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Category Archives: tips

A Safe Investment

By Christa MacDonald Recently, one beautiful Saturday, I hit the plant shops with my two youngest kids and bought annuals for the mailbox planter and a few herbs for the kitchen garden. Massachusetts has a short growing season and, although … Continue reading

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Crafting A Great First Line (Hooking The Reader)

By Rachel Hauck In a world where indie and traditional authors are scraping for every bit of shelf space and reader attention, we have to up our game. One of the best ways is to craft a dynamite first line. … Continue reading

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A Story Needs People

by Ann H. Gabhart “I will go to my grave in a state of abject endless fascination that we all have the capacity to become emotionally involved with a personality that doesn’t exist.” (Berkeley Breathed) As a writer I have become … Continue reading

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Celebrate Independence Day!

By Carrie Stuart Parks Happy 4th of July! My new book, Formula of Deception, will have released yesterday. In it are some historical facts that I researched and I’d like to reflect on as we celebrate our independence. A theme … Continue reading

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The Writing Life

by Ane Mulligan My latest WIP is either going to kill me or be my opus. My main character did not reveal as much as I prefer before I started writing the story. I knew her home was steeped in … Continue reading

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Resolving Tension

By Sarah Hamaker As writers, we work with tension all the time—without tension, our stories would sag and our heroes and heroines would have very boring relationships. But this blog is about the tension we experience between what we want … Continue reading

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Springing into the Next Story

by Jan Drexler Spring is here, and it’s time to start my next book! With this new beginning, I’ve already spent hours of preparation. I’ve cultivated the bed of ideas, throwing out stones and stray roots. I’ve poured over research … Continue reading

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Posted in Authors and writing, Brainstorming, Characters, Friends of ACFW, Outlines, Plots, Setting, Story Structure, tips, writing | Tagged | 1 Comment

Tips for Fighting the Dreaded Writer’s Block

By Amy Clipston Through the years I’ve found that my book projects fall into two categories—they either write themselves or writing them feels like having my teeth drilled. In other words, the characters either tell me the story or I … Continue reading

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What About Book Reviews?

By Nora St. Laurent A book review is a thoughtful discussion of a book’s content, style, strengths, value, limitations and recommendation for it (or not) for possible readers of a genre and/or subject. Here is an example of a possible … Continue reading

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Observations from a Writer

By Denise Hunter Most writers are observers by nature, aren’t we? We observe ourselves, we observe others, then we use what we observe in our writing. Like the other day. I was driving down the road alone and had to … Continue reading

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How to Write a Novel

By Henry McLaughlin When I’m introduced as a writer to a group of non-writers I get a wide range of reactions. Some look at me as if I’m from another planet. Others back away as if they might catch a … Continue reading

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Choose a Setting You Love

By H.L. Wegley Thirty-eight years ago, my wife and I and our three kids boxed up enough supplies for a week and headed for Lake Chelan in Central Washington, a glacier-fed lake, fifty-five miles long, nestled snugly between Cascade Mountain … Continue reading

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Back Story – When & How

By Ane Mulligan When I first started writing, I did what most new writers do. Believing the reader couldn’t understand my story or like the heroine without knowing her back story, I loaded the first chapter with all that information. … Continue reading

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Fall down, get up. Again.

By Davalynn Spencer When we hear that people have experience in a particular field or endeavor, we often equate that experience with success and only success. However, if that were the case, their experience would not be genuine. Experience bleeds. … Continue reading

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Four Approaches to Character Names

by Christa Kinde Whenever I’m invited to talk about the Threshold Series, one question keeps cropping up. How do you pick names for your characters? While it might sound like I’m dodging the question, the honest answer is … it … Continue reading

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