Guest Editor Again for Today’s Critiques 4 U Contest at Writers Helping Writers

Writers Helping Writers

It’s happening again: Angela and Becca of Writers Helping Writers have invited me back as the guest editor for their Critiques 4 U contest! (*happy dance time*)

In case you’re not familiar with it, Critiques 4 U is Writers Helping Writers’ monthly contest in which three writers are selected to have their story’s first page critiqued by Becca or a guest editor. It’s a fantastic way to get free feedback on one of the most important pages in your manuscript from a resource you trust, and I’m THRILLED to be back again for the November edition.

Continue reading

Looking for Feedback on Your Story’s First Page? Check Out Today’s Critiques 4 U Contest at Writers Helping Writers!

Writers Helping Writers

OMG, I’m so excited, everyone! Helping out Angela and Becca at Writers Helping Writers for their Critiques 4 U contest back in March went really well. So guess what? They asked me to come back for this month’s contest! 🙂

If you’re working on a story or manuscript, or if you didn’t get a chance to enter the March contest, continue reading to learn how you can enter this month.

Continue reading

New at Writers Helping Writers: This Month’s Guest for Critiques 4 U + Guest Post on Writing Flashbacks

Writers Helping Writers

Yes, I’m posting on Tuesday instead of Wednesday this week! Why? Because something AWESOME is happening at Writers Helping Writers today, and I don’t want you to miss out on it.

Today, Writers Helping Writers (run by Angela Ackerman and Becca Puglisi, authors of The Emotion Thesaurus and other best-selling resources for writers) is running its monthly Critiques 4 U contest. The rules are simple: Comment on this morning’s blog post within 24 hours of it going live, and you’ll be entered for the chance to be one of three (3) writers to receive feedback on the first page of your manuscript.

Usually Becca critiques the three winners’ first pages. However, she and Angela have invited a special guest editor for this month’s contest: yours truly! 😀  So if you’re working on a story or manuscript right now, keep reading after the jump for more details.

Continue reading

The 2017 Blogoversary, Part 2: The Writerly Wisdom Giveaways

Last week was the launch of this year’s 8th blogoversary “party,” with a giveaway featuring ten unique fiction books I highly recommend. (Sunday, July 9th was the actual blogoversary.) Today, it’s time for conclude the celebration… with two more giveaways! And since both prizes are writing-related, I’m calling them the Writerly Wisdom giveaways, after my semi-weekly Writer Wisdom quote series.

So which books are options for the first giveaway? (Hint: Check out the banner image above.) What did I find so enriching or inspiring about each one? And, what is the mysterious second giveaway? Read on to find out!
Continue reading

Rock The Vault: Celebrating the Urban and Rural Setting Thesaurus Duo (A Guest Post by Angela Ackerman of Writers Helping Writers)

Rock the Vault banner

Oh, am I excited for our latest guest! Angela Ackerman is one half of the duo at Writers Helping Writers (her co-blogger is the equally awesome Becca Puglisi). And not only do they run one of my favorite websites dedicated to the craft of writing, but they’re also the authors of the best-selling Thesaurus collection – all of which have become instrumental parts of my writing process. Today, these ladies are releasing two new additions to their collection, and I couldn’t be happier to have Angela tell you more about them. Read on!

As we storytellers sit before the keyboard to craft our magic, we’re usually laser-focused on the two titans of fiction: plot and character. Yet, there’s a third element that impacts almost every aspect of the tale, one we really need to home in on as well: the setting.

The setting is so much more than a painted backdrop, more than a stage for our characters to tromp across during the scene. Used to its full advantage, the setting can characterize the story’s cast, supply mood, steer the plot, provide challenges and conflict, trigger emotions, help us deliver those necessary snippets of backstory… and that’s just scratching the surface. So the question is this: how do we unleash the full power of the setting within our stories? Continue reading

5 on the 5th: Five Bookish Christmas Gift Ideas for Writers (+ The Creative Blogger Award)

5 on the 5th Banner 2

On the fifth day of each month, 5 on the 5th shares five of something that I like or recommend to readers. Whether it’s five items that share a common theme, or five reasons why I like the topic at hand, this monthly meme gives us an opportunity to talk about other subjects that aren’t normally discussed here at the blog. 

I still have some catching up to do in the Blog Awards Department. So, for this month’s 5 on the 5th, I’m combining it with *finally* accepting Elizabeth Rawls’ nomination for the Creative Blogger Award. Thank you again, E., and I’m sorry it’s taken so long for me to get to this!

creative-blogger-award

Here are the rules for the Creative Blogger Award:

  1. Thank the blogger who nominated you and post the link of said blog.
  2. Share five facts about yourself to your readers.
  3. Nominate 15 to 20 blogs and notify all nominees via their social media or blogs.

As you can probably tell from the title of this post, I’ve put a “creative” spin on accepting this award. 😉 Instead of five random facts, I’m recommending five books on the craft of writing. And with Christmas and other gift-giving holidays around the corner, there’s no better time to find new reference books for the writer in your life – or for yourself!

Btw, the following books are for all writers. I may do a separate 5 on the 5th in the future specifically on reference / craft books for speculative fiction writers.

Continue reading

Chronicling The Craft: 50,000 Words

Meet The Protagonist – A Character Profile

Chapters Completed: 12

Chapters In Progress: 8

Chapters Left to Start: 14

“Chronicling The Craft” is an article series where I share my experience with writing my current work-in-progress (WIP), which is a fantasy novel. Every 5,000 words, I let readers know what I’ve accomplished since the previous article and share advice, discoveries, techniques, etc. Besides the word count in each article title, a “chapter ticker” at the top also tracks my progress as I use the skip-around / “writercopter” method to write the novel. Today’s installment celebrates the book reaching 50,000 words in length.

First of all, YAY! I’ve been looking forward to reaching the 50,000-word milestone for some time – not only because of the purpose I’d planned for this particular article, but because this milestone means I’m roughly halfway finished with my WIP.  😀  So, this Chronicle feels like a true celebration.

Let’s get right to the progress points since my previous Chronicle: Continue reading

Field Trip: WANACon February 2014

WANAConFeb2014

In some ways, WANACon doesn’t count as a field trip in the true sense of the phrase. (Click here to read my “promo” article for WANACon.) It’s an online writing conference you can attend from the comforts of home, someone else’s house, a cafe – wherever you can bring your laptop and find a wifi connection. However, it meant two days of geeking out and investing time and money into learning more about the craft of writing, something I’m more than thrilled to do. I may have been at home and in front of my laptop for much of the time, but in my head I was seated in crowded classrooms and surrounded by other writers who shared my passion and excitement. I took flurries of notes, listened to each presenter with rapt attention, and almost immediately applied what I was learning to my work-in-progress (WIP). In other words, I was far, far away mentally – and I had a blast! Continue reading