Like many of you, I’ve been wrestling with an over-abundance of information, misinformation, opinions, and group-think messages. Everywhere we turn, we are seeing and hearing, mostly from one side, interpretations and narratives we must sort through and examine. We are being forced to rethink our values, our belief systems, our capacity to love, and our willingness to conform to ideals that we probably know little about. In the last few months I have been searching for knowledge, answers, and above all…truth. I realize not everyone will share my viewpoint. This post will be about my conclusions and may step on toes. But our toes must be already pretty sore these days. If you want to hear more…keep reading. In my quest I first had to decide what I would choose as my source of … [Read more...] about What Kind of Love?
How many drafts do you need?
Drafting your book from start to finish. Writing a novel? Thinking of writing a novel? Don’t know what a draft is or how many drafts you need to write before publishing? There are many different methods to writing a book, fiction or nonfiction. I have been coached by some of the best fiction authors around, taken countless extended classes, and researched extensively on how it all should be done. I have considered all methods and come up with a system that works for me, which includes the basic fiction writing necessities as well as bits and pieces of methods that suit me. I stay pretty much within the traditional guidelines for writing, without too much detailed plotting. I still strive to improve my craft, always room for improvement. But to learn, you must write. Let’s … [Read more...] about How many drafts do you need?
Isn’t fun fun? It should be!
"Isn't fun fun?" My friend said this to me as I was teaching a group of ladies how to make an Easter wreath made out of torn scraps of fabric. Everyone nodded in agreement, and it got me thinking about fun. When we were kids fun was really fun. The joy of building a sand castle, the thrill of riding a bike down a hill, or the wonder of exploring an amusement park reached us to the core. It just seemed easier to enjoy life as a child. Maybe because of lack of responsibilities or innocence, or insatiable curiosity. I had to admit to myself that I don't enjoy "fun" as much as I used to. I can only guess as to why that is. I suppose there are different reasons for everyone. But we all bring our negative baggage into most everything we do, and I think it interferes with our ability to … [Read more...] about Isn’t fun fun? It should be!
5 “Mores” to Great Fiction Writing
There's always more to learn about writing great fiction. All novelists want to end up with a book that will move our readers. It's a constant search for that one thing that will make folks love your stories. Even seemingly small things can make a big difference in the final draft of your novel. And some things you might not think will have an impact on your writing are often what you should explore. Here are 5 things you may need more of to put the most into your fiction. More preparation It doesn’t matter whether you are a plotter or a pantser, you still must do some preparation for your novel. This applies to any genre. Of course, historical projects will take a greater amount of your prep time in research, interviews, etc. But there are more ways to prep for your … [Read more...] about 5 “Mores” to Great Fiction Writing
Interview with author Janet Bly
Welcome Janet! "Beneath a Camperdown Elm" is the latest release of award-winning Janet Chester Bly. Janet has been bringing us great western stories for many years, and she loves sharing her own story as she speaks to groups around the region. I'm honored to have Janet be my guest here today, and you are blessed to have the chance to win a copy of "Beneath a Camperdown Elm." Leave a comment and the winner will be contacted on or around the 24th of February. Here is my interview with Janet: 1. How does writing stories tie in with legacy for you? Books can travel to places I may never go—an unexpected bonus of writing and publishing. What a privilege to hear of books authored by me … [Read more...] about Interview with author Janet Bly