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Category Archives: Advice

Three Magic Phrases for a Writer

by Richard Mabry Early in my road to writing, author and teacher Alton Gansky taught me to ask a magic question: “What if?” One of his books began when he noted the presence of a military installation in a deserted … Continue reading

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5 things to do to prepare for the ACFW Conference

by Susan May Warren The ACFW conference is less than two months away and I can’t wait! Even now, I’m gearing up to hang out with my favorite peeps, fellow authors and the My Book Therapy community (The Voices.) And, … Continue reading

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Demystifying Contest Scores

By Lisa Godfrees We’re writers. At some point in our careers, we entered a writing contest. Some of us found encouragement there. Maybe we received kind remarks from a judge that gave us courage to continue. Maybe we semi-finaled, finaled, … Continue reading

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Making Research Fun

By Donna Schlachter I’ve seen the way some authors’ eyes nearly roll up into their heads at the word, “research”. After all, that’s just dry, boring stuff. We’re always told to ‘write what we know’. If we have to research … Continue reading

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Are You Living Your Happily Ever After?

by Courtney Hilbert “We always believe our first love is our last, and our last love is our first.” Unknown As a writer, the palette of love provides innumerable shades of color with which to paint a story. Despite the … Continue reading

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Writing for “The One”

By Kariss Lynch Every Tuesday night, three thousand young adults across Dallas come for a little get together we call The Porch. For three years now, I’ve volunteered, entering the worship center to fulfill my assigned task of shepherding people … Continue reading

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Writing Effective Book Club Discussion Questions

By Sarah Sundin Book clubs. As readers, we delight in socializing with book-lovers. As writers, we delight in connecting with avid readers. Since I belonged to a book club long before I was published, I knew the importance of a … Continue reading

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Breaking the Rules

by Laura McClellan Any novelist who studies craft reads a lot about the rules: Show, don’t tell. Avoid adverbs. No head-hopping. These rules have developed to help us create fiction that welcomes the reader in, with no barriers to the … Continue reading

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Are You A Predictable Writer?

by Lynn Hobbs How often have you started reading a book and quickly figured out what would happen next? Ho-hum…how boring. Interest is lost, yes, but any reader will notice a predictable pattern after several similar books by the same … Continue reading

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Real Civil War Spies

by Mary Ellis While researching my latest romance, The Lady and the Officer, I discovered several real-life spies whose lives provided plenty of inspiration. Probably the most famous Confederate spy was Belle Boyd. At 17, Belle was arrested for shooting … Continue reading

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Are You Imprisoned?

By Donna K. Rice In Ephesians 3:1, Paul describes himself as a prisoner of Jesus Christ for the Gentiles. Paul was Jesus’ prisoner. The Apostle proclaimed himself void of options in career pursuits. His love for Jesus bound Paul to … Continue reading

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Permission to Noodle

by Anne Mateer Confession time. For all my aversion to math, I thrive on measurable productivity. A number of words written. A number of pages revised. The number of books read in a week, month or year. The amount of … Continue reading

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Genetics-Based Grammarianism

By Michelle Arch In a world of tweeting, texting, chattering, status updates, desktop messaging, flash fiction, and the ubiquitous shrunken novel, rhetoric and the art of epic articulation, sadly, are no longer appreciated and extolled. Murky millennial jargon and cryptic … Continue reading

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Research Surprises

by Susan Lyttek One of the first things I do when I get an idea for a story is research. I enjoy the process. More often than not, its results surprise me, taking the story in a different direction or … Continue reading

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Motivation’s the Key

By Ane Mulligan Back on April 4th, I blogged about the 8 basic lies people believe. It can be as innocent as an ever-tired, exasperated mother wiping up yet another spilled glass of milk. “Can’t you do anything right?” If … Continue reading

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Posted in Advice, Authors and writing, Encouragement, Friends of ACFW | 2 Comments