This Week in Favs…..

Playing on the Zune:  Blow Me Away by Breaking Benjamin

Social Media and Author Websites

“6 Reasons Authors Should Love Timeline” by Marcy Kennedy & Lisa Hall-Wilson on Girls with Pens <—Some seriously good advice on how to utilize the new ‘Timeline’ feature on Facebook! A Must Read!

“The 10-Minute Technique to Becoming a More Productive Writer” by Georgina Laidlaw on Copyblogger <—Tips and thoughts on how to become more productive. “Pinterest: 13 Things Writers Should Know” by Rachelle Gardner <—If you haven’t checked out Pinterest yet, then this may entice you to give it a try. “Ten Tips for Authors Using Pinterest” by Rachelle Gardner on Books & Such Literacy Agency blog <—Additional tips on how to make Pinterst work for the writer. “The WRITERS WORTH Site is ALIVE!” by Lyn Midnight <—Fun new blog for writers – Writers Worth – go check it out!

“21 Warning Signs You’re Becoming a Social Media Snob” by Jonathan Morrow on Copyblogger <—Ugh… nobody likes a snob! Here’s how to spot the warning signs.

On the Craft

“Creating a Memorable Character (Part 1 of 3)” and “Creating a Memorable Character (Part 2 of 3)” and “Building a Memorable Character (Part 3 of 3) by Anna Solivers on If You Wish to Be a Writer, Write <—Awesome tips on making those lovable characters of yours memorable for the reader. Must Reads!

“What Makes You Keep Reading?” by Ava Jae by Writability <—This is what happens when you read John Green’s The Fault In Our Stars: An amazing post on how to keep your readers glued to the page emerges!

“Ten Crazy Ways to Improve Your Writing” by Jeff Bennington on The Writing Bomb <—Interesting take on how to improve your prose! “Flip the Script: Tell, Don’t Show” by Jael McHenry on Writer Unboxed <—Oh, now that’s a bit new. Changing your view and learning the exceptions to the ‘showing’ rule. “Writing Exercised for Writer’s Block” by Tabitha Olson on Writer Musings <—Great exercises to do when you’re feeling blocked! “Plots and Hooks, Think Symphony” by Catherine Stine on Seeing Creative <—A great breakdown on plotting and how hooks are ‘musically mood-oriented.’

“9 Tips for Writing Comedy” by Lynda R. Young on W.I.P. It: A Writer’s Journey <—A list of tips learned from Oliver Phommavanh at an author’s festival. Thanks for sharing Lynda! “The Secrets of Story Structure, Pt. 2: The Hook” by K.M. Weiland on Workplay <—Awesome follow up to “The Secrets of Story Structure, Pt. 1: Why Should Authors Care?”

“Chapter One: 11/22/63 by Stephen King” by Mooderino on Moody Writing <—A look at the first chapter in Stephen King’s latest work and how it worked at capturing the reader’s attention. “What Makes a Character Unique?” by Jami Gold <—In a world with fan fiction, what constitutes the creation of an original character vs. taking a well-known character and only changing their name and occupation. “And the Pace is On: Understanding and Controlling Pace” by Janice Hardy <—How to maintain one of the most important things that keeps a reader – well, reading. “3 Simple Storytelling Methods that Can Do Your Selling For You” by Ben Settle on Copyblogger <—The main types of plots that truly do the selling for the author.  “Time Management for Writers” by Merry Farmer <—How to build in some writing time each and every day (yes, this means you must sacrifice something, but it’s worth it!). “3 Ways to Find the Perfect Opening for Your Story” by Jody Hedlund <—3 tips for gripping your readers within those first few precious pages. “Reader to Writer: Hey Dude, Clear it Up!” by Bill Polm on Write to Done <—Ensuring that you’re making your writing crystal clear for the reader. “Twelve Writer Woes and the Books to Cure Them” by Roni Loren <—Hehe… I’m so glad I’m not the only writing book whore out there! ;0) “Your Character’s Language” by Jane Lebak on <—The important of learning how to speak like your character. “Three Things You Must Have in Your Novel’s First Paragraph” by C.S. Lakin on Live Write Thrive <—Three specific needs you must have in that crucial opening paragraph. “25 Things You Should Know About Word Choice” by Chuck Wendig on Terribleminds <—Ah, yes… word choice is SUPER important, writers! Another great ‘spot-on’ post from Chuck!  A Must Read!

“Making an Em Dash for it: How Do You Actually Use Them?” by Janice Hardy <—An explanation and examples of how you should be using the em dash.

“Entertainment vs. Truth” by Donald Maass on Writer Unboxed <—Which are you, an entertainer or a truth-teller? “The Most Underestimated Key to Success from The Matrix” by Marcy Kennedy <—Incredible post on how to get around a mental block.

Writerly Inspiration

“Failure – The Key Ingredient to the Successful Writing Career” by Kristen Lamb <—I love this post! “If we aren’t failing, then aren’t doing anything interesting.” –Kristen Lamb  :0) A Must-Read!

“The Unexpected Way I Found to Increase My Productivity” by Michelle Davidson Argyle on The Innocent Flower <—A list of tasks you should do everyday for 3 weeks…and your productivity will increase because you’ll be happier. :0)

“25 Inspiration Sources for the Discouraged Writer” by Cheryl Reif <—Need a dose of inspiration? Go to one of these find it. “You Don’t Have to Be a Star” by James Scott Bell on The Kill Zone <—Have I mentioned lately how much I enjoy reading Mr. Bell’s stories? Each and every one is simply inspiring, and I never fail to learn something new.  A Must-Read!

“Unchangeable Things” by Zeke Pipher on Rachelle Gardner’s blog <—Remembering that it’s the things in like that are ‘unchangeable’ you should be counting on, regardless of what happens in this writing life. “How to Write Like You Can’t Fail” by Lynda R. Young <—Awesome post with the tips we all know and love (though with a fresh outlook). “Nine Writing Milestones to Celebrate (and Aim For)” by Ali Luke on Aliventures <—No matter how small or large the accomplishment, you should definitely take the time to celebrate, especially these particular milestones.

On Editing, Critiquing, Querying, Publishing and more…

“The Best Advice for Your Urban Fantasy You’ll Ever Read” by Mark Landen <—If you take the fantasy and paranormal out of your story, would it still work? Great read on how fantastical elements should really bring sparkle to the story, not be the entire base of it. “Query Letters: Constants and Not So Constants” by Mary Lindsey on <—Awesome tips on writing that query letter – there are a few things in here that used to be considered a big fat NO…but maybe not so much anymore. “What an Editor Wants In An Author” guest post by Susan Litman, Senior Editor, Harlequin Special Edition, on Babbles from Scott Eagan’s <—What they want from us! A Must-Read!

“Mixing Magics” by Cathy Clamp, guest post on Janice Hardy’s blog <—How to blend multiple fantastical elements into your novel without one stepping on the others’ toes. “7 Tips for Self- Editing Your Novel” by Melissa K. Norris on Wordserve Water Cooler <—Breakin’ it down so you don’t feel so overwhelmed during the editing phase. “How to Think Like an Editor” by Jeanne Kisacky on Writer Unboxed <—Love these insights! A Must-Read!

“A Little Humor” by Lisa Gail Green on Paranormal Point of View <—3 funny videos on self-pubbing that’ll make you giggle so hard you just might get the you’re-so-insane look from your family. *smile* “When Does Fan Fiction Cross an Ethical Line?” by Jami Gold <—Great post this week from Jami Gold that begs the question: Is it ethical to publish and profit from fan fiction? Great discussion an debate going on in the comments! A Must Read!

“Unconventional Guide to Publishing (AKA: How to Know More Than 99% of Humanity About Publishing)” by Matt Gartland <—A study of David Fugate’s The Unconventional Guide to Publishing.

“Why Should Writers Care About Indie Bookstores?” by Therese Walsh on Writer Unboxed <—A look at what an author gets out of a relationship with an indie bookstore. “My Decision to Self Publish” by Laura Pauling <—One writer’s journey into making the decision to self publish. “Queries from an Agency’s POV” and “What Makes a Good Fiction Query” by Michelle Ule on Books & Such Literary Agency blog <—Parts 1 and 2 of a 3-piece series on queries from Books & Such. Great tips for every writer within these two posts! “On Publishing: 6 Aspects of Writing YA that Surprised Me” by Carrie Ryan on Magical Words <—6 important lessons from the publishing world from a YA author. “Is There a Self-Publishing Bubble?” by Nathan Bransford <—In other words, get used to the increase in self-publishing, it’s going to be around for a while. “Ergonomics for Writerly Folk” by Therese Walsh on Writer Unboxed <—Seriously, it is VERY important that pay attention to ergonomics, especially since we each sit in front of the computer screen for hours at a time. A Must Read!

This week on the blog:

Happy Reading and Writing, everyone!!!


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