Wednesday, July 31, 2019

Midyear Writing Goal Assessment


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

Are you meeting your 2019 goals? Now is the perfect time to assess your writing goals, determine what you’ve accomplished, and adjust your goals accordingly. If you did not write your 2019 goals, look at my previous blog, New Goals & A New Writing You

Tuesday, July 30, 2019

How to Best the Box Jumps in Your Writing - Part 2


by Kristen Hogrefe @kjhogrefe

Kristen here. I’m happy to report I haven’t bruised my shin on the box jump this week. Level 4 is still slightly out of reach, but I’ll get there. That’s what my husband James tells me, and I choose to believe him.

Last time, we saw how the “box jumps” of fear and failure can prevent us from reaching our writing goals, and today, we’re going to learn how to combat them. Yes, these obstacles present challenges, but the good news is that we can overcome them with some help and tenacity.

Monday, July 29, 2019

Box Jumps in the Writing Life - Part 1


by Kristen Hogrefe @kjhogrefe

When my husband and I joined a gym together, he introduced me to the box jump. In theory, it’s simple, a metal platform that you jump on with both feet at the same time. You can move to higher levels as you advance in ability. At least, that's how it's supposed to work.

In theory, publishing is simple too. You have a great idea. You write it down on paper. You publish it, and it becomes a New York Times’ best seller. 

Sunday, July 28, 2019

Scratching Where It Itches


by Rhonda Rhea @RhondaRhea

I confess I don’t have the greenest thumb on the block. As a matter of fact, I was thinking it might be easier to just give up on all other greenery and grow a poison ivy garden instead. Except that at this point I’d have to start from scratch. 

Scratch? Get it? Anyway, I decided it would probably be better not do anything that “rash.”

Saturday, July 27, 2019

Sell Your Book Before It's Written by Speaking


by Cathy Fyock @CathyFyock

How can you sell books before the book is written when you’re speaking?

I’m giving a presentation before my book is released. What can I do? Eric Williamson, author of How to Work with Jerks, called Cathy to ask her this question. Here are some ideas.

Friday, July 26, 2019

5 Characters You Don't Want in Your Writing Story


by Lori Hatcher @LoriHatcher2

Authors go to great lengths to develop engaging, relatable, and winsome characters. Many experts say strong characterization is the key to a successful novel. If we can craft a charming lead, pull together a strong supporting cast, and weave a dynamic plot, we have a chance at a best seller.

Thursday, July 25, 2019

The Art of Self-editing, Part 5


by Henry McLaughlin @RiverBendSagas

The Final Frontier—The Professional Edit
Over the past few weeks, we’ve done a lot of work revising and rewriting our manuscript. We’re ready to submit to our dream agent, or the agent who requested a full manuscript at the conference we attended last month. Our finger hovers over the send button. 

Wednesday, July 24, 2019

Taming the Beast Called Time Management for Writers


by DiAnn Mills @DiAnnMills

Busy writers realize they must master the feat of time management or they will fall into a hole called overwhelmed and unproductive. Editors and those depending on us will be disappointed, possibly ending a working relationship. With a few guidelines, we can learn how to take charge of our responsibilities and breathe while giving us time to spare. (Smile too)

Tuesday, July 23, 2019

Dipping the Quill Deeper: Carrying Out the Obligation


by Eva Marie Everson @EvaMarieEverson

While I was beseeching our Lord to-day that he would speak through me, since I could find nothing to say and had no idea how to begin to carry out the obligation laid upon me by obedience. ~St. Teresa of Avila

She was a noblewoman who lived in the 16thcentury. She chose the reclusive life of a Carmelite nun over a life of privilege and ease. She was a mystic. An author. A religious reformer. A theologian. A woman after God’s own heart. A rare beauty. And she penned lines such as those above that can take my breath away.

Monday, July 22, 2019

5 Tips for Writing Jugglers


by Any Mulligan @AneMulligan

I can’t juggle. Oranges, lemons, it doesn’t matter. They all fall to the floor. I tried grapes, erroneously thinking since they are smaller, I could catch them easier. Wrong. Believe me, I’ve practiced, until the dog started chasing after the grapes. Those are bad for dogs, so I gave up my bid for a career in the circus to focus on something I can juggle.

Writing projects.

Sunday, July 21, 2019

Give It Your Best When You Write


by Tammy Karasek @TickledPinkTam

It was the allotted time to sit down and write. You have perched yourself in front of the computer screen or notebook with a pen and written your fingers numb. As you wrote the piece, whether it’s a blog post, article, devo or part of your book, did you given it your best effort?

Saturday, July 20, 2019

Letting Go of Negative Thoughts for Better Writing


by Emme Gannon @GannonEmme


How often do we sit at our computer, ready to write, but are blocked by faraway thoughts—mindless wanderings that pull us off subject into an unfamiliar abyss. This often occurs when our world is jolted by change. Life is good. Comfortable. Then God moves us to a new place. Unfamiliar. An unknown world bereft of our knowledge and control. Life tilts away from the familiar and we become emotionally off balance. We can’t concentrate. Our mind becomes mush. We doubt our calling.

Friday, July 19, 2019

Build a Solid Writing Foundation with These 10 Tips


by Edie Melson @EdieMelson

Despite news to the contrary, I believe this is the best time ever to be a writer. Writing for a living isn’t a get rich quick scheme, but it is possible to make a reasonable income. Becoming a professional writer takes hard work. But if we’re willing to learn the industry and the craft of writing, we can find success. Today I’m going to share my tips that will help you find that success.

Thursday, July 18, 2019

A Balanced Life for Writers


by Edie Melson @EdieMelson


Trust in the Lord forever, For in God the Lord, we have an everlasting Rock (Isaiah 26:4 NASB). 

Everywhere we turn we’re being urged to find balance. In advertising we’re given soothing images of candles, yoga, exercise, places to get away, etc. etc. etc. In my life, I try to balance writing, marketing, family, friends, church . . . all good activities, but too much is still too much. No amount of scented candles or stretching can help a writer who is struggling to find time to write. 

Wednesday, July 17, 2019

Battling a Spiritual Enemy When We Write


by Katy Kauffman @KatyKauffman28


He doesn’t like it when we sit down to write. Our spiritual enemy’s mission to hurt God’s children and keep hearts blinded to the truth, is thwarted when we write for God. We may grow weary with writing and rewriting, but what we’re really doing is preparing for battle. 

Tuesday, July 16, 2019

The Importance of Thinking Before You Write


by Lucinda Secrest McDowell @LucindaSMcDowel

“Think before you speak!” is good advice.

What about “Think before you write?” Not a bad idea either. And I would add to that, “Pray before you write.”

I’ve seen far too much writing launched out into the world these days with nary a thought or prayer as to whether or not the words are true, helpful and gracious.  

Paul exhorted the people of Ephesus to “ lovingly follow the truth at all times—speaking truly, dealing truly, living truly—and so become more and more in every way like Christ who is the Head of his body, the Church.” (Ephesians 4:15-16 TLB)

Monday, July 15, 2019

For Writers: Organizing Business Cards for Marketing


by Karen Whiting @KarenHWhiting


A few months ago, Edie Melson mentioned some great apps including Camcard for organizing business cards. I’ve been using that for a while, and it is very helpful as a marketing tool.

Sunday, July 14, 2019

God Loves the Scenic Route


Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not rely on your own understanding; think about Him in all your ways, and He will guide you on the right paths. Proverbs 3:5-6

I grew up during the 60s and 70s, in a family that loved to travel. Some of my earliest memories are of traveling across the united states, looking at life from the rear view window of a VW bug. When my sister was born, our family went from three to four and our parents traded in the VW Bug for a VW Bus. (And yes, the picture above is family. We're in Big Bend National Park in 1969.)

Oh the places we visited.

I’ve been out west in a blizzard so fierce we had to scrape ice from the inside of the windows. I’ve cooked an egg on the pavement in Death Valley, and spent several nights camping on top of what used to be Mount St. Helens. But only a small percentage of our time on the road was spent on major highways.

Saturday, July 13, 2019

Choosing to Relax Helps You Achieve Success as a Writer


by Beth Vogt @BethVogt

As I mulled over options for this column, American Ninja Warrior (ANW)was on the television in the background. I don’t aspire to conquer those crazy obstacle courses; I’m an armchair American Ninja Warrior. And while I cheer the competitors on during their runs, I love hearing their how-I-got-here stories even more. 

Thursday, July 11, 2019

5 W’s and an H of Newspaper Writing

by Julie Lavender @JLavenderWrites

What’s black and white and read all over? I know, I know—it’s an old joke, and it’s really only funny when asked verbally, because the homonym “read” gives away the answer. A newspaper is black and white and read all over!! (You can recognize the joke as outdated, also, because most newspapers sport color photographs these days!) 

Wednesday, July 10, 2019

Publishing As a Second Language—5 Thoughts on Selling All Rights


by Linda Gilden @LindaGilden


“Can you help me? My story was published in one of my favorite magazines. I was so excited to get the contract I guess I didn’t read the fine print. I want to use my story again and realize I sold all rights to this publisher. What can I do to get my story back?”

There are a lot of elements to address in this question. Let’s take them one by one and see what we can figure out.

Tuesday, July 9, 2019

Taking Pride in Your Writing Work


by Cindy K Sproles @CindyDevoted

I take pride in my work. It was how I was raised. Do your best because your best represents your effort and how much you care.

Some years back, my ministry partner and I decided we wanted to pay authors for their devotions on the ministry website. It wasn’t much. $10.00. But for a struggling ministry, financially, that was huge when you multiplied it times 30 days, times 12 months. Still, we stepped out on faith praying God would provide so we could offer the writers a token of our appreciation.

Monday, July 8, 2019

Spiritual Preparation for Speaking


by Yvonne Ortega @YvonneOrtega1

In your plans for a speaking engagement, you probably think about the topic, visuals, handouts, and what you’ll wear. What about your spiritual preparation? 

Sunday, July 7, 2019

Delicious Words


by Audrey Frank @AudreyCFrank

I have not departed from the commands of his lips; I have treasured the words of his mouth more than my daily bread. Job 23:12, NIV

No one can make a morsel of food look more delectable, more delightful, more delicious, than a hungry child.

Saturday, July 6, 2019

For Writers: 5 Tips to Grow Your Vocabulary


by Tim Suddeth @TimSuddeth

Have you ever been writing along and then, suddenly, was stuck looking at the blinking curser (I know it’s cursor, but the other way seems more appropriate)? Either you don’t like the word you’re using or that perfect word on the tip of your brain just won’t materialize.

Friday, July 5, 2019

Writing: The Journey


by Martin Wiles @LinesFromGod

My rights have been returned! 

Wait a minute. The rights for two books I signed over to the publishing company. The rights they accepted. Now, they were returning them. What exactly did that mean? That my two books would no longer be available? The separate year-long journeys I had made of edits and re-edits. The waiting game I had played—on design, on production—to finally hold a copy of my very own book and know I had written what lay inside the covers. All over. 

Thursday, July 4, 2019

God Sees All the Seasons of a Writer


by Lynn Blackburn @LynnHBlackburn 

It’s officially Hurricane Season. I don't know about you, but I am fascinated by storms. I will watch The Weather Channel all day for continuing coverage of whatever massive event is happening.

Wednesday, July 3, 2019

For Writers: Still Digging Deep, Solving the Mystery of Deep Point of View—Part Two


by Sarah Sally Hamer @SarahSallyHamer


Last month, we talked about how deep POV isn’t really a mystery, it’s one of many techniques to create your characters all the way “to the bone,” where their emotions live. It’s a way to drag your audience along on that journey. And, it’s a way to allow your characters to tell their stories. 

We worked with dialogue and body language last month. Today, we’ll add two more layers to the characters we’ve already started creating: 1) Character Goal, 2) and Character Motivation.

Monday, July 1, 2019

Summer Fun, Writing Fodder


by Ralene Burke @RaleneB


Ah, summer is finally here. The sun is shining, the trees are green…and it's hot, too hot. Okay, I'm not the biggest fan of summer, but traditionally there are a few perks to the season. Summer is a time for swimming, vacations, and lots of reading, right? It's also a time to start building our writing fodder!

Writing fodder is our breadth of experience and knowledge from which we draw upon when we write, no matter what genre that is. Everything from unique events to specific conversations to the books and media we consume contribute to the writing fodder.