writer struggles

3 Crucial Ways to Become a Best Selling Author

In more than twenty years of writing, publishing, and teaching there are 3 crucial things I’ve noticed about successful, best selling authors that took them from amateur scribbler to published professional.

1. We get clear on why we are doing this writing thing in the first place. What drives us? What is our purpose for expressing ourselves with words, as opposed to say, photography, painting, dance, or music? How is our passion sparked and sustained? Clarity is essential.

2. We Read More »

webinar

The Benefits of Webinars for Writers

Guest Post by Jasmine June Cabanaw

Being a writer in the digital age certainly has both pros and cons. Anyone who used to work in print can attest to the longing for seeing words on the page instead of the screen. As a writer, is there really anything better than seeing your words published in print? And yet writing for digital comes with its own set of perks.

One of the biggest perks of writing digitally is access to learning … Read More »

5habits

How to Make 2016 Your Best Writing Year Ever!

I was reflecting on some writing goals for the upcoming year and I thought I’d share them with you! Below you’ll find five ways to make 2016 your best writing year ever. Do you have specific writing or creative goals in mind? Reach out! I’d love to hear about them.

1. Plan it out! Set some specific goals for what you’d like to accomplish in 2016. It can be in terms of daily/weekly practice, word count, draft completion, or publishing … Read More »

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You Are Rich (And You Don’t Even Know It)

Guest Post by Jasmine June Cabanaw

Back in August, I made a decision to practice gratitude. This is not an easy thing. It has to be deliberate and disciplined and requires constant mindfulness. Honestly, there are days when I feel exhausted from it. However, since I started practicing gratitude, I have become so much more grounded, confident, content and happy.

It turns out, practicing gratitude involves a lot more than thinking positive thoughts. It means being nice to people who … Read More »

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Are You a Brilliant Reader?

“All great writers are great readers.”

I was recently talking to a best-selling author about students we sometimes run across who say they don’t read very often. We both looked at each other and told them, as if they were standing right in front of us, “Then your writing will never improve.”

It’s as simple as that. Every successful writer I know is a voracious and diverse reader. How else do we learn about style and what’s possible with sentence … Read More »

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5 Perfect Gifts for Writers

Guest Post by Jasmine June Cabanaw

Do you have a writer on your holiday shopping list (or are you a writer hoping to receive the perfect gift)? Then this wish list of the perfect gifts for writers is for you.

Choosing a gift for a writer isn’t necessarily all that hard; notebooks, word games, and gift cards to book stores all make easy gifts. But if you’re looking for a truly perfect gift (because go big or go home, right?) … Read More »

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How to Persevere as a Writer

“Ambition is the path to success. Persistence is the vehicle you arrive in.”

One of the biggest challenges I’ve noticed over the years with my students is persistence. Simply sticking with the process. Life happens and grand excuses arise. They feel so real and insurmountable. A death in the family, a divorce, a major move, an illness, a flood, fire, or earthquake— all terrific things to write about and great material for your practice, especially in the specific moments of … Read More »

Rose

Memoir Done Right: Writing Without Judgement

Guest post by Sheila Hamilton

I’m an investigative reporter, trained to be alert to things that don’t seem right. And yet I missed much of the unfolding of my husband’s mental illness. By the time I’d pieced together the puzzle of who David was, he was falling apart. My once brilliant, intense, and hilarious partner was dead within six weeks of a formal diagnosis of bipolar disorder, leaving my nine-year-old daughter and me without as much as a note to … Read More »

Process

Developing Your Writing Process

The brilliant writer Donald Maass said, “Authors who succeed in the twenty first century are not focused on external measures of validation, but rather they value an inward quest for vision, voice, and invented worlds that are more vividly real that reality itself.”

A writing process develops over time. It’s everything from the type of journal you use to your favorite pen. It’s about habit, continuity and completion. Everything from the time of day you sit down to write, to … Read More »

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Easy Steps for Creating a Gratitude Journal

Guest post by: Karen Benke

Last Thanksgiving I started a gratitude project, something that has brought many gifts over the last year. More treasures, really, than I could have imagined. And I have a pretty good imagination!

Basically the project involves picking up a pen and a random notebook. At the end of your day— no matter how exhausted you are— you simply dash out moments, images, snatches of dialog (you know the ones) that sparked joy.

Some nights you … Read More »