Jami Gold

Strengthening Stakes: It’s Not about Going Big

September 27, 2016 Writing Stuff
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A story’s stakes are one element that keeps readers turning pages because they want to see if our characters succeed. At first glance, we might think bigger stakes are better for sucking in readers, but not every story lends themselves to huge stakes. Are “quieter” stories doomed to fail the “page-turner” test?

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Increasing Our Productivity: Why It’s Not Simple

September 22, 2016 Writing Stuff
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Most (probably all) writers want to increase their productivity because we want to make the most of the writing time we have. However, we’re all different, so we might need to figure out the right style of productivity advice for us.

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Writer Goals: Quitting the “Evil” Day Job

September 20, 2016 Writing Stuff
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Many new writers define “being a writer” as writing full-time, as though having day job equals an admission of failure or demonstrates a lack of professionalism. However, most writers do have day jobs, and that’s not necessarily a bad thing.

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Balancing Elements: How Can We Know the Right Amount?

September 15, 2016 Writing Stuff
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I’ve offered several posts here about balancing various elements of our story, but there’s still room for debate because we have to find the right balance for our voice, genre, tone, and style—for our story. That means there is no perfect amount of backstory or description or emotion.

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Backstory: When Is It Necessary?

September 13, 2016 Writing Stuff
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We often think about the purpose of backstory in terms of “what do readers need to know?” But with that perspective, it’s too easy to include too much backstory. Instead, we might be better off if we think about backstory from the perspective of what the story needs.

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Backstory: Finding the Right Balance — Guest: Janice Hardy

September 8, 2016 Writing Stuff
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Today, Janice Hardy shares her revision advice on how to include the right amount of backstory. Too much slows the pace, and too little can leave readers confused. Her tips help us avoid the issue of slow pacing, learn how to hide backstory, and identify when we need more.

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Pros & Cons: Referencing the Real World in Our Story

September 6, 2016 Writing Stuff
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Should we refer to the real world in our fictional story? Let’s take a look at the pros and cons and why we might want to include those references, as well as why we might not.

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Self Publishing? What’s Your Newsletter Plan? — Part Two

September 1, 2016 Writing Stuff
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Newsletters are an important tool for holding onto our readers from book to book, but how do we want to grow our list? Do we want to go for quantity or quality? Let’s explore the pros and cons of those two philosophies.

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4 Ways to Add Depth to Our Stories — Guest: Kassandra Lamb

August 30, 2016 Writing Stuff
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What makes a story *not* frivolous? If it’s gritty and dark? Has emotional depth? Or does it need to be “serious literature”? Can a story be light and yet weighty at the same time? Today, Kassandra Lamb shares her insights on how we can add meaning to our stories.

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Is Fear Hurting Your Writing Dream? — Guest: Jenny Hansen

August 25, 2016 Writing Stuff
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While I’m still slowly recovering from my latest surgery, Jenny Hansen is here to fill in for me. Most of us suffer from self-doubt, and today Jenny’s sharing her insights about hanging on to our writing dream through all the doubts and fears.

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