Thursday, March 31, 2022

How to Become a Mentally Strong Writer

By Edie Melson @EdieMelson 

Pursuing the craft of writing as a calling and/or a career can be an incredibly rewarding path through life. It can also be equally difficult. When we create something and then offer it up to the world, we open ourselves up to criticism and judgement. The painful things said about what we write is an inescapable part of being a writer. 

Wednesday, March 30, 2022

As Writers We've Accepted the Post of Ambassador

by Edie Melson @EdieMelson

Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, certain that God is appealing through us. 2 Corinthians 5:20

I’m constantly amazed at how God chooses to use me in the work He’s doing in this 
world. It’s humbling and terrifying at the same time.

Tuesday, March 29, 2022

Effective Blogging: 14 Dos & Don'ts for Writers to follow

by Edie Melson @EdieMelson

I love to blog, and I try to share my love of blogging when I teach at writing conferences.

I also know that many of you aren’t such fans. Many try to love blogging because it’s a good way to connect with readers and build an online presence. Others, don’t even try to love it, but do it out of necessity. The rest are like me, and enjoy the process as well as the connections it brings.

Monday, March 28, 2022

Top 10 Tips To Survive a Writing Conference

by Ane Mulligan @AneMulligan

On my writers loop, someone said this was their first time to go to a writing conference and asked for advice. 

Sunday, March 27, 2022

Write an Active Main Character with These 5 Tips

by Zena Dell Lowe @ZenaDellLowe

One of the most important rules of story is that your main character must drive the action of the story. He cannot be passive. When you have a passive character, it means that things are happening to him as opposed to him making things happen in the story. 

The problem is, there are times when a main character is rendered powerless. For example, what happens if the bad guys suddenly take your main character by surprise? What if his plans backfire? What if all hell breaks loose? Your main character is supposed to drive the action of the story, but how can he when so many things happen that are beyond that character’s control? What can we do when circumstances put our character in a situation where all he can do is react?

Saturday, March 26, 2022

Embrace the P.O.I.N.T. of Being a Serious Writer

by Edie Melson @EdieMelson

Many of us came to the world of writing in a roundabout way. A lot of us don’t have degrees that qualify us. Because of that, we often struggle with insecurity. 

We strive for validation through publication. 

But no matter how many awards we win, things we publish, followers we have, the only validation that lasts is confidence. 

And confidence is a decision, not a designation.

Friday, March 25, 2022

10 Tips for a Successful In-Person Book Launch Party

by Lori Hatcher @LoriHatcher2

Two years ago, I planned an amazing in-person launch party to celebrate the release of my first book with Our Daily Bread Publishing, Refresh Your Faith. The week before the event, our country went into COVID lockdown. I scrambled to put together a Facebook Live event instead. (You can read Ten Components of a Successful Facebook Live Launch Party HERE.)

Thursday, March 24, 2022

Common Writing Obstacles (Part 3):  Perfectionism

by Henry McLaughlin @RiverBendSagas

Perfectionism is the bane of many a writer, even experienced ones. Each story must be perfect or it’s no good. There’s no middle ground. There’s no forgiveness for ourselves. We don’t allow for the fact we’re human, we’re frail, and, despite our pride, we don’t know it all.

Wednesday, March 23, 2022

The Wow Factor of a Writer's Imagination!

by DiAnn Mills @DiAnnMills

Fiction writers use their imaginations to mentally transport readers into an adventure. Imagination and creativity are not the same tools, but they work together. 

Imagination propels creativity by connecting what our mind sees with how best to show it to a reader: an inner landscape is used to develop the outer landscape. For example, a writer imagines a concept and forms the words with events to make it happen, paving the way for an exciting adventure. 

Tuesday, March 22, 2022

Dipping the Quill Deeper: A Question of Worth

by Eva Marie Everson

This year I will see my 41st and my 42nd books published. One of those books is based on a continuing class I’ve given at writers conferences for the past several years, a class initially titled “Labyrinth.”

The idea for “Labyrinth” came after I served on faculty at the Blue Lake Christian Writers Conference in Andalusia, Alabama. While there, and just as I was about to leave, I picked up a folded piece of paper that had been on the desk of my lodging room, but one I had not bothered to look at before. The paper held information about the prayer labyrinth located on the conference center’s grounds.

Monday, March 21, 2022

Prepare to get Multiple Contract for Books

by Karen Whiting @KarenHWhiting

You start with a book idea, but adding a little more brainstorming can turn one idea into topics for several related books. That can spawn multiple contracts for multiple books or a series, in fiction or nonfiction. Be focused as create proposals that pitch more than one book.

Saturday, March 19, 2022

When a Writer is Discouraged, Pause and Look to God

by Emme Gannon @GannonEmme

I often struggle to squeeze words from my soul when I write. I admit it. I ask God if I heard Him correctly. Am I wasting my time, Lord? If this is Your will for me, why is it sometimes so hard? Why do the words often seem frozen inside with no hope of escape? 

Friday, March 18, 2022

Just Write It!

by Crystal Bowman

In my last post I shared how I get inspiration and ideas for my writing from everyday life, but my writing projects are not always based on “inspiration.” Sometimes my inspiration comes from having a publishing deadline. I am a monthly contributor to a children’s magazine as well as a few online blog sites. I also accept work-for-hire contracts with publishers that typically have a shorter deadline than my royalty contracts. So there are times when I write not because I have a creative idea, but because I have an obligation to fulfill an agreement with a publisher.

Thursday, March 17, 2022

How to Use Blog Links to Increase Your Website’s Search Engine Rank

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

A website’s PageRank tells Google and other search engines that the page is valuable or has important information on it. Pages with a higher rank usually appear on the first few pages of a search engine result page (SERP). Numerous factors help a page or website rank well. One of those factors is links to and from the website.

Wednesday, March 16, 2022

How to Write to Inspire, Not Condemn – Part 2

by Katy Kauffman @KatyKauffman28

Open the door. Swing the door wide to your ideas, your understanding of Scripture, your world of experiences and insights. Open the door to your reader, and beckon them to enter your book and discover the encouragement, drink in the Scripture, and stand firm on the promises of God. 

Tuesday, March 15, 2022

Tips to Develop an Ear for Writing Dialogue

by Edie Melson @EdieMelson

I read somewhere once that good dialogue is a conversation with the boring parts taken out. I completely agree. Just record and transcribe a normal conversation and you’ll see that it isn’t all that interesting to read without a lot of judicious editing.

But even armed with that knowledge, how do we as writers, determine what’s boring and what’s not? That’s a skill that takes practice. 

Monday, March 14, 2022

Sunday, March 13, 2022

When Our Writing Life is Stripped Bare

By Martin Wiles @LinesFromGod

The bushes, once loaded, were bare.

For the first time in a long time, I had a large garden plot that produced well. When the spring crops finished, I planted purple hull peas. I had not planted them in some years, but I loved them and looked forward to cooking them and covering my white rice with them and the “pot liquor” (juice, for those not from the South). 

Saturday, March 12, 2022

What Does Hope Look Like?

by Beth K. Vogt @BethVogt

Have you watched the news this past week? 

It would be so easy to leave the news on all day long. Or to keep checking my news app on my phone. The all-caps headlines scream for our attention:
  • War in Ukraine
  • Ongoing economic stressors of increasing gasoline prices and inflation 
  • The bitter infighting between political parties
  • Another heartbreaking school shooting 
We can all agree there’s a lot that could distract us from our writing.

Friday, March 11, 2022

The Lord’s Prayer for Writers (Part 1)

by Joshua J. Masters @JoshuaJMasters

The Christian writer should live in continual prayer. That may feel overwhelming, but Jesus said, “…when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you” (Matthew 6:6 NIV).

Thursday, March 10, 2022

Prepare for a Writing Conference with These Never-Before-Told Tips!

by Julie Lavender @JLavenderWrites

Conference season is upon us, and stellar articles abound on what to take to a conference and how to prepare for one. You’ll find informed articles right here on this site. 

However, some of the more knowledgeable contributors have left out a few important suggestions. I’ll share them with you below. (Lest I stir the ire of those who think I’m discounting others’ expertise, you obviously don’t speak snark, so I suggest you move on to another form of social media and find someone else to pick on. If, however, sarcasm is your second language, like mine, read on for important conference tips.) 

Wednesday, March 9, 2022

What’s the Difference Between a Writing Edit and a Writing Critique?

by Linda Gilden @LindaGilden

Writers sometimes get confused by the difference in an edit and a critique. They are definitely two different processes and both will benefit your work and help you grow as a writer. Let’s see if we can clarify what each is and the benefits to your writing.

Tuesday, March 8, 2022

3 Reasons Why Writers Need Good Writing Friends

by Cindy K. Sproles @CindyDevoted

The wonderful thing about attending writing conferences is making friends. It's a little intimidating when we attend, especially as a first-timer. There are little to no other conferees that we know, and that means we shrink just a little. We may even wonder where that confidence went we had before we left home. Let's be honest. It's a little scary. This is why peers are essential. 

Monday, March 7, 2022

Update Your Website with These Spring Cleaning Tips

by Kristen Hogrefe Parnell @KHogrefeParnell

Who is ready for spring this month? I live in Florida, and even the Sunshine State has been nippy this winter. 

For many of us, spring cleaning involves purging our homes of the cobwebs, dust, and excess that we don’t want or need. As writers, let’s not forget to do the same for our websites.

Sunday, March 6, 2022

21 Ways to Pray for Your Writing

by Edie Melson @EdieMelson 

Anyone who knows me, knows that I only have one hard and fast rule about writing:

Pray before my fingers hit the keys!

While some of the things we pray are obvious, some aren’t. Today I’m sharing other things to pray that you may not have considered. 

Saturday, March 5, 2022

3 Reasons a Writer Might Feel Like a Failure

by Tim Suddeth @TimSuddeth

Have you ever felt like a failure?

That’s a silly question to ask writers, or any human being. No matter what we do, there is always a nagging voice that’s going to pop up and say we aren’t enough. We don’t belong.

I’ve heard this from people just beginning their writing journeys. And, surprisingly, I’ve heard it from authors who we would think are too successful to have any doubts.

Friday, March 4, 2022

Writing an Un-Put-Downable Character Part 2: Conflict

by A.C. Williams @ACW_Author

Is there anything better in a story than a great character? I don’t think so, but I could be biased. I LOVE characters. I will remember a well-designed character long after I’ve forgotten the story they’re in. 

But do great characters just happen? Are they an accident? A lucky spin of the wheel? Not at all. Like anything else excellent in life, a great character requires intentional design. I love creating characters using a ten-step system to flesh them out and make them un-put-downable.

Thursday, March 3, 2022

How to Support an Author Through the Launch of a Book

by Lynn H. Blackburn @LynnHBlackburn

A writer friend who isn’t published yet recently asked what she could do to support me during a book launch. 

While I’m far from an expert, I did just release by seventh published book. **send chocolate** Having a book release is exciting, amazing, and wonderful. It’s also exhausting, overwhelming, and terrifying. **send coffee** And anything you as a reader, fellow author, friend, or loved one of the author can do to help will be greatly appreciated. 

Wednesday, March 2, 2022

How Does a Writer Build a Story?

by Sarah Sally Hamer @SarahSallyHamer

One Step at a Time!

Writing can be overwhelming. The blank page/screen in front of us can make us feel like a total failure. But writing is just like anything else—we can make it happen one step at a time and fill all the pages we need to.

Tuesday, March 1, 2022

The Main Characteristics About the Main Characters We Write

by PeggySue Wells @PeggySueWells

Stories are plot driven or character driven, and even better when you create a story that is plot and character driven.

Plot is what people do and why they do it. Character is the internal organization and structure of a person that motivates how the character responds to external pressures. In story, the writer places a specific personality into a specific setting and the reader follows as the character reacts and responds.