Category Archives: Writer’s Life

YA Author Cindy Hogan: Balancing Writing with Real Life

Wow, I have my first guest blogger today!  Help me welcome author Cindy M. Hogan, who’s on a virtual book tour for her latest YA suspense novel, Created. With three YA novels under her belt now, plus a busy family and community commitments, I asked Cindy the ever-present question in my own life:  how do keep your life from spinning out of control?  She came up with some great advice for us, so read on: ************************* I’m so excited to be visiting Jennifer’s blog today. The topic she gave me is one that I have learned a ton about in the last year and a half and I hope to share with you what I’ve learned. How do I balance my writing life with my real life? My writing life before I published was pretty off and on. I didn’t schedule any writing time, I just wrote when it was convenient … Continue reading

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Writing Practice & Writing Prompts

Anyone who loves creative writing and wants to write well can tell you that it’s hard work.  I can sweat, open a vein, and/or pound my head against the monitor with the best of them.  But like anything worth doing, the more you practice writing, the easier it gets. In one of the great writing books, Writing Down the Bones, Natalie Goldberg talks a lot about daily writing practice. Pick a word or phrase and just write what comes to mind. It doesn’t matter whether it’s dialogue, scenes, or poetry. You can write from your own memory, from a weird dream, or your neighbor’s soap-opera life.  Just not my life – that’s my own story fodder! I know, I know.  Daily writing practice sounds tedious.  But it’s actually the chance to write just for the joy of writing.  You get to play with words – how they sound, how they … Continue reading

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Great Writerly Blogs and . . . THE WINNER

The contest is over and we had a blast!  Samantha Warren had a humdinger of a 30th birthday celebration, we all had fun visiting various blogs looking for answers and finding interesting new blogging voices, and by now some lucky person has won a Kindle Mini.  I actually came in second on one day’s quiz and won a copy of Reluctant Guardian from Kristy K. James, but since I was participating with my blogs, I wasn’t eligible every day and so didn’t have a chance at the Kindle Mini.  Awwww.  But hey, a Kindle Touch is still on my Christmas list! Hmm, let’s not get sidetracked here.  The winner of Stephen King’s On Writing here is . . . Francelia Belton!  She’s a writer, a fellow member of the WANA1011 class, and is just setting up her blog.  Maybe when it’s live, she’ll stop by here and post a link!  … Continue reading

Posted in Blog Mashups, Editing, Writer's Life | Tagged , , , , , , | 5 Comments

Weekly Blog Mashup for Writers

As I browse blogs each week, I’ll post a mash-up of the best ones here.  Some have great writing tips, some are focused on publishing, and some are just plain fun.  Enjoy! First, some awesome advice from Joanna Penn:  Writer’s Block: The 12-Step Cure Jane Friedman has a great post over on Writer Unboxed about shifting our normal writers’ attitudes about query letters and blog headlines. If you’re interested in finding like-minded people on Twitter, with some Twitter etiquette thrown in, try Kristen Lamb’s excellent post here. Children’s and YA writers know that the kids need to solve their story conflicts themselves, not have parents or teachers step in for them.  But does that mean parents shouldn’t show up at all?  Kait Nolan has some great advice. And last but not least, have a little fun with I Write Like….  You enter several paragraphs (or more) of your own writing, … Continue reading

Posted in Blog Mashups, Children's/YA, Editing, Writer's Life | Tagged , , , , , , | 7 Comments

Great Gifts for Writers

Christmas, Hanukkah, birthdays . . . what do you give the writer in your life?  Speaking as one of those writers, I have a few gift ideas.  (Are you reading, Hubby o’Mine?) A Kindle or Nook e-reader.  I’m not an iPad wanna-have – that’s what I got my fancy phone for.  But boy, do I want a Kindle.  So many books, so little time, and if I have an e-reader, I can tuck it in my purse and always have something to read, not to mention lighter luggage when I travel.  And the frugal Scot in me loves the fact that I can borrow e-books from the library for free! Computer Stuff.  At the top of this list would be a new computer, of course.  But there are all kinds of other things that we writers need/want:  a laser printer that’s cheaper to run than the ink jet the family … Continue reading

Posted in Misc, Writer's Life | 5 Comments