sacrifices

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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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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Frustrated with Slow Progress? Join the Crowd

October 7, 2014 Over-Achieving Perfectionist
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We’ve probably all been frustrated with slow progress at some point in our writing career. Maybe we’re frustrated with the slow increase of our word count. Maybe we’re frustrated with an apparent lack of improvement in our writing. Or maybe we’re frustrated with our sales numbers. The point is that frustration happens to all of […]

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Lessons from RWA14: Techniques for Sales Success

August 5, 2014 Writing Stuff
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This past weekend, author Hugh Howey shared Liliana Hart’s self-publishing method, which she calls “5 down and 1 in the hole.” It’s easy to look at her self-publishing success (over 2 million ebooks sold) and chalk it up to luck. However, I heard advice that complemented her technique throughout the RWA Annual Conference.

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The Value of “Crap” Jobs

May 29, 2014 Writing Stuff
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Endless advice exists telling us “life is a journey; enjoy the ride” and “happiness comes from within.” On some level, we’ve probably heard that advice so much that we dismiss what it really means.
But that advice is true and valid. Life is what we make of it.

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Is “Do What You Love” Good Advice?

May 27, 2014 Random Musings
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Life is filled with work that needs to be done whether someone loves to do it or not. I’ll be the first to admit that I write because I love it. But the problem with thinking that we should do what we love and love what we do—as a career—is many layered.

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How to Make a Forbidden Romance Work

May 1, 2014 Writing Stuff
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Today’s “Ask Jami” came from a comment on my Romance Beat Sheet post. Nick wanted to know how a story’s structure would change if the romance is forbidden. Ooo…

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Finding Balance: Play Hooky

March 13, 2014 Random Musings
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When we were school-age, many of us recognized the need to blow off classes and responsibilities once in a while to play hooky. The exhilaration of “getting away with something” can recharge our burned-out batteries just as much as the trip to the shopping mall or whatever we did with our goof-off time. But as […]

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Are You Living Your Dream?

March 6, 2014 Random Musings
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If we’re living our passions, life is pretty darn good, especially compared to the alternative. And if we’re not living our passions, that might be because we don’t even know what they are.

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The Best Reason to Blog – Part 4

November 28, 2013 Random Musings
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Today is Thanksgiving in the U.S. The day we eat too much food, roll our eyes at the antics of our extended family, and think about all the things we’re grateful for. Or in my case, see if I can resist seconds of mashed potatoes so I can justify another dessert. This Thanksgiving post is […]

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