What do the following two pictures have in common? Words? Pictures? Ideas? Yes, yes and yes. But they are also both photos of sources I’m using for my new work-in-progress. Yes, they are drastically different in terms of medium. The first two are reference books I’m madly absorbing so that I can recreate the zeitgeist […]Read More Writing Advice: Five tips to inspire (and improve) your online research
Some years ago, I wrote a blog piece on self-plagiarism, a concept that seems to be largely unknown in circles of wannabe writers these days. It seemed important at that time because I was still teaching full-time at a university, and a former student contacted me to ask for advice. She had been taught over…Read More Self-plagiarism: A writer’s guide
by Patricia J. Parsons Writers write. Editors edit. It’s that simple. Right? Well, not really. Let’s take a trip through the writing-editing process from the beginning of an idea to when a book makes its way into a reader’s hands. An idea forms in a writer’s head and that writer takes a unique, individualized approach […]Read More Who’s on first: Understanding who’s who in book editing
by Patricia J. Parsons If you write fiction, you’ve been told over and over that publishers and readers look for “fresh voices” and it’s much the same for nonfiction. A writer’s voice is that unique fingerprint that identifies that writer’s style, or as it was put to me early in my writing career, style is […]Read More Promoting your writer’s voice online: How do you sound?
It doesn’t matter what kind of work you do: especially if the project is a long one, there often comes a time when you lose momentum. Momentum, of course, is that forward-motion or energy that powers us through our activities toward completion. Writers, perhaps more than many others, need this propulsion to keep the work […]Read More Tips to Keep Momentum in Your Writing
Writers have been using journals of one kind or another for as long as there have been writers. Among them, Victor Hugo, Virginia Woolf, Sylvia Plath, Ernest Hemingway and J.K. Rowling who famously wrote out the first draft of her first Harry Potter book in a journal in a café in Scotland while on government […]Read More Five Ways to Make the Most of Your Writing Journal
Writers get it – at least most of the time. It just may be the case, though, that there are people among us who don’t understand why it’s important to cultivate creativity in our lives. What these people don’t understand is that creativity is not confined to those who follow artistic lives. It’s important to […]Read More Five Ways to Make Your Life More Creative
Albert Einstein once said, “Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new.” If you’re a new writer, you’ll inevitably make mistakes. We all make mistakes – especially when we’re embarking on a new path. Writing is no different. Over the past thirty years, we’ve learned a lot about writing and publishing […]Read More Six Common Mistakes New Writers Make
What is a bestselling book? As a writer, if you haven’t already achieved the status, you may have a goal, or perhaps just a hope, that one of your books will someday become a bestseller. A definition of the term is a good place to begin our discussion. The Oxford English Dictionary, arguably one of […]Read More The Making of a Bestselling Book
Every writer we know has old manuscripts. With the advent of electronic publishing and the completely open wild, wild west of self-publication, the temptation to simply open up the old files and see what flies out is so tantalizing as to be almost too good to pass up. But before you do that, it might […]Read More Should You Revive an Old Book Manuscript?