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Branding 101: Keeping Our Sanity while Building a Brand

Girl falling off a slide with text: Branding? Hang on to Your Sanity

We can’t do it all, and as Jenny Hansen mentioned recently, that includes limiting our social media platforms. It’s so easy in this business to overdo things, and that includes our branding efforts. Let’s take a look at how to find (and keep) the right balance for the sake of our sanity.

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March 23, 2017

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Strengthening Stakes: It’s Not about Going Big

High tension electrical wire with large spark: Are Bigger Stakes Better?

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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September 27, 2016

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Plot Obstacles: Too Easy, Too Difficult, or Just Right?

Hurdle obstacle with text: The Right Obstacles for Our Story

Our characters have to overcome many problems throughout our plot, but changing the obstacles doesn’t always fix story problems. Sure, sometimes an obstacle doesn’t fit the story, but too often, the obstacle itself isn’t broken—but the storytelling around the obstacle.

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May 12, 2016

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Does Missing a Deadline Make Us Unprofessional?

Confident woman with text: Do We Have a Professional Reputation?

As writers, we face deadlines and commitments every time we turn around. So we’re likely to be familiar with the pressure of deadlines and the expectation of meeting our commitments. But what happens when we can’t meet them? How bad is it for us and our reputation?

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April 5, 2016

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Self-Care for Writers

Zen candles and stones with text: Relax... Self-Care for Writers

A writer’s life can quickly shift from leisure time to impossible deadlines, which can interfere with our healthy habits. To maintain our health, we should occasionally analyze our self-care habits and routines—especially when we have time between the chaos.

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March 8, 2016

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If We’re Serious about Writing, We’ll…

Stack of paper with text: What Do "Serious" Writers Need to Do?

Some sales pitches play on our fears, and others play on our self-doubt. These sales messages are usually worded like, “If We’re Serious about Writing, We’ll…” Unfortunately, messages like this aren’t limited to sales pitches.

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January 28, 2016

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The “Secret” to Success Can’t Be Bought

Wax seal on an envelope with text: Psst... Want to Buy the Secret to Success?

Unfortunately, some writers believe that paying for a workshop, class, or conference is necessary to succeed, and some sales pitches play to our fears by implying they can teach us the “secret” to success. But while these resources can help us as writers, they’re not required to succeed.

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January 26, 2016

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Writer Sanity: Recognizing Takers & Setting Boundaries

Old West "wanted" poster with text: Takers Who Don't Give Back

Last week, I challenged writers to think about how they’re giving back to the writing community because it needs our help to thrive. Yet no matter what I recommend, there will be takers infecting our community, so let’s learn how to recognize them for what they are.

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January 12, 2016

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Writer Karma: Don’t Be a Taker

Many hands reaching to grab with text: Are You Giving or Just Taking?

Everyone who knows me and follows my blog knows I love to help others. Most people who contact me are appreciative, and I really am happy to help. But there are a few… *sigh*

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January 5, 2016

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