30 Years of Blessings – Looking Back to Move Ahead

Today, as I look ahead to the New Year, I’m also celebrating another big milestone. Today, I turn 30. And while I’m definitely feeling a wee bit old, I’m also feeling tremendously thankful. For the health and energy to pursue my dreams. For long-time faithful friends and a family I adore. For the privilege of…

Why You Can’t Afford an Editor

Writing is an awfully expensive journey, isn’t it? Let’s keep it uber real here today, friend. Honest with each other over a cup of my favorite peach tea. The author’s road is a hard one. Been there, got the t-shirt. Your laptop is not exactly cheap. Add to that a word processing program, office supplies,…

Why a writing coach is your best friend

People live at the heart of your story. You may think your book is about you. And it absolutely is. Your unique voice breathes life into a story that only you can tell. But it’s not JUST about you. It takes a village of beta readers, critique partners, writing coaches, editors, agents, proofreaders, graphic designers,…

The Introvert’s Guide to Networking

What’s a word that will make almost any introverted writer shudder? Networking. Or perhaps its cousin, platform. Ugh. I have to talk to people? Can’t I just hide in my back bedroom and create such an enthralling novel that everyone will buy it on the merit of craft alone (without the unpleasantness of social interaction…

The Introvert’s Guide to Writing in Community

When people think of writers, they don’t really think of community. More often, the stereotype of the solitary author skipping meals and pounding away at a keyboard in some attic comes to mind instead! (And let’s be real, that stereotype exists for a reason. It happens. *deadline* *cough*). But the creative process doesn’t happen in…

A Writing Conference Survival Guide for the insecure author

I was a 19-year-old kid who didn’t know much of anything when I went to my first writing conference. In fact, I was mainly going because I’d enjoyed writing stories with friends in high school, and I wanted an excuse to hang out with my best friend. 🙂 It was one of the most terrifying…

How to impress an agent or editor in 15 minutes or less

They say public speaking is people’s most common fear, even more than dying. So I suppose it’s not surprising that most writers fear pitching to agents and editors more than any other aspect of the writing and publishing process. Oh. And then there’s the bit where a disproportionate number of writers are shy introverts. That…

What kind of edit does your book need?

What’s involved in a book edit? Are there different types of edits? How do I know which kind of edit my book needs? Fair questions, and ones I hear often when talking to other authors and clients. But finding a simple, clear answer is surprisingly hard to come by. Terms are used interchangeably, and opinions…

Your Novel Check-Up (Part 2)

Welcome back to the novel doctor’s office! This week we’ll be taking a look at your story structure and whether it hits all the key notes. Inciting Incident: What jump-starts your story and takes your character out of their normal into their not-normal? Terrorists attack a key government building. Harry receives his letter to Hogwarts/visit…

Your Novel Check-Up (Part 1)

What makes a great book? Is it the story? The characters? The age-old conflict between good and evil? Or, perhaps, the thrilling richness of escaping into a fantastical new world? From a business stand-point, what is it about a book that makes an editor or publisher sit up and take notice (or yawn and pour…

Why dressing professionally is like writing a book

Can I make a confession? I love fashion. Yes, I’m a slightly nerdy tomboy who loves action movies and rolls my eyes at drama. But I also love fashion. For artsy “free expression” types (that means me, by the way) “fashion” is usually whatever we feel like wearing. For introverts, fashion is often just another word for…

10 Tips for Working with an Editor

Congratulations! You’ve completed your manuscript, chosen your editor, and are ready to make your baby shine. In fact, a good edit (or several) are all that stand between you and glorious publication. Right? Well, it’s not quite that simple. Editing is a lot of work. Re-writing is a lot of work. And working with an…