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Discovering Our Writing Processes

December 10, 2015 Writing Stuff
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We’ve probably all seen us vs. them attitudes for many aspects of writing, implying that there’s only one right process. However, just because something works for one person doesn’t mean it will work for everyone, and in the end, there’s only one thing that matters.

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Story Research: Law, Lawyers, and the Justice System — Guest: Karen A. Wyle

November 12, 2015 Writing Stuff
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As writers, we get to research anything we want. The problem comes when we think we know something, so we make assumptions without doing the research. Many of us assume we know the justice system because of the endless TV shows and movies depicting lawyers and courtrooms, but those sources don’t always get it right.

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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 Tools: Killer Resources for Drafting Our Story — Guest: Angela Ackerman

October 13, 2015 Writing Stuff
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I started visiting the original The Bookshelf Muse website by Angela Ackerman and Becca Puglisi soon after they started it, and it’s been fantastic to see their vision grow. So I’m thrilled to welcome Angela here today, as she’s going to share writing-related goodies with us.

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Writer’s Block? Use a Random Generator

June 10, 2014 Writing Stuff
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I’ll probably jinx myself by saying this, but I have more than enough story ideas to keep me busy writing for the rest of my natural life and I haven’t yet suffered from writer’s block. But I know others do struggle and come up blank. My “seat of my pants” writing style means that I rely on […]

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What Drives You to Write?

May 22, 2014 Writing Stuff
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Writing can be a difficult career. Writers can be lonely, plagued by self-doubt, faced with rejections that feel personal and judgmental, and expected to be good at everything (creative and a sales/marketing person!). Yet we do it anyway. We must have our reasons…beyond sheer insanity, I mean.

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How to Organize Our Writing Research & Notes — Guest: Jenny Hansen

March 27, 2014 Writing Stuff
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Today’s post continues the “secret weapon” theme from Tuesday’s post, but this time we’re going to talk about issues related to our writing. And this time, the secret weapon is Microsoft’s OneNote. Researching character or location pictures? Use OneNote. Want to capture the most useful tips on a blog post? Use OneNote. Want to remember […]

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Stuck in Your Book? Try a Brainstorming Warm-up

June 25, 2013 Writing Stuff
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I mentioned a couple of weeks ago that I’ve started drafting a new story. The first week, my word counts were rather lame, but this past week has been going much better. Each day finds me getting into my writing groove more easily. I joked to my family that I’d apparently needed to get my […]

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Does Drafting Terrify or Energize You?

June 11, 2013 Writing Stuff
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Last week I started a new work-in-progress (WIP). Yay! I love drafting but I know others don’t. Some people call the first draft a “discovery draft,” and that description certainly holds true for me. My first drafts are all about discovering the story. Literally. I’m a reformed plotter and now write mostly by the seat […]

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Three Tips for Better Storytelling

May 2, 2013 Writing Stuff
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Last time, we talked about how good storytelling can salvage even a poorly written book. As I mentioned in that post, storytelling skill is different from writing skill. Many people have a hard time defining what makes good storytelling—and that makes it difficult for us to improve. Yet I’d argue that storytelling ability isn’t as […]

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