Sunday, June 30, 2019

Recognizing The Abundance of God's Provision


by Edie Melson @EdieMelson

When the dew fell on the camp at night, the manna would fall with it. Numbers 11:9

In recent years, I've made gratitude journaling a daily part of my life. I've discovered that I'm not a very thankful person and it helps me recognize the abundance of  blessings that populate my life. 

That got me thinking about Manna.

Saturday, June 29, 2019

The Writing Journey: Should Writing Be Your Permanent Residence?

Edie here. Today I'm excited to introduce you to a long-time writer friend of mine, Jennifer Hallmark. We've supported each other through this writing journey and now Her debut novel is now out and it's one you're not going to want to miss. Be sure to give her a warm TWC welcome!



The Writing Journey: Should Writing Be Your Permanent Residence?
by Jennifer Hallmark @JenHwrites 

Writing is a journey, one that starts, much like that yellow brick road in The Wizard of Oz, in a sweet little town far from fields of sleep-inducing poppies and scary forests. Unlike the broom and professor ending, however, penning words is an excursion that can last a lifetime.

Friday, June 28, 2019

Be True to Your Writing Self. Say No. And Sometimes Yes.


By Lori Hatcher @lorihatcher2

The offer I received was a writing dream come true. A major publishing house had read my book on homeschooling and invited me to submit more material. “We’re considering expanding our audience to include homeschooling moms. Would you like to audition for the opportunity to write regularly for us?”

Thursday, June 27, 2019

The Art of Self-Editing, Part 4


by Henry McLaughlin @RiverBendSagas


We covered a lot of territory over the last few months. The previous blogs in this series are below, at the end of the post.

Now, we’re coming toward the end of preparing our manuscript for submission or self-publishing.

Wednesday, June 26, 2019

What to do When a Writing Critique Hurts


by DiAnn Mills @DiAnnMills


We writers are a passionate, emotional group. While these traits help us create beautifully worded fiction and non-fiction, nothing slashes the heart deeper than a harsh critique of our work.

Tuesday, June 25, 2019

9 Tips for Supporting Your Writing Spouse


by Edie Melson @EdieMelson

Today I wanted to share 9 ways to support your writing spouse. Writing is a tough industry, and the support of a spouse can be the difference between success and failure.

This isn’t really a post from what I wish had happened, but ways that Kirk has supported me—all without my prompting. 

Truthfully, I would not be where I am today without his constant encouragement, prayers, and support.

Monday, June 24, 2019

Writing Better Books by Interviewing Your Characters


by Ane Mulligan @AneMulligan

When interviewing our characters, we have to remove our novelist’s hat and don a journalist’s. You’re after a story, and it’s not time to be nice. 

A true journalist isn’t particularly concerned with the target’s feel8lings. In fact, a great journalist—a Pulitzer prize-winning journalist—goes for the jugular. He’ll poke, probe and pick scabs to get his story. He won’t leave his victim alone until they blurt out their secrets, their hidden desires, their deepest hurt. 

Sunday, June 23, 2019

No Other Name


by Rhonda Rhea @RhondaRhea

I said I’d never do it. But I did it. And actually, I’ve been somewhere near the worst of them all. I said I’d never be one of those moms who went through the whole list of her kids’ names before hitting on the right one. But at least once a week the entire time my kids were growing up, I would want to say something to one of them and…there it was: roll call. I’d hit every name on my five-kid list, and sometimes even throw in a couple of my own siblings and a stray cousin or two. 

Saturday, June 22, 2019

Earn Your Respect as a Writer


by Edie Melson @EdieMelson

"Nobody takes me seriously or respects my time."

This seems to be a common refrain I hear from newer writers. They’ve finally worked up the courage to get serious about writing regularly and some of their closest family and friends won’t respect their time. They get calls during the times they’re writing and attitude if they don’t stop to talk. They hear comments that undermine their newfound confidence.

Friday, June 21, 2019

Focus Your Writer’s Eye with These 7 Tips


by Edie Melson @EdieMelson

By and large writers are an observant lot. Things others might brush over or miss entirely stay with us, sparking ideas that blossom and grow. An overheard conversation can lead us to the plot of entire book. 

But like any skill that comes naturally, there's still room for improvement. 

Thursday, June 20, 2019

Prevent Post-Writing-Conference Burnout


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

I enjoyed attending the 2019 Blue Ridge Mountain Christian Writers Conference. During the conference many industry relationships were cultivated as discussed in my last article Writing—A Juggling Act I saw friends I hadn’t seen since last year and met new ones. Now I have several new podcasts and magazines to query, dozens of social media pages to like, and book proposals to complete. By the time I got home exhaustion ensued. 

Wednesday, June 19, 2019

Writing with Purpose


by Katy Kauffman @KatyKauffman28

Writing a book is no sprint—it’s a marathon. A cross-country marathon. As you run through fields of modifiers and metaphors, you eventually encounter hills of writer’s block. Ducking distractions and swatting flies of doubt and anxiety, you barrel forward closer and closer to the finish line. 

Tuesday, June 18, 2019

Writing Memoir - 3 Keys to Keep You On Track


by Lucinda Secrest McDowell @LucindaSMcDowel

“So what?”

Unfortunately, that may be just the response when you say you want to write a memoir. Why do you do it anyway?

To communicate a true story. Your story. Or at least part of it.

Monday, June 17, 2019

Marketing to Your Reader


by Karen Whiting @KarenHWhiting

Marketing to the reader should begin before typing the first word of your book or article. To reach that reader you need to understand the person’s real desires and needs. Your words will be a gift to that reader. Consider what your reader really wants and write to meet those desires. What’s the question you can answer that is on their mind or heart? What’s the challenge in their life that I causing struggles? What emotion do the struggles cause? Those are the felt needs. Keep them uppermost in your writing and then showcase them in the marketing.

Sunday, June 16, 2019

Writing and Cooking


by Tammy Karasek @TickledPickTam


All the beautiful produce is hitting the grocery stores as well as farmers’ markets throughout the area. The colors and smells are mesmerizing. The choices abound. As a classically trained cook, the joy I get walking through the bounty is probably like the joy my hubby gets as he walks through a chocolate shop! Both of us take our time, imagining the taste and thinking through just what we will buy. And buy, we will. Share we must. 

Saturday, June 15, 2019

Living the Writing Dream—Even When You Don’t Know What It Is Anymore


by Emme Gannon @GannonEmme

I’ve learned to never lock myself into an idea. Complacency sets in which can show up like arthritis on a rainy day. 

My southern grandmother could predict when her joints would act up by observing nature. “The cows are layin’ down. It’s gonna’ rain today,” she’d say. Sure enough, those cows were spot on. 

Friday, June 14, 2019

23 Things to Do for Your Writing Self


by Edie Melson @EdieMelson

There are a lot of things about being a writer that are hard. And there are a lot of ways we make it even harder on ourselves. So today, I’d like to remind you—and me—of ways to be a little bit kinder on ourselves.

Thursday, June 13, 2019

6 Steps to Break Into Newspaper Writing


By Julie Lavender @JLavenderWrites

And the winners are ….. 

I told you last month in my very first blog post for The Write Conversation that writing for newspapers as a faith-based, freelance stringer is a win-win strategy. An unpublished or newly-published author wins valuable credits for the resume when a newspaper article sporting his or her byline appears in print. And the readership of the community earns the prize of positive and inspirational, local content above and below the fold. 

Wednesday, June 12, 2019

Publishing as a Second Language—Acquisition Editor, Managing Editor, or Editor-in-Chief?


by Linda Gilden @LindaGilden

When we enter the publishing world, lots of terms come to the surface. One of the things that can be a little confusing is:
  • When I go to submit a manuscript, to whom do I send it? 
  • Do I send it to the Senior Editor, the Managing Editor, the Editorial Assistant, or one of the other folks that I see listed as part of the staff?

Often when studying the masthead of the magazine (where you see the listing of editors) it seems overwhelming. There are so many names. But as long as you know who to look for, your submission will find its way to the correct person. If you don’t see an Acquisitions Editor listed and the staff is small, an editorial assistant may be your best choice.

Tuesday, June 11, 2019

For Writers: Staying True to You


by Cindy K. Sproles @CindyDevoted


Writing is subjective and this sometimes makes it difficult to know who or what to believe about our writing. For this reason, I think this is the first lesson all new writers need to learn.

Monday, June 10, 2019

I Might Have Commitment Issues as a Writer If...


by Edie Melson @EdieMelson

Choosing to be a writer can be a daunting prospect. It involves courage, creativity, and yes, commitment. When we’re unwilling to make that commitment, we can destine ourselves to failure before we’ve had a chance to succeed.

This post isn’t meant to beat anyone up, but rather to make us aware of some of the things holding us back on our writing journey.

Sunday, June 9, 2019

When Failure Brings Blessings


That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delightin weaknesses, in insults, in hardships,in persecutions,in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong (2 Corinthians 12:10 NIV).

For me, failure reinforces and validates the fears I battle as a writer. Every mistake I make seems to add weight to the voices I hear in my head that feed my insecurity. And I make a lot of mistakes. Because this vicious cycle can bring my writing to a screeching halt, I’ve had to find a way to combat this way of looking at life. 

Saturday, June 8, 2019

Learning to be Content with the Writing Life We Have Right Now


by Beth Vogt @BethVogt

The writing life is one of constant evaluation. We all set goals for ourselves, most of them familiar:
  • Finish a manuscript. 
  • Attend a writers conference.
  • Pitch a book idea to editors and agents.
  • Land a contract.
  • Win an award.
After we’ve set our goals, we do the work needed to achieve them. And that’s when we constantly ask ourselves the question, “How am I doing?” Sometimes we’re successful. Sometimes our dreams even happen faster than we imagined. Other times? We do the work … and we wait. And then there are the times when our success shifts, seemingly disappears, like when our publishing house closes or an anticipated follow-up contract doesn’t materialize. 

Friday, June 7, 2019

A Checklist for Your Blog AFTER You Hit Publish


by Edie Melson @EdieMelson

Last week I shared A Checklist for Your Blog Before You Hit Publish But publishing a post doesn’t mean our work is done. 

There are even more things you can do then that make a big difference in how many people it reaches. This week I’m sharing how to continue that momentum with 9 things to do after you hit publish.

Thursday, June 6, 2019

A Grammar Book for Writers and Everyone Else!


by Lynn H. Blackburn @LynnHBlackburn

Not everyone who writes is a grammar nerd.

While I fully embrace the term “nerd” when applied to me, I don’t consider myself to be a grammar nerd. My grasp of the English language comes more from the thousands of hours I’ve spent reading, and my ability to form a coherent sentence has more to do with an innate sense of what sounds right than from being able to explain what is grammatically correct.

In fact, until I’d been on the receiving end of an intense copy edit, I thought I knew what I was doing. 

Wednesday, June 5, 2019

For Writers: Solving the Mystery of Deep Point of View—Part One


by Sarah Sally Hamer @SarahSallyHamer


Get out your magnifying glass! We’re going to dig deep into deep POV and see if we can figure it out!

Deep POV really isn’t a mystery, it’s a technique used extensively in modern-day writing. It’s a to-the-bone character development which is expressed in your writing. In so many words, it’s FEELINGS. What does your character feel? And how do you express that on the page?

Tuesday, June 4, 2019

Monday, June 3, 2019

For Writers: World-Building is in the Details


by Ralene Burke @RaleneB

If you ask any speculative fiction writer what the differences are between "normal" writers and spec writers, we can give you a whole list of fun things. (Don't get me wrong, we have much respect for all writers—it's a tough job no matter your genre.) But one of the biggest, most fun, and perhaps hardest difference in being a spec writer is world building. 

Sunday, June 2, 2019

Telling God’s Stories


by Audrey Frank @AudreyCFrank


The Lord sent Nathan to David. “This is what the Lord says…” (2 Samuel 12:1, 7).

Nathan had learned early not to trust his own words, but to instead listen to the Lord and deliver the words He gave in their entirety (see 2 Samuel 7:1-17). 

In 2 Samuel 12, we have the privilege of peering into his obedience as the trusted prophet of the king follows the Lord’s command, approaching David with words that would change the course of history. God-words, the kind that are sharper than any double-edged sword, penetrating even to dividing soul and spirit, judging the thoughts and attitudes of the heart (Hebrews 4:12). Nathan was a storyteller, and the story he told came from the piercing mind of God. He offered it to King David and trusted the results to God.

Saturday, June 1, 2019

Getting The Message Out About Our Writing

by Tim Suddeth @TimSuddeth

Whether it’s getting back from our conference or from a vacation, many of us have returned to our cozy hidey-holes in front of the computer/laptop/typewriter. If the conversations at Blue Ridge are any indicators, we tend to lean toward being introverts and are most comfortable with our characters, all apologies to our families and friends.