Friday, February 28, 2020

Six Things to Do When You Can’t Attend a Writing Conference

by Lori Hatcher @LoriHatcher2

Are you planning to attend a writers conference this year? Maybe not. Perhaps health issues, family dynamics, financial challenges, or a demanding work schedule have left you on the sidelines sighing over Facebook posts and conference invites. 

If you can’t attend a conference, you can still move forward in your writing life. Here are six suggestions:

Thursday, February 27, 2020

Who Are You Depending on as You Write?

by Henry McLaughlin @RiverBendSagas

Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. Seek his will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take. Proverbs 3:5-6 (NLT)

Over the last couple of years, I spent a large amount of time working on a novel. The concept was unique. At least, I’d never discovered any other book with a similar plot. The characters were fascinating. I even developed an exciting plot twist for the end that I had never envisioned during the writing.

Wednesday, February 26, 2020

7 Traits of Intentional Writers

by DiAnn Mills @DiAnnMills

Intentional writers refuse to consider if or when they will succeed. These writers know where they are going in the publishing world because they understand the value of persistence and hard work. 

So how can we writers be termed as intentional? Is it an innate trait or one we must learn? Is the process difficult?

Monday, February 24, 2020

A Writer's Toolbelt

by Ane Mulligan @AneMulligan

My husband is an artist and our Community Theatre's set designer. When he plans a new set, he lays out his favorite tools before he begins the work. Pens, pencils, rulers, angle finders, compasses, geometric shape templates, etc. all laid out within arm's reach. It's quite an array. If it's a painting he's working on, he has at least a dozen tubes of oil paint next to his easel and dabs of at least a half-dozen others already on his palette. 

I have a similar routine when I begin a new book. I first open a new project in Scrivener, my preferred writing software. I populate it with a character interview for each point-of-view character. 

Sunday, February 23, 2020

Qualities vs. Symptoms

by Rhonda Rhea @RhondaRhea

Not to toot my own horn or anything, but I think I have some very unique and useful character qualities. Granted, most better psychoanalysts might not refer to them as “character qualities” as much as they refer to them as “symptoms,” but still.  

I think writers acquire an exclusive symptom or two…make that a “quality” or two…that others don’t necessarily encounter. Maybe it’s the inordinate amount of rejection we’re called to deal with, but insecurity is so often the order of the day. Not to mention that when fiction writers hear new little voices in their heads, they never medicate. No, they actually encourage the little voices. And then publish them. 

Saturday, February 22, 2020

Getting More Book Reviews on Amazon

by Cathy Fyock @CathyFyock

On one of our recent Author Mastermind calls with newly published authors, we brainstormed about how to get more reviews on Amazon. Here’s the start to our list.

Write a really, really good book! People are more willing to review your book if they love your book.

Friday, February 21, 2020

Protecting Digital Accounts After Death

by Barbara Latta @BarbaraLatta

Anyone who has a Facebook profile more than likely has at some time had a person clone you and send out friend requests to people you are already friends with. Most people are wise to this now because it happens so frequently, but some unsuspecting Facebook members still click to add the friend and then the fake user starts sending out pleas for help as if they are stranded in another country and they need you, their dear friend, to send money. 

Thursday, February 20, 2020

Top 12 Ergonomic Writing Tips

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

Do you have a physical condition that is aggravated by writing? I do. I suffer from a right wrist injury from gardening that flares up when I do a lot of cutting and pasting on my computer. Writers perform repetitive movements that can injure muscles, ligaments, tendons, and nerves. A common injury is carpal tunnel syndrome, but repetitive motions can also cause back and neck injuries. However, we can use strategies to prevent injuries and help heal them.

Wednesday, February 19, 2020

Make a Difference with Writing—Keep Your Light Shining

by Katy Kauffman @KatyKauffman28

The light in the sanctuary grew steadily in the silence. Adults and children alike handled their stewardship with care—to keep the light shining. A sacred tradition, candlelight passed from person to person in the Christmas Eve service that I watched online. Once every candle was lit, the pastor, Dr. David Jeremiah, stood at the front and led everyone in a simple but poignant song for the moment—“This Little Light of Mine.” 

Tuesday, February 18, 2020

So You Want to Write a Book

by Lucinda Secrest McDowell @LucindaSMcDowel

I love to write. I love to speak. I love people who come up and chat with me at events.

And yes, I even love people who say to me, “I want to write a book too!”

But I’m often stymied by how to answer their inevitable questions about how I can help them get published. I have some standard answers, including urging them to attend a writers’ conference and meet industry professionals, other writers, and go to practical workshops. 

Monday, February 17, 2020

Tips for Marketing Children’s Books

by Karen Whiting @KarenHWhiting

Parents, grandparents, and teachers are the biggest buyers of children’s books although the child is the actual audience. That means marketing simultaneously to both adults and children. The adults want great reasons to buy the book that promote education and inspire children to become lifelong readers. For children, it’s all about being entertained and excited.

Sunday, February 16, 2020

We Should Be Writing

by Tammy Karasek @TickledPinkTam

Have you ever found yourself with looming writing deadlines and nary a paragraph completed on a page? Whether those deadlines are self-imposed or set by someone else, they seem to nag and agitate you until you get that piece done. Or worse, you panic and freeze.

Friday, February 14, 2020

Two Words Christian Writers Should Stop Using

by Joshua J. Masters @JoshuaJMasters

As Christian writers, we know the importance of selecting just the right words. But many of us over use two words that stunt our growth as writers and followers of Christ—two words we should remove from our vocabulary. Those words are have to.

Thursday, February 13, 2020

Writers on Repeat: Don’t give up!

by Julie Lavender @JLavenderWrites

Bill Murray’s classic romantic comedy, Groundhog Day, played in the background (as an alternative to the Super Bowl) on one of those movie channels when I sat down to ponder my February post for The Write Conversation. With conference season on my mind, I couldn’t help but compare the lessons learned by meteorologist Phil Connors with some of my takeaways of conferencing. 

Wednesday, February 12, 2020

Carolina Christian Writers Conference

by Linda Gilden @LindaGilden

I hope by now you have taken time to set some new goals for your writing for 2020 and figured out what you’d like to accomplish. When we assess our writing goals, we need to take a look at markets, article and book deadlines, and creative ways to sell our work. 

Tuesday, February 11, 2020

5 Tips for Social Media from an Author Who Just Wants it to Work

by Cindy K. Sproles @CindyDevoted

I’m no good at social media. I’m just an author who wants it to work. I’ve laughed with my dear friend, and social media guru, Edie Melson, that she dragged me into social media kicking and screaming. We know, as authors, social media is vitally important.

Sunday, February 9, 2020

Learning to Thrive in the Midst of Chaos

by Edie Melson @EdieMelson

I love how relevant and real the Bible is. God’s word doesn’t sugar coat life. He uses authentic—flawed—people to illustrate His truth, His forgiveness, and His grace. I can find myself in almost everyone I read about. Occasional I get it right and find myself imitating Mary. Although all too often I’m more of a Martha clone. I’m as impulsive as Peter, as much of a doubter as Thomas, and as unwilling to leave circumstances in God’s capable hands as Sarah.

Saturday, February 8, 2020

Do We Have to Choose Between Our Real Life and Our Writing Life?

by Beth K. Vogt @BethVogt

My husband Rob proofreads all my blog posts. 

My husband is a family physician, not a writer. But through the years, he’s gotten quite good at being another pair of eyes for me. He catches typos, missing words, misspellings, and also lets me know if a sentence or paragraph doesn’t make sense. 

Friday, February 7, 2020

Are There Places I Should Auto-Feed My Blog Posts?

by Edie Melson @EdieMelson

Actually there are. 

And after teaching at a conference recently I discovered that a lot of bloggers are unaware of this audience-building option. So today I’m going to share some places where auto-sharing your blog posts are a good idea and some that are a less than helpful place to share. 

Thursday, February 6, 2020

Adorning the Dark—A MUST Read for Every Writer

by Lynn H Blackburn @LynnHBlackburn

I’ve been reviewing books on The Write Conversation for a long time, and I don’t think I’ve ever said this before, but here goes:

Everyone needs to read Adorning the Dark by Andrew Peterson. 

If you don’t already know, Andrew Peterson is a songwriter and novelist (and a lot of other things) and Adorning the Dark is part memoir, part encouragement, part writing advice, and part exploration into what it means to do creative work that will “adorn the dark with the light of Christ.”

Wednesday, February 5, 2020

How to Kill a Character in Your Novel

by Sarah Sally Hamer @SarahSallyHamer

Yes, there are right ways and wrong ways to kill a character in a fiction story. And, even if we're working with non-fiction and telling a true story, we might still need to determine how to tell how a character will die. We often have characters that, for one reason or another, need to be left behind. Maybe it's a mentor, like Obi-Wan Kenobi in Star Wars. We know from the beginning of Charlotte's Web (at least, some of us know!) that the spider, Charlotte, will die, because few small critters like her live very long. But there's a time and place to help make the story more real, to create the most impact. And, we have to find it.

Tuesday, February 4, 2020

The Good Word—For Writers & For the Rest of Us

by PeggySue Wells @PeggySueWells

Father of seven and author of the bestselling series Dragons in our Midst, Oracles of Fire, Children of the Bard, The Reapers Trilogy, Echoes from the Edge, and Dragons of Starlight, Bryan Davis received memorable advice at the beginning of his writing career.

Monday, February 3, 2020

Writing Conferences and Story Pitches

by Ralene Burke @RaleneB

With Realm Makers registration having opened on February 1, I have had writers conferences on my mind a lot lately. As Marketing Director for Realm Makers, I have to know the ins and outs of the conference in order to highlight the important aspects in our marketing efforts as well as answer any questions that may come through social media (or at least be able to find the answer). 

One thing writers always want to know about is WHO is attending the conference (agents, publishers, mentors, etc.). And then they want to know what each one wants to hear/have at their pitch appointments. 

Sunday, February 2, 2020

A Terrible Torrent of Words: Writing from Grief

by Audrey Frank @AudreyCFrank

Save me, O God, for the waters have come up to my neck. I sink in the miry depths, where there is no foothold. I have come into the deep waters; the floods engulf me (Psalm 69:1-3).

What does the writer do when grief releases a terrible torrent of words in her soul, words so rough and distressing she almost dare not record them? The world she thought she knew, it would seem, has been permanently altered by loss. The words she once used to package her thoughts no longer seem to fit. She needs new ones. Superlative adjectives.

Saturday, February 1, 2020

Infusing the Characters We Write With the Strength To Live Well

by Tim Suddeth @TimSuddeth

This weekend, I was fortunate to be able to celebrate two lives that were obviously well lived.

On Saturday, my family went to the visitation of the 93-year-old mother of a friend of mine. Her obituary, told how she had grown up during the depression, had a career working for various federal departments, and, upon her retirement at 62, took up competitive swimming and continued swimming throughout her eighties. (See this link for my take on obituaries.) Every time I met her, she had a big, beautiful smile and wanted to talk about my family and me.