A little over a year ago, I saw a guest post on one of my writing heroes websites:writers helping writers. Angela Ackerman and Becca Puglisi announced their brand new writing Coach residency. The coaches were HIGHLY esteemed with the likes of James Scott Bell and C.S Laiken.
When I saw it I was so excited. I thought it was amazing that they had brought together such an insane line up of coaches and I’d get the benefit of learning from all their tips.
I also made a promise to myself that day. I swore that whether it was in five years, fifteen years or fifty years, I would be able to call myself a writing coach. I didn’t know how I’d manage it or if I’d ever be good enough to call myself that. But that didn’t matter. I wanted to be one and I was determined to help others.
So I was totally and utterly mind fuggled when a few weeks ago, an email from Angela herself dropped into my inbox asking if I’d join their coach programme…Continue reading →
If you have a shit book cover we won’t pick up your novel. Sloppy blurb and we chuck the book on the NBR (Never Be Read) pile. If we get past all that and find forgettable characters buried in your pages, well… fuck you author, here’s a one star review.
A couple of weeks ago, I was lording it up in Paris with the girls for a cocktail fuelled weekend… I still have a hangover!
The thing is, I wouldn’t be a writer if I didn’t take advantage of any and every opportunity to spew some more of my hyperbolae into the world, and Paris has provided me the perfect opportunity to do just that.
I have a terrible memory. Like ,really bad. But my substandard brain cells got me thinking about books and specifically, about characters.
Without memorable characters, your book is worthless. Why?
Because books are written about characters. If your characters are boring, your books boring. But how do you make them memorable without turning them into the equivalent of a glitter covered literary drag queen? Continue reading →
We all want to learn to write better, yes? There are plenty of books out there that teach you to write better, write faster, do outlines, plot, structure, work on your prose, style and basically every other aspect of your writing you could think of.
Please welcome the lovely, and extremely funny Lockie Young. You can find out more about Lockie on his: Website, Blog, or Facebook. You can find his first book here, his sequel here, and some of his short stories here.
Life’s a funny old thing, so often we go through difficult times and have to make hard choices. Sometimes we lose friends, loved ones, gain new ones, have children. We travel and feel moved to change our entire lives. We give up careers and start again. I’ve seen my fair share of cross roads probably the most significant was being told if I waited to have kids, it might be too late.
Turn left – be young free and have money, travel.
Turn right – fork out thousands for fertility treatment and suffer losses and emotional torment.
I turned right. It was the right decision, but when you’re faced with a cross roads the decision isn’t always obvious.
This week, the writespiration is all about Cross Roads. Maybe your character is physically at a cross road, maybe they have a choice to make. If you fancy joining in, jot a few words or a short story and I will publish it with next weeks post.
You’ve written ‘THE END’ on your first, second, eighth – or if you’re me it will mostly likely be my third draft. You know it’s not perfect, but you’re happy you have taken your manuscript as far as you can. What next?
Alpha / Beta readers
As I approach the end of my first draft this concept is becoming more than just a twinkle in my eye. It’s quietly growing into the elephant in the corner of the room.
What are beta readers? How do I get one? How long will it take? Will they tear my work to pieces? Continue reading →
A slightly different challenge this week. It’s another of my favourite writing sites to help unblock the block! The website is called One Word. The aim of this game is to use the word posted below (don’t look till you are ready to write) as a prompt and then free write for 60 seconds, no stopping. Don’t edit, don’t worry, just write. Mine is right at the bottom of this post with the prompt word, no cheating!
Now, to the winner of the worst possible sentence from last weeks writespiration, and boy did we have some cracking entries. And by cracking, I mean awful! Continue reading →
When you’re tucked into one of your guilty pleasure books, how conscious are you? How do you read? For me, after a few paragraphs my eyes switch off, my mind opens up the words disappear and I begin to see watch the book unfold. For me, reading is exactly the same as watching TV, it feels like I visit Neverland with Peter, or the Discworld with Rincewind, or any other of the infinite worlds in books. But I am trying to be mindful, and be a collector of sentences and excerpts. Continue reading →