Friday, December 13, 2019

Writing with the Fire of a Yule Log

by Joshua J. Masters @JoshuaJMasters

“Am I writing with the fire of a yule log?” That’s a question every Christian author should ask themselves during the Christmas season and continue asking throughout the year.

No season affects the heart of man like Christmas. If only for a short time, the holiday allows people to see the world through a different lens, and isn’t that what we’d like our writing to do?

Thursday, December 12, 2019

Share Good News with the Gift of Writing

by Julie Lavender @JLavenderWrites

I didn’t bring a gift to the birthday celebration. In fact, the gentleman celebrating his special day was the one who distributed gifts. Ninety gifts to be exact. 

Joseph Montgomery, from a small town in south-Georgia, celebrated his 90th birthday in a rather unusual way: he gave away ninety one-dollar bills to perfect strangers. 

Wednesday, December 11, 2019

Make Your Writing Research Take You Further With These 7 Tips

by Linda Gilden @LindaGilden

Has it ever occurred to you to use your article research to write different types of articles once your original article is published? For most researched articles, there is always a file of information you have to cut in order to stay within your word count. Save it and turn it into assorted types of articles.

There are several basic article types popular with magazines and that lend themselves well to repurposing the material. Here is a quick look at the types of articles you can use.

1. Personal Experience article—This is your story. Not all of it in one place (that would be a book!) but a snippet of one experience that you can share with readers that will make an impact on their lives.

2. Profile article—Similar to the personal experience but it isn’t your experience. You are writing about the experience of someone else. For this you must interview your subject and learn all you can about him or her.

3. Round Up article—This one is really just what it sounds like. You “round up” information on one subject from several sources and cohesively present it to your readers.

4. Calendar article—This article would be related to a season or calendar event.

5. How To article—Article that teaches the reader something new.

6. Issue article—Often “piggybacks” on something in the news. Article must be balanced.

7. Devotional/Inspirational—Makes a single God-centered point that directs readers to God and/or inspires the reader to become a better person.

For example, if you have done a profile article from a celebrity interview, why not ask a few extra questions during your time together that will help create another article. If you have spent most of your time talking about his or her career, ask about a special Christmas memory. Record the details to save for a seasonal article that centers on special holiday memories of celebrities. If your celebrity has a particular hobby or skill, use what you learn as a springboard for a how-to article. Or if he or she is a political figure and has been in the news discussing a specific issue, do a little more research for a balanced issue article. This one interview could be the springboard for multiple articles.

Each article type has specific guidelines but all are easy to master. If you've never done so, try to stretch your research today by writing more than one article from your information. If you have, share with us in the comments below how you stretch your research.

Make Your Writing Research Take You Further With These 7 Tips - @LindaGilden on @EdieMelson (Click to Tweet)

Linda Gilden is an award-winning writer, speaker, editor, certified writing and speaking coach, and personality consultant. Linda is the author of 19 books and over 1000 magazine articles. She enjoys every meeting with editors and knowing we are all part of the same team. Linda’s favorite activity (other than eating folded potato chips) is floating in a pool with a good book surrounded by splashing grandchildren—a great source of writing material!

Tuesday, December 10, 2019

Being the Storyteller We Love

by Cindy Sproles @CindyDevoted

Grandma was a wonderful storyteller. Twenty-seven years after her death, I doubt even one cousin would fail to recognize her tales after just one or two phrases. We loved sitting around her in the living room listening to her yarns and trying to decipher truth from fiction.

Monday, December 9, 2019

How to Craft the First Point of Your Presentation: Part 2

by Yvonne Ortega @YvonneOrtega1

In Part 2, you will go through the ways to use the foundational phrase in the first point of your presentation. We covered the niche and the foundational phrase in Part 1 of How to Craft the First Point of Your Presentation

The First Way to Use the Foundational Phrase: Anecdote or Story

One of the most popular ways to craft your first point is the use of an anecdote or story.

Sunday, December 8, 2019

Expectations as a Writer's Stumbling Block

by Edie Melson @EdieMelson

My soul, wait in silence for God only, For my hope is from Him (Psalm 62:5)

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, December 7, 2019

Is a Bible Reading Plan for You in 2020?

by Tim Suddeth @TimSuddeth

In my senior year at seminary, I had an epiphany. I was getting my Masters in Theology so that I could teach the Bible, yet I had never read it thru from cover to cover. I had grown up in church and gone to countless Bible studies so I knew most, if not all of the Bible. However, I’d never systematically read it in its entirety.

Friday, December 6, 2019

Grow Your Blog by Avoiding These 9 Mistakes

by Edie Melson @EdieMelson

Blogging is a great way to connect with our online audience. And while  there are a lot more people out there doing it well, I still see some common mistakes. These things affect a blog, making readers click away before they finish a post and even unsubscribe altogether. 

Today I’m going to share the top blogging mistakes I see from authors.

Thursday, December 5, 2019

Choose Wisely

by Lynn H. Blackburn @LynnHBlackburn

I didn’t win NaNo. I could have won, but I didn’t, and I’m not sorry.

In case you have no idea what I’m talking about, NaNo is short for NaNoWriMo, which is short for National Novel Writing Month. The goal of NaNo is to write 50K in one month. I have no idea what a typical writing month looks like for writers who write full time, but for this writer, 50K is a lot. By a lot, we’re talking double what I would normally consider a very good month.

I got close. I could have done it.

But I chose not to, and I think the choosing is why I don’t feel bad about it. 

Wednesday, December 4, 2019

Start Writing Your Book in the Right Place

by Sarah Sally Hamer @SarahSallyHamer

What a silly question! It starts at the beginning, right? Or does it? Where exactly IS that beginning?

Believe it or not, most people (especially newbies), start in the wrong place. Do you?

Tuesday, December 3, 2019

Don’t Throw Away Your Writing

by PeggySue Wells @PeggySueWells

Peabody Award winner, Paul McCusker is a screenwriter (Beyond the Mask), scriptwriter, director of multiple award-winning audio dramatizations, Dove-nominated song writer, and author. If you’ve listened to Focus on the Family’s Adventures in Odyssey, now in its 30th year, you are familiar with a quarter of a century of Paul McCusker’s excellent and prolific writing. 

Monday, December 2, 2019

Writing Holidays in Speculative Fiction

by Ralene Burke @RaleneB

We’re right smack dab in the middle of holiday season! Halloween and Thanksgiving are behind us, and Christmas and New Year’s are both less than a month away. Welcome to my favorite time of the year!

Many writers of fiction that takes place in our world don’t have to worry too much about holidays. They only need to be aware of what they are and where they fall in their story timeline. If a writer is writing a historical novel set in winter in 19th century England, but they don’t have the character’s celebrating Christmas in some way? Well, that’s a little weird. 

Sunday, December 1, 2019

I Must Not Allow My Life to Become a Discordant Distraction

by Edie Melson @EdieMelson

I love listening to praise music. It can send my soul soaring as I reconnect with the healing truth that comes only from God. It also anchors that truth in my brain in a way that few other mediums can do. When I hear truth sung, I recall it quicker when a situation arises, even when I don’t feel like singing.