Using Pressure To One’s Advantage As a Writer

Since I’ve been fairly immersed in pressure this week, I focused on finding more ways to channel it. Here’s what I came up with. Financial Pressure – Rar! I had some writing and publishing expenses beyond my usual monthly investment. Unusual outlays of cash have always created dissonance for me as an artist, because I […]

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Increasing Writerly Decisiveness

So much of the time, we wring our hands that we don’t know what to do about our problems, writing problems included. But fascinatingly, we do know what to do in many cases. We just don’t like the answers! I’m sometimes guilty of this. Maybe my options are not tidy or clear-cut, which makes me […]

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Adventures in Extreme Novel Outlining

I began writing fiction as an interior decorator of rooms that were ill-designed. “Prose is architecture, not interior decoration.” – Ernest Hemingway Specifically, my early stories feature quirks and atmosphere but lack something in orchestration and plot. In other words, I began this adventure as a die-hard pantser who resisted outlining and structuring. Over the past […]

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5 Words I Made Up to Describe NaNoWriMo

The National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) challenge is a many-faceted thing. To describe the experience, I found myself needing to mash up some fresh word concotions. Technically every month is NaNoWriMo for me. I do between 15,000 and 20,000 words per week of fiction writing. Sure, that’s all pure, gunky draft but it’s out there! […]

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Google Apps is a Free Software Option with Add-ons for Writers

Writers are typically looking for ways to reduce costs. Here’s one such way. A popular alternative to Microsoft Office is Google Apps, a free online suite which includes a word processor (Google Docs), a spreadsheet program (Google Sheets), a presentation program (Google Slides), and more. While Google Apps can be used offline and synced back […]

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Writing Morally Complex Characters

I’ve found that writing morally complex characters boils down to simultaneously setting them up to fail and succeed. At some juncture in the story, even a “good” character should seem just as likely to make the wrong choice as the right one! Strong characters are described in layers so that by the time they reach […]

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My Top 10 Songs About Writing – #ToWriteTo

My iPod includes several songs which are either directly or indirectly about writing. For whatever reason, they inspire me to keep going with my writing projects. Here’s my list, in hopes that you’ll add yours in the comments. I need some new tunes! 1. Open Book by Cake – While I realize this is a song […]

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On Not Being Too Tied to Desired Outcomes

We can’t be too tied to desired outcomes. As writers, we of all people should understand the need for plot twists. Here’s an awesome reminder that the adventure’s probably the better thing to savor! Even though we would not turn down the whole getting what want thing… “I saw the world. I learnt of new cultures. […]

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