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What Makes a Story’s Black Moment a Black Moment?

December 16, 2014 Writing Stuff
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The Black Moment is usually one of the most emotional sections of the story, so it can be difficult to pull together. If we read stories (or watch movies), we’ve seen this beat play out endless times, so we probably understand the plot point more than we may think. But let’s take a closer look and see if we can learn something new.

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Are Multimedia Books a “Game Changer”?

December 4, 2014 Writing Stuff
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In any profession, we have to stay on top of industry changes, and publishing is no different. Recent stories have stated multimedia ebooks are the future of fiction, so it’s in our best interest to learn whether storytelling will evolve into multimedia ebooks as the primary medium.

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Should Authors on the Traditional Path Pay an Editor? — Guest: Sharon Hughson

November 20, 2014 Writing Stuff
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Writers pursuing traditional publishing are often told not to pay for editing before submitting to agents or publishers. But the landscape has changed and we’ve had to change our opinion and attitude about many old-school advice “rules.” Should this advice should be next on the chopping block?

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Diversity in Writing: Researching Characters — Guest: Melinda Primrose

November 13, 2014 Writing Stuff
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We often write about settings or jobs or situations we haven’t experienced, and diversity among our characters should be no different. Today’s guest post is about how we can research and learn more about experiences for which we don’t have first-hand knowledge and avoid the fear of “getting it wrong.”

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The Pros and Cons of Switching Genres — Guest: Summerita Rhayne

November 6, 2014 Writing Stuff
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We often choose which story to focus on by writing the idea that pesters us the most. That “squeaky wheel” path might lead us to hop genres without meaning to, and our brand is often tied to our genre. So should we ignore that idea? Learn some of the pros and cons we should keep in mind if we consider following our muse’s lead.

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Do You Have a “Must Read” List of Blogs?

November 4, 2014 Random Musings
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As writers, most of us are insanely busy. *raises hand* And it can be difficult to find time to dedicate to writing. So I’m picky about the number and quality of blogs on my “must read” list. They have to earn their spot—and keep earning their spot. So why would I turn over control of my blog to others for most of a month?

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7 Tips for Staying Safe on Twitter — Guest: Marcy Kennedy

October 30, 2014 Random Musings
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Today Marcy Kennedy shares tips to stay safe on Twitter, but many of these tips will apply to staying safe online—period. Not just for Twitter. And read on for my bonus tips of how we can implement her ideas across our online life.

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Cause and Effect: Understanding Story Flow

October 9, 2014 Writing Stuff
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In the real world, the cause of something happens before the effect. But in writing, we can put words into any order we want, which might leave the reader confused. If they have to reverse events in their head, they’re probably no longer immersed in our story. Not good.

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Banned Books? Or Freedom to Write and Read?

September 23, 2014 Random Musings
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This week is Banned Books Week, an annual event sponsored by the American Library Association celebrating the freedom to read. Many have already blogged about the political aspects of this event, so I’m tackling this issue from a less serious perspective. Sort of. *smile*

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First Pages: Tips to Avoid Cliches and Weak Writing

September 18, 2014 Writing Stuff
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Many stories “strike out” with readers in the first chapter. So our opening pages are just as critical to sales as our book cover, title, back-cover blurb, etc. Let’s take a closer look at cliches to avoid and tips to make those pages work for us.

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