For Writers on Craft

Below are quick links to my blog posts for authors on the craft of writing:

How to think laterally about editor feedback: In my opinion, the editor is always right… about the existence of a problem. Or at least usually. I let feedback ping around in my head for a day or three, and more often than not, it will land in one of the following seven categories. Continue reading here.

Fixing implausibility issues in your fiction: My first editor, back before I switched genres, gave me some advice about believability issues in my manuscript that I’ll never forget. Continue reading here.

How to think like your future book buyers: Marketers train their brains to think like their targeted consumers. Here are a few questions to ask yourself in order to get in the mindset of your future book buyers. These prompts are geared toward the craft of writing as well as the marketing side of things. Continue reading here.

5 ways to find inspiration for the next great villain: The five methods I describe for brainstorming villains are most applicable if your manuscript or screenplay contains at least an element of the thriller, suspense, or horror genres. To read more, click here.

5 ways to temper the preachy in your plot: We all have issues we care about, and anyone who tells you novels shouldn’t have agendas hasn’t read any lately. But how do we as authors plot issues into our manuscripts without coming off as preachy and one-sided? To find out five ways to prevent “preachy” from showing up in your future book reviews, click here.

My list of blog hops for authors: The benefits of blog hops are many. Sometimes called link-up parties, hops are a great way to meet other writers/bloggers and build your author community; gain traffic and engagement on your site; and I’ve even seen them used as a tool in virtual book tours. To read my list of ongoing, everyone-is-welcome blog hops for authors, click here.

How to polish your manuscript and query an editor: The Internet is flush with editors. So I should be able to email my favourite genre matches, and they’ll jump at the chance to work with me, right? Not necessarily. Logic dictates that editors can only take on so many projects at a time. Editor Andi Cumbo explains how to put your best foot forward. Continue reading here.

Developing your reading list, a strategy for authors: With so many options and only so many reading hours in the day, how do we as authors narrow to the most practical reading list? The logical side of my brain needed a way to sort the options, and the result is my list of the eight categories of books (and articles) we should be thinking about when determining our reading list. Continue reading here.

Writing at the intersection of originality and what sells: For those of us at the beginning of our fiction empire journey, should we be striving for novel novels or aiming instead for something at the intersection of originality and what’s already selling? Continue reading here.

Announcing new monthly blog hop for authors: The #AuthorToolboxBlogHop is a monthly blog hop on the theme of resources/learning for authors: posts related to the craft of writing, editing, querying, marketing, publishing, blogging tips for authors, reviews of author-related products, anything that an author would find helpful. Continue reading here.

2017 list of Twitter chats for writers: Here’s my list of 25 active Twitter chats. Search the list for which ones you might be interested in checking out, add a reminder to your calendar, and join in the discussions. Continue reading here.

Literary Agent Elizabeth Copps offers advice on what comes after NaNoWriMo: Elizabeth Copps offers advice on when manuscripts are ready for agent eyes, industry standards for novel length and how to make sure your query letter is up to snuff. Continue reading here.

5 successful authors discuss daily word count goals: I asked five successful authors to discuss their year-round strategy and was surprised by the differences and flexibility in approaches. See for yourself… Continue reading here.

Hey Authors: Are you a Word Hoarder? You should be: What if you could tap into the expanded vocabulary of authors you admire, with the end goal of using those words in your own writing? It’s easier than you think. Just start a Word Hoard. Continue reading here.

My top five writing anxieties: In ascending order of mind-numbing horribleness, here are my plotting and daily word count anxieties. Continue reading here.