advice for writers

Branding 101: Keeping Our Sanity while Building a Brand

March 23, 2017 Over-Achieving Perfectionist
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We can’t do it all, and as Jenny Hansen mentioned recently, that includes limiting our social media platforms. It’s so easy in this business to overdo things, and that includes our branding efforts. Let’s take a look at how to find (and keep) the right balance for the sake of our sanity.

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How to Make Every Story Idea the Best It Can Be — Guest: Jeff Lyons

March 21, 2017 Writing Stuff
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Some stories tell an engaging tale that’s entertaining but doesn’t necessarily feel deep. Other stories make us feel like we’re changed by reading them. Today, Jeff Lyons shares his insights into how to make each type of story the best they can be.

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Writing Craft: Balancing Rules and Voice

March 16, 2017 Writing Stuff
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Many aspects of writing are subjective, so we often need to discuss how to find the right balance. One element we need to balance is the rules of writing versus our writing voice. How can we know when we should break the rules for the sake of our voice?

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3 Steps to Raise Our Story’s Stakes

March 14, 2017 Writing Stuff
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It’s time for another post as a Resident Writing Coach over at Angela Ackerman and Becca Puglisi’s Writers Helping Writers site, and this time we’re exploring 3 steps we can take to raise our story’s stakes, the consequences for the characters if they fail to reach their goals.

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Story Structure: What’s the Purpose…for Readers?

March 9, 2017 Writing Stuff
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Ever wonder how many writing “rules” have a reason beyond “because I said so”? Story structure exists not just because it makes our story stronger, but also because the story beats help communicate with readers–and understanding how can help us write and revise our story.

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Brain Science: Right Brain vs. Left Brain vs. Creativity

March 7, 2017 Writing Stuff
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Ever heard of the left-brain versus right-brain dichotomy—our logical, language-focused left brain versus our creative and artistic right brain? What does that mean for authors, with our need for creativity and language? Let’s dig deeper into this brain science…

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Story Immersion: What Pulls You In?

March 2, 2017 Writing Stuff
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When I first joined Goodreads, their account form asked me: “What Kind of Books Do You Like to Read?” My answer to that question helped me realize that I love becoming immersed in a story, the sense that we’re not just reading words on a page. But what creates story immersion?

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Faking It: Making Our Actions Count

February 28, 2017 Random Musings
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We’ve probably all heard the phrase: Fake it until you make it. Faking it isn’t always easy, but the effort of faking it can push us forward. Over time, we’ll often discover we’re not faking it anymore. What would be even better, though, was if faking it wasn’t as hard, right?

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Are There Story Elements You Avoid Writing?

February 23, 2017 Writing Stuff
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The stories we write are affected by our worldview, but that’s not the only thing that might make us avoid writing about certain elements. By looking at the other reasons we might have, we can decide whether our avoidance makes sense or points out an opportunity to improve.

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How to Make Our Blog Images Tell a Story

February 21, 2017 Over-Achieving Perfectionist
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Many forms of writing include visual elements, but there’s a difference between images that simply provide a visual element, and images that add to the writing. Let’s take a look at how we can make the visuals we include with our work add to the meaning of our words.

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