Sunday, March 31, 2019

Learning Obedience



by Edie Melson @EdieMelson

He who is faithful in very little is faithful also in much... Luke 16:10

When I was young all I wanted to be was a writer. As a matter of fact, I actually wrote my first novel in eighth grade…long hand, with a purple ink pen. But through the years, my dream of writing drifted farther and farther from the realm of reasonable possibilities, until I finally I gave up.

Saturday, March 30, 2019

Find More Time to Write by Avoiding The 12 Productivity Mistakes


By Edie Melson @EdieMelson

There are a lot of tasks we must master as we make writing a priority. But with these additional tasks, our productivity may drop. 

Learning how to juggle this multi-tasking is part of becoming a professional writer. 


Friday, March 29, 2019

What NOT To Do at a Writing Conference—Tips from a Director


by Edie Melson @EdieMelson


I’ve been on both sides of the writing conference scene—for a long time. I attended conferences for 10+ years before I took a position on a leadership team. I’ve now been in leadership for almost that long. And I’ve seen a lot of things.

Some good.

And some not so good.

Today I thought I’d let you peek in the window at my unique perspective ad take a look at some of things we should never do.

Thursday, March 28, 2019

The Art of Self-Editing Part 1


by Henry McLaughlin @RiverBendSagas


Part of my call as a writer is to help others through coaching, mentoring, teaching, and editing. One thing I’ve learned in my writing and in helping other writers is the vital importance of learning to self-edit. Someone said, and I can’t remember whom, “The heart of writing is re-writing.” 

Wednesday, March 27, 2019

Capturing Your Character’s Whims as You Write


by DiAnn Mills @DiAnnMills

Exploring our character’s whims gives the writer insight into juicy morsels of personality and unusual plot points. Those impulses, sudden desires, and uncharacteristic actions make our characters real to the reader. The reader can experience the story through an original outlook on life. Perhaps the reader can identify with the emotions and behaviors enhancing the adventure.

How do we capture those special moments and build them into our story? 

Tuesday, March 26, 2019

Dipping the Quill Deeper: A Christian Writer or a Writer who is a Christian



by Eva Marie Everson @EvaMarieEverson

Lately I’ve struggled with something personal. A thought, really. One that the enemy brought up, I know, to confuse and confound me … to slide a tentacle up and around my throat ever-so-gently … almost unnoticeably … until time to squeeze.

Monday, March 25, 2019

Tips for Writing Effective Description


by Ane Mulligan @AneMulligan

Description helps our readers see the scene, we all know that. But there are varying ways to describe a scene. 

Here are a few considerations when writing description. 

Sunday, March 24, 2019

Cut and Dry


by Rhonda Rhea @RhondaRhea

I confess, I’ve done a bad thing. Logic warned me not to do it, but I did it anyway. I cut my own bangs. Every time I take the scissors into my own hands, I promise myself I’ll never do it again. That’s because I never fail to end up looking at little like Spock, minus the ears. And yet this is definitely no way to live long and prosper.

When am I going to get it? I’m just not a skilled bang-cutter. When I try, I’m operating miles outside my area of expertise. 

Saturday, March 23, 2019

Tips on Back of the Room Sales For the Speaking Author


by Cathy Fyock @CathyFyock

Back of the room sales how to’s.

You’ve just given a dynamite presentation. Your audience loves you. How do you maximize the opportunity for back of the room sales? Here are some ideas for making sure you’re getting full benefit.

Friday, March 22, 2019

Four Qualities to Look for In a Writing Critique Partner


By Lori Hatcher @LoriHatcher2

In last month’s post, 4 Reasons Why You Need a Writing Critique Partner, I shared four reasons why every serious writer should have a critique partner. Today, I’d like to share four qualities to look for in choosing one.

Four Qualities to Look for in a Writing Critique Partner

Thursday, March 21, 2019

How to Use Pre-Publication Planning To Sell More Books


by Susan U. Neal RN, MBA, MHS @SusanNealYoga

Have you ever sold one thousand books in a few months? I did. I published my tactics in the Southern Writers article, “How to Sell One Thousand Books in Three Months.” Edie Melson suggested I share some tips from this article. I will review my strategies in two blog posts: “Pre-Publication Planning to Obtain High Book Sales” and “Marketing Strategies to Improve Book Sales.” To sell this volume of books an author needs to develop a plan that covers book inception to years after release. Here’s my method:

Wednesday, March 20, 2019

Don’t Just Rehash Scripture, Scrapbook It When You Write


by Katy Kauffman @KatyKauffman28

Blah. Limp. Not enough. I scanned my paragraphs again and knew they weren’t sufficient. Where was the oomph? After all, I was talking about Scripture. My words had taken up space, but they weren’t useful or vibrant. I realized I was just rehashing what Scripture said, not adding any nuance or understanding in my book. I needed to “scrapbook” my writing. 

Tuesday, March 19, 2019

Will You Surrender Your Writing to God?


by Lucinda Secrest McDowell @LucindaSMcDowel

Sitting on the floor of the attic after discovering this little ceramic plaque, I realized anew how letting go must be one of the hardest choices ever made.

Monday, March 18, 2019

Marketing Strategy for Authors: Meme as You Write


by Karen Whiting @KarenHWhiting

The best time to create marketing tools for a book is while you write or edit your words. That’s when the ideas are fresh in your mind. As a bonus, you’ll create materials ready to post when the book releases. I tend to do memes as I’m editing each chapter or unit. For writers who just make the deadline, it might work better to create memes after sending the book to the publisher or editor. The lag time before the release is another great time to get creative and focus on marketing.

Sunday, March 17, 2019

P.R.A.Y. When Your Writing Is Stuck


by Tammy Karasek @TickledPinkTam 

When you find yourself at a loss for words to write, do you whine, slam your fist on the desk or quit and get up and walk away? I have to admit I’ve done all of these at some point (or maybe all three at one time). But I’m still writing, so what made a change for me?

Saturday, March 16, 2019

A Writer Looks at Lent


by Emme Gannon @GannonEmme

As this posts we’re ten days into Lent—a penitential time in the Church year where Christians examine their lives and set aside time to reflect more fully on those sins and bad habits that often beset us. During Lent, believers prepare their hearts for Easter through prayer, repentance, and self-denial, so that we can more fully hear the voice of God. 

Friday, March 15, 2019

Lessons I've Learned on the Writing Road

by Edie Melson @EdieMelson

Following my heart to become a writer has taught me a lot. I still remember the first time I got brave enough to call myself a writer, and the excitement the first time I sold an article.

It wasn’t all rainbows and roses though. I remember the excitement of having my first manuscript taken to committee—and the devastation when the publisher ultimately rejected it.

I wouldn’t have traded a single minute of my experience. Even that rejection was good because truthfully, neither my manuscript or me was ready for publication.

Thursday, March 14, 2019

Writers Beware - Avoid These 10 Time Thieves

by Edie Melson @EdieMelson

As writers, one of our most valuable resources is time—especially time to write. We dream about it, plan for it, even run away to find it. Yet it’s often ourselves who stand in the way of having the time we need to write.

Today I’d like to share some hidden—and some not so hidden—time thieves.

Wednesday, March 13, 2019

Pinterest Basics for Writers

by Edie Melson @EdieMelson

In the past year, Pinterest has come into its own as a valuable social media platform. Where once it was known as the place to go for ideas for things, it's now a powerhouse in the social media realm. 

But like any social media platform, it has its own culture and best practices. 

Tuesday, March 12, 2019

Tips For Learning the Craft of Writing


by Cindy Sproles @CindyDevoted

“How do you ever learn it all? There’s so much and it changes so fast.” The conferee leaned forward in his chair and scratched his chin. He had a great question. My answer was simple. “You don’t. You continue to study and learn.” 

Monday, March 11, 2019

Tools for Writers & Speakers, How Writers & Speakers Can Use a Flip Chart Effectively, Part 2


by Yvonne Ortega @YvonneOrtega1

If you haven’t read How Writers and Speakers Can Use a Flip Chart Effectively Part 1, it appeared in the Write Conversation on Monday, February 11, 2019. Here are the main points from it:
  • Find an adjustable flip chart stand with a case.
  • Adjust the height of the flip chart yourself.
  • Make sure the flip chart stand has wheels that lock.
  • Buy a flip chart with lined paper.
  • Use a flip chart that comes with adhesive sheets.

Sunday, March 10, 2019

Growing Fruit from Writing Failure


by Edie Melson @EdieMelson

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control… Galatians 5:22-23

For me, this verse is tough. Some of the things listed are easy. Some…well…not so much. 

In my travels the past few years, I’ve had the opportunity to hear about other the journey to publication from a lot of different authors. I noticed most of us have a similar story. Very few had a direct route. Instead we traveled a circuitous trip full of bumps and detours.

Saturday, March 9, 2019

It’s Important to Tell Our Readers a Story


by Beth Vogt @BethVogt


“Tell the readers a story! Because without a story, you are merely using words to prove you can string them together in logical sentences.”
Anne McCaffrey (1926-2011), first woman to win a Hugo Award for fiction

Let’s just be honest with each other, writer-friends: We complicate this whole writing process. 

Friday, March 8, 2019

Where Should a Writer Begin?

Kathleen Neely @NeelyKneely3628

So, you want to write a novel. Where do you begin? Let me answer that through the experience of mistakes. 

The Least of These was the first novel I wrote, although not the first to reach publication.I had what I deemed was a great novel idea, so I went to my computer and began penning the words that would intro my great story. My mind had events, but no overarching concept. I had characters, but I didn’t know them closely. I had a conclusion that held no character growth, no take-aways. That novel took about eighteen years to write. I abandoned it numerous times, but kept returning to my inferior manuscript. When I got serious about writing, I knew I needed help.

Thursday, March 7, 2019

The Value of Studying Personalities for Writers


by Lynn Blackburn @LynnHBlackburn


Are you a personality geek?

I kind of am.

I’m not to the point that I would claim to know and understand all the variants of all the different types out there, but I may get a little bit too excited when I read a description and have that “Oh, my word! How did they know I do that?” moment. 

Wednesday, March 6, 2019

Subtext for Writers, Part 4 - Images, Metaphors, and Genre


by Sarah Sally Hamer @SarahSallyHamer

We’ve spent the last three months exploring the various ways we create subtext for our characters, using the way they interact with other characters to explain “what lies beneath”.

Tuesday, March 5, 2019

How To Navigate a Writing Conference (Part 1)


by PeggySue Wells @PeggySueWells


A writers conference is an opportune time to talk with editors, publishers, agents, and authors. Understandably, many writers feel nervous about discussing their ideas and work-in-progress with these industry experts. But with some strategic preparation, you can have a productive face-to-face meeting.

Monday, March 4, 2019

Narrowing Your Reading Audience—Spec Fic Style!


by Ralene Burke @RaleneB

I love Christian fiction. Really, I do. But when I sit down to read, more often then not, I want to get lost in new worlds and go on grand adventures and meet new kinds of people. We don’t often see much of that in the normal Christian fiction.

And there’s nothing wrong with that.

Sunday, March 3, 2019

Writing From the Cave


by Audrey Frank @AudreyCFrank

I cry aloud to the Lord; I lift up my voice to the Lord for mercy. I pour out my complaint before him; before him I tell my trouble. (Psalm 142:1-2, A Maskil of David. When he was in the cave. A prayer.)

Some of the richest words in the world have been written from the caves of life.

Saturday, March 2, 2019

Why Would I Return to a Writers Conference?


by Tim Suddeth @TimSuddeth

Six years ago, I attended a writers’ conference for the first time. It was one of the steps that started me on this journey. This past weekend, I was lucky enough to return to the Asheville Christian Writers Conference (ACWC) that was held at the Cove outside of Asheville, North Carolina.

For the sixth time. Six times?

Friday, March 1, 2019

Tips to Keep From Being Legalistic about Social Media


by Edie Melson @EdieMelson


Social media stresses a lot of people out, but it doesn’t have to.

One of the biggest issues is that people tend to approach it with a have-to-do, legalistic mindset. Truthfully, because successful social media is all about relationship building, it works best when we treat it organically.

Because it’s easier to manage with a set of guidelines:
  • Be consistent.
  • Avoid self promotion.
It’s easy to get caught up in the to do list and forget the point.