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What’s in a Name?

Shadowy figure in a hallway

When we first get an idea for a story, the characters who will populate that story often start out shadowy and vague.  Either before the writing process (if we’re plotters) or during the writing process (if we’re pantsers), we have to develop those characters into something solid and colorful.  We have to make them real […]

May 3, 2011

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Do You Have a Muse?

Time lapse photography of star trails and fireflies

All writers get their ideas from somewhere.  The question is—where, or what, is that somewhere? I don’t believe muses are entities like those venerated in Ancient Greece.  However, when my subconscious comes up with things I never saw coming and never could have consciously created in a million years, it’s easy for me to understand […]

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April 28, 2011

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Do Writers Have to Be Able to Lie?

Book of secrets under chains and lock

Most of you have never met me in person, so I need to start off by explaining that I’m a very expressive person.  All those smiley faces in my tweets and blog comments?  Completely true-to-life. You’ll never see me take a bet to try to keep a straight face for more than five seconds.  I […]

April 26, 2011

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“What’s Your Book About?”

Forked road

Do you dread that question?  If you tell the cashier at the grocery store you’re a writer and they ask what your book is about, do you have an answer? All writers who want readers have to be able to answer that question.  Whether it’s our brother-in-law at a holiday dinner or an agent at […]

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April 21, 2011

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Learning and Blogging and Writing—Oh My!

Balancing rock piles

Fantasy: To become an author, we just need to have a great idea, write it down, and then agents, publishers, and readers will all magically appear. Reality: Nothing like that. Becoming an author isn’t simple.  Oh no.  We have what seems like a never-ending list of things to learn and do if we want to […]

April 19, 2011

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Are You a Learning Addict?

Classroom

Old-fashioned school desks squeak, their occupants leaning for a better view.  Dust motes hang suspended in the sunbeams from the classroom windows, as though they stilled, waiting for the confession.  I stand before the group and gather my courage. “My name is Jami Gold and I am a learning addict.” As my posts about learning […]

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April 14, 2011

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When Shouldn’t You Self Publish?

Painted stop on road

Many articles have been written about traditional vs. self publishing (this blog is no exception, as my articles here and here prove), and agent Rachelle Gardner’s recent post added an intriguing twist to the conversation.  She asked her readers who are sticking with traditional publishing to explain their reasons why. Good question.  And I don’t […]

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April 12, 2011

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How Much More Do You Have to Learn?

Penrose never-ending stairs optical illusion from the movie Inception

In my last post, I lamented how it’s hard for us to see our learning curve and know how much more we have yet to understand.  I wanted to know how close I was to that elusive “destination” of knowing everything I need to know about writing. *pshaw*  Silly me for thinking such a destination actually […]

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April 7, 2011

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Can Karma Help You Become a Better Writer?

Arrows in a circle

Yesterday, author Jody Hedlund had a blog post about why most writers are blind to their own faults.  The first reason she mentioned really resonated with me: We naturally view our work through our maturity level. When we first start any new project, writing or otherwise, we don’t know what all we don’t know.  This […]

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April 5, 2011

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Would You Ever Turn Down a Contract?

Thumbs down

The comments for my last post were fantastic—thank you!  The range of opinions really got me to think deeper about the traditional vs. self publishing issue. Many people wrote in with circumstances for when self publishing works (and possibly works “better”).  Others noted situations where traditional publishing is the only way to go, one being […]

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March 31, 2011

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