Tag Archives: authors

The Fragrance of Fiction

By Carol Lerner I’ve been reading all kinds of fiction lately. This is a good thing, as for years I’ve had difficulty finding fiction that kept my interest. I’ve finally figured out what makes me stick with a story-it’s the … Continue reading

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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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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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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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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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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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Playing it Safe

Playing it Safe By Katherine Reay Working on my third manuscript seems to be an exercise in conquering fear. Someone told me that my second would be the most difficult, but now that it’s behind me – and it will … Continue reading

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Define Success

By Jennifer Sienes I am not a published author. Let me repeat that-I am not a published author. Okay, technically, I suppose that’s not true. I’ve had some short stories and an article published. But since the majority of my … Continue reading

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When They Say No

by Catherine West When my agent, Rachelle Gardner, offered me representation, I had just completed a manuscript called Yesterday’s Tomorrow. Rachelle liked it because it was ‘different’. I agreed. I certainly hadn’t seen any books about a female journalist who … Continue reading

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A Rose By Any Other Name …

by Maureen Lang The more books an author writes, the greater the struggle to find the right character name-ones they haven’t used before. Like everything else, names are subject to taste. Take Homer, for example. Not your unusual choice for … Continue reading

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Know What You’re Entitled to as a Writer

By Cynthia Ruchti As you make progress on this journey of writing, it’s important you know your rights. What are you entitled to? 1. Have a contest judge evaluate your entry according to how hard you worked and how long … Continue reading

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