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Showing posts from January, 2016

5 Tips to Pacing Your Novel

I am always getting asked about how to keep the action going in a book so that the reader doesn't get bored, but no one wants to keep going full bore. Sooner or later every writer wants to slow things down, even just a little to give the reader a chance to take a breath.

Now that doesn't mean you want to let your book become boring. But you do want to check over your pacing to see that the story is still flowing even through the ups and downs.

Here are five tips that might help you make certain your book doesn't go too fast or too slow.

1. Start the story quickly.  That's a given. Just like you're heading off to work and running late, you want to get off to a quick start.  Introduce your characters and setting and set up the plot issue quickly or your readers are going to stop reading after the first chapter.

2. Introduce your characters and put them into action.  Make them do something. Give them a problem or two right away. But make them real so that your reader…

5 Tips for Promoting Your Book

If there is one  thing, writers hate to do, it is promote themselves.  No matter how good a salesperson we might be for others and their books, we don't like to do it for ourselves.  But as I've been told over and over, it's a necessary thing.  In these days of easily available social media it should be much easier. But still we don't like subjecting our friends over and over to a sales pitch on Facebook.

But that doesn't mean you can't try other methods of selling yourself on social media. We've all been told about most of these, but they remain valuable. Here are reminders of five different ways to get yourself out there on social media.

1. Write a Blog.  Yes, I'm sure you've been told that before. The question is what do you write in a blog? Well, you can always post blogs about how your story is coming along or pose a question to readers to engage them.  Use  your research and post a picture of a location you're working on. Offer a prize fo…

5 Tips for Getting Started on a New Novel

This is the time of year when we all decide we're going to start doing those things we keep talking about doing. That includes writing that book we always wanted to write.  In previous blogs I've covered how to start plotting your novel using the 5 W's. Look below for that.

But how do you get yourself going and doing the writing that counts.  The only thing I can say to that is that if you're a writer, you write.  Period!  As I just told a class I am teaching this month, I've heard the prolific Nora Roberts say (when asked how she could write so many books) "It's my job. You don't call in sick or say you'll work tomorrow in your day job. If you want to be a writer, you write."

And she is so right. When I was working in a newsroom I always knew I would be writing that day. It was how I was making my living. I was expected to turn out the stories I was assigned, or produce the newscast and that meant writing even when I didn't feel like it.

5 Tips for Starting off a New Writing Year

Okay, we're a few days into the new year, but this is Monday, and the beginning of a new work week. I have a number of writing classes that actually start today because it is Monday.  One of them is on Power Writing -- offered by Outreach International Romance Writers. In this class we go from ways to come up with stories to actually writing them and then to looking at ways to get them published.

But that got me to thinking about five ways to get started in this new writing year if you've already started something.  How can you re-dedicate yourself to your writing commitment. We're not talking resolutions here, but how to make those resolutions work for you.

So with a toast to the new year, here are five tips for getting going again, now that we're in a new year:

1.  Just do it!  One of my mottos for this year is that Nike slogan.  I've been wanting to start a new project and waiting for the inspiration to strike -- well, sometimes that inspiration is never coming.…