writing advice

Vincent Morrone’s Writing Advice on Voice (and giveaway)

Vincent Morrone’s Writing Advice on Voice (and giveaway)

I'm excited to help announce Vincent Morrone's book release of VISION OF SHADOWS. To help Vincent celebrate, I asked him for his general thoughts on writing.  Here's what he said about a character's voice: "One of the most important things when you’re writing a novel is the voice of your characters. It’s not about how impressive your prose is, or how great a plot twist there is at the end. It’s the characters that draw us in. So how do you make sure your characters have a distinctive and charismatic voice? Listen to it. Don’t just read the words, but form the pictures in your mind...

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Writing Advice from Helen Fielding (Author of Bridget Jones)

I had so much fun going to see Helen Fielding speak in Washington DC a few weeks ago with my friends Erin and Julie.  Helen Fielding is the author of Bridget Jones Diary, and the latest Bridget Jones book, MAD ABOUT THE BOY.  After many years, Helen decided to reveal the next installment of Bridget's life. Things were so crazy at that time with my own book, I didn't get to write a post about the event and Helen's writing advice until now. But now that the cover reveal for ELECTED is over, I had a moment. (just 3 more days for the contest to win a free advanced copy of ELECTED!)  http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/fc0c920/. First...

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Writing Every Day

Why do writers like Stephen King say a best practice is to "write every day"? I think I know...  My family and I were sick last week, and between taking care of the kids and feeling ill myself, not much writing was accomplished.  So when I sat down with my latest manuscript this week, I had to reread whole sections and get back into the swing of things.  Even after just a week of not writing I felt rusty. But then as soon as I had spent a day in front of the computer, the words were flowing again.  In fact, they were flowing so fast that I woke up multiple times in the middle of the night...

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Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators California Conference (August 2012)

I went to my first national SCBWI conference and had such a good experience. Here's a breakdown of 10 things I learned at the conference (in no particular order): 1.  Do a critique:  so many of the published authors I met said they got their break from meeting an agent or publisher at a previous SCBWI conference.  It was usually after a critique session and the editor would say, "hmm...I liked this...send me the whole manuscript after the conference."  So next time I go to a conference, I'll be sure to sign up for the critique.  You never know. 2.  Pay attention to who is around...

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How I Balance My Life While Writing Novels

Haha!  I am already laughing at myself as I attempt to write this post. A lot of people have asked me how I balance having a family, a young infant, a consulting career, volunteering, socializing, and writing novels all at the same time.  Balance is definitely the key word because it is truly a balancing act.  Obviously my family and child come first, no matter what.  But I am also super-focused when I write.  It's like I'm in another world where not much else breaks through.  So how do I fit it in?  I work in short little stints, whenever I can get in a few minutes...after my child goes...

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Writing advice from Jodi Picoult

About a year ago, I saw Jodi Picoult speak about her book, SING YOU HOME, in Washington DC.  When she opened the floor for questions, I asked her for advice aimed at new writers.  Below is the gist of what she told me.  I found it inspiring, and I hope it is useful to you as well. She said that after she wrote her first novel and tried to get it published, she was rejected many times.  Instead of giving up and not bothering to write again, she put down that novel and wrote a second one.  And then a third...and so on.  She said it was one of her subsequent books that eventually got her in the door...

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© 2012 through the United States Library of Congress.