Finding Your Target Audience

I was talking to an author friend, and she’s working on a series that has been difficult for her to finish because she worries that people are going to think the books suck.  I originally intended to write a post on confronting this horrible feeling (because I have it from time to time, too).  I…

Dragon Speech-to-Text Software: A Review

Back in December 2016, my boss recommended that I try Dragon, or some other speech-to-text software. I don’t remember how the subject came up (I do remember it was during the office Christmas party, so it probably had something to do with vacation plans and plans for life), but he said that as a writer…

It Is Possible To Write Fast And Have Quality Content

I just saw a blog post from someone who was basically saying that writers should not produce more than 2-3 books a year.  (I assume this person meant 50K words or more per book.)   I’ve heard this argument a dozen times over the years, and each time, it boils down to the same thing, “You…

Backstory isn’t Character

(IMPORTANT NOTE: I will be differentiating character, as in a person, and character, as in aspects of a person, by capitalizing the former and leaving the latter lowercase. So from here on out in this post, Character refers to people, and character refers to qualities of a Character.) Happy New Year, everyone! I thought I’d…

Reestablishing a Writing Routine

We go through great changes in our lives. It’s frankly inevitable. In fact, I remember someone telling me once in high school that in a twenty-five year period, it was likely that we would change our city/town, home, job, education status, socioeconomic status, political party, religion, and/or a whole bunch of other stuff. And when…

How to Deal with Idea Fragments

Imagine JK Rowling never thought of Harry Potter (I know, scary thought, but bear with me), and that you just had the idea for a boy wizard. You recognize that the story could be good. Very good, in fact. The question is, what else do you include? What does your boy wizard do? What is…

Letting Your Characters be Who They Are (A Deeper Look Into Point of View)

Point of view is one of those tricky subjects we often struggle with as writers.  I know I’ve been trying to get a solid understanding on this since I started seriously writing back in late 2007.  Just the other day while I was reading one of my children’s newsletters from school, I came across something that gave me…

Tips For Surviving NaNoWriMo

As we all know, National Novel Writing Month, better known as NaNoWriMo, is just around the corner (though considering it’s done all over the world these days, it might need a name change). If you are not familiar with the tradition, it’s basically that every year authors try to write a novel in the course…

A Trip in a Police Cruiser, Got me Thinking

Last week my husband and I trekked to Grand Island, Neb., to attend the state fair. Little did we know that day would end with a ride inside a police cruiser. No, we did not do anything wrong. In fact, the policeman took pity on us. Let me explain. Every year my husband and I…

Avoiding the Info-Dump

I graduated from college back in May after a very busy senior year, during which I was fortunate enough to not only do a senior thesis, but to do a novel that I really wanted to write as a senior thesis and get excellent feedback from my advisor and a fellow senior. Around April my…

Saying Good-Bye

         We all have those years we want to put behind us, and this year is one of those for me. It began with a series of deaths starting with my sister-in-law; my husband’s brother (who was married to the sister-in-law mentioned above); to the death of a colleague reporter I worked with years ago…