivener coach“How To Use Scrivener to Write, Organize, & Export  Your Book into Various Formats for Printing, Editing, & Publishing”

Thursday, May 21, at 3 p.m. Eastern Time

I’m a great proponent of Scrivener,scrivener logo the “writing” program that lets you organize, format and export your finished work. Scrivener, in beta form, came along at a time when I was tearing my hair out trying to  get control of my first novel. For me, as… Continue reading

The Fat Lady Sings (Again) – to Beat Sheets

CORRECTION: The wonderful Jami Gold has made a correction to this post. Although a number of “Beat Sheets” below are attributed to different authors, they were actually created by Jami herself. She’s drawn from the teachings of Larry Brooks, Michael Hauge, etc. to assemble them, hence their names. The Blake Snyder Beat Sheet was created by Elizabeth Davis. Confused yet?  Don’t worry. All will become clear as you read further.
Two other suggestions from Jami: first, she recommends this link for her Scrivener Beat Sheet: jamigold.com/2013/12/can-we-use-beat-sheets-with-scrivener . And second, she provides a “clearinghouse” link for all Beat Sheets

Theme? My Story Has a Theme?

 

Begin bookAs we all know, writing, especially fiction, is not as simple as deciding on a story and penning it. Each chapter, scene, paragraph, and sentence must work together to tell the story you want and ensure reader satisfaction. A story has many crucial elements: plot, characters, pacing, setting, point of view, etc. Then there are things like arcs, story and character, to consider. It’s hard to believe how much goes on behind the scenes of each printed page. As an author in the midst of editing, I often find… Continue reading

Writing Humor – With Lane Stone

Today we are fortunate to have author Lane Stone join us to talk a bit about the inspiration for her novels, her process and how she uses humor in her mysteries.  Lane is the author of Current Affairs:  A Tiara Investigations Mystery, Domestic Affairs and Maltipoos Are Murder.Lane photo

Thanks for being here today.  How did you come up with the ideas for your book – i.e., main character?

I had the idea of a Southern beauty queen – in her later years – solving crimes, but I also… Continue reading

Characterization – A Different Way of Thinking

I’ve taken some characterization classes and used the checklists from these to better develop my characters. I love the checklists.  The classes have been great.   They helped me better define and deepen my characters.  So I wasn’t sure what I would get out of a webinar on characterization that was something different.  Turns out it was a lot in terms of thinking slightly differently.checklist

A few highlights from the talk by author Jade Lee to think about:

  1. Using the Elements – air, water, fire, metal and earth.  Think about which

Consider This When Choosing Book Talk Topics

Book talks are part of marketing, and some authors love them while others hate them. I’m in the first group. It’s tough to come up with topics for talks, especially when you are speaking to both people who have read your book and those who have not. My two rules of thumb for speech topics are to fit my talk to my audience and also consider my purpose.

Three May Keep a Secret, my first Endurance Mystery, came out near the end of 2014. Before its launch, I did a number of book talks locally. I spoke about how… Continue reading

Contests – Love ‘Em or Won’t Touch ‘Em?

I‘ve seen lots of advice on contests. Some people won’t enter them.  Some think they’re great.  Others are in-between.  That’s where I fall too.  I think contests can be helpful but I also carefully consider what I think I get in return.   For that, I have a few guidelines.contest enter

To pay or not to pay.   Contests can be free or require a payment.  My rule of thumb is never to spend money on a contest unless I receive some sort of value back.  I’ve only entered a couple with payments… Continue reading

Time to Edit — Tips from the Web

Across one of my bookshelves, there’s a line of fat white notebooks, each one bearing a zippy, call-to-action name: “How to Write Compelling Dialogue. “Building Blocks of Great Fiction.” “How to Create a Page Turner.” ”The Secrets of Deep POV.” Many readers will recognize these titles as courses offered by some of the best in the wordsmithing business — Pat Kaye, Virginia Kantra, Steve Alcorn, and Mary Buckham, among others. When I decided to transition from jack-of-all-trades writer to mystery author, I sopped up every drop of information these folks could give me. Now, as I’m headed for… Continue reading

Guest Post with Author Linda Hall

It was my pleasure to provide a guest post on Linda Hall’s blog (lrhallbooks.blogspot.com) this summer about writing short stories. Today, she is on our blog and I thought it might be interesting to talk to her about how she developed her ideas for a summer full of guest posts by short story writers. Linda Hall Pic

How do you develop the blog themes? What made you choose short stories?

I love short stories, love reading them, love writing them. But let me back… Continue reading

Writing Conferences — Worth the Money?

Every time I’m about to hit the “Send Payment” button for a conference, the same mantra runs through my head. Should I go? Will this really help my writing? Is it worth the money?

NECRWA

NECRWA

First, let me admit that I don’t do a whole lot of conferences. I’m a regular at the Sisters in Crime (SinC) conference in November and the New England chapter of Romance Writers of America (NECRWA) conference in May. Both are in… Continue reading