Category Archives: About Us

Writing By Design: A New Way To Envision Storytelling

Part 1: The Significance of Space As writers, we often think of ourselves as “word people,” fully entrenched in the realm of language and all things verbal. Yet we have more in common with our artsy counterparts than we think. … Continue reading

Posted in Publishing and Self Publishing, Resident Writing Coach, Uncategorized | 7 Comments

What Is the Real Purpose of Writing?

I would imagine that nearly every writer has an understanding of why they write. Most of us have been lifelong readers. Most of us have deeply respected and admired those talented people who produce movies in our head with nothing … Continue reading

Posted in Focus, Resident Writing Coach, Writer's Attitude | 16 Comments

Getting Jiggy with the Nitty Gritty, or, Improving Your Sentences

As writers we spend most of our time torn between needing to write and needing to market what we’ve written. Then, when we’re writing, our focus is often on improving our characters or the big picture story and characters’ arcs. … Continue reading

Posted in Cliches, Description, Editing Tips, Resident Writing Coach, Revision and Editing, Uncategorized, Writing Craft, Writing Lessons | 25 Comments

Good Endings: What Should Yours Include?

What’s the right ending for your novel? This isn’t a simple question to answer, because there are many factors to consider. But the first thing you want to think about is the story’s genre. Let’s take a simple example. Suppose … Continue reading

Posted in Endings, Resident Writing Coach, Uncategorized | 17 Comments

Help Us Celebrate! It’s One Stop for Writers’ 2nd Anniversary

WOW! It’s been two years since Lee, Becca, and I held our breath and threw open the doors of One Stop for Writers, a unique online library stuffed with tools, resources, and tutorials to provide writers with a better way to … Continue reading

Posted in One Stop For Writers, Uncategorized, Writing Craft, Writing Resources | 6 Comments

What’s the Dark Night Moment All About?

You’re coming to the end of the tunnel, and you see a bright light illuminating the finish line. You are almost through writing your novel! If you’ve done your homework, you’ve carefully worked out the big build to the exciting … Continue reading

Posted in Characters, Fear, High Stakes, Motivation, Plotting, Resident Writing Coach, Tension, Writing Craft | 4 Comments

Fast-Draft Writing for NaNoWriMo and Every Other Month

I am an advocate of intentional writing, which almost always means slow writing, but sometimes it makes sense to write a fast draft of a book – if, for example, you are participating in NaNoWriMo, have a chunk of time … Continue reading

Posted in NaNoWriMo Strategy & Support, Resident Writing Coach, Uncategorized, Writing Craft | 14 Comments

Writing to the Beat: Translating Story Beats to Any Genre

Readers of my blog know I’m a big fan of beat sheets, even creating a beat sheet for romance stories. Because of that, writers ask me what beats they should include in their mystery, thriller, or *insert any genre here* … Continue reading

Posted in Character Arc, Characters, Conflict, High Stakes, Plotting, Resident Writing Coach, Story Structure, Uncategorized, Writing Craft, Writing Lessons | 13 Comments

Using the Novel Journal for Writing Breakthroughs

I was at a Bouchercon some years ago and did a panel with some other thriller authors. Before it began we were interacting with some people in the audience, and a woman in the front row made a funny comment … Continue reading

Posted in Experiments, Resident Writing Coach, Uncategorized, Writing Craft | 25 Comments

How to Keep a Short Story Short

Part of constraining a short story to its simplest form is to observe the convention of its length. Edgar Allen Poe said it should aim for a single effect on the reader and should be of a length that could … Continue reading

Posted in Resident Writing Coach, Short Stories, Uncategorized, Writing Craft, Writing Lessons | 7 Comments