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Writer Karma: Don’t Be a Taker

January 5, 2016 Random Musings
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Everyone who knows me and follows my blog knows I love to help others. Most people who contact me are appreciative, and I really am happy to help. But there are a few… *sigh*

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Digging into Research: Consider the Source

October 27, 2015 Writing Stuff
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Last week, we talked about how we can add diversity to our stories in a respectful way, and no matter what kind of story we write, we’re probably going to need to research something. Whether we’re referring to an aspect of diversity, a setting, or a character’s job, we can’t know everything about everything.

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Writing Diversity: How Can We Avoid Issues?

October 22, 2015 Writing Stuff
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The real world is filled with diversity, and our stories should be the same way. There’s no “one right way” to portray diverse characters, but there are wrong ways to portray diversity. However, there are steps we can take to minimize—as much as possible—the potential of “getting it wrong.”

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The Risks of Offering a Freebie

September 29, 2015 Writing Stuff
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A common suggestion for how to attract readers is “offer a freebie.” However, there are risks to that strategy that we should be aware of. We can’t make the best decisions for us unless we have the information we need to make an informed choice that takes the pros and cons into consideration.

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Criticism & Reviews: How Do You Handle Feedback?

September 24, 2015 Writing Stuff
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For many writers, the point of writing is to connect with others through our words. Because of that desire, it’s hard to ignore feedback, and during editing, we don’t want to ignore suggestions. But what about after we publish? Should we read reviews of our published work?

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Character Likability and Subtext

September 17, 2015 Writing Stuff
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How are villains, character likability, subtext, and point-of-view all related? In many stories, our antagonist is a non-POV character, and for non-POV characters, my previous tips about likability will be limited to subtext. So even though we might not be trying to make our villain likable, we might struggle to make them layered.

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3 1/2 Tips for Fixing an Unlikable Character

September 15, 2015 Writing Stuff
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In writing, it’s difficult to balance “not enough” and “too much.” Not enough flaws can make our characters flat, and too many flaws can make our characters unlikable. Some genres can get away with unlikable characters, but for those stories that can’t, here are 3 1/2 tips to fix the problem.

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Editing Mistakes: How Forgiving of a Reader Are You?

September 10, 2015 Over-Achieving Perfectionist
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An interesting conversation grew out of Misti Wolanski’s guest post earlier this week. She mentioned that sometimes readers enjoy finding typos. Let’s take a closer look at what that means for readers and for us as authors? Should we leave typos in our work? What say you…

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Can We Learn from Reading “Bad” Writing?

August 4, 2015 Writing Stuff
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When we end up with a “dud” of bad writing from a book we’ve purchased, what should we do? Should we treat it as a learning experience or just close the book? My answer has changed over the years, so let’s take a closer look at when we might want to slog through bad writing to try to learn what not to do—and when we wouldn’t.

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When Does It Make Sense to Make Big Revisions?

July 30, 2015 Writing Stuff
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Revisions are never easy. Unlike just plain edits, which might have us questioning a word, revisions might have us questioning everything. Sometimes the feedback we receive might cause us to wonder if the suggestions are a good idea for our story. How can we tell? Which battles should we pick when debating our publisher’s editor?

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