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Archive for the 'Writing Tip' Category

Writer Tip: Anna Campbell

“My best advice if you’re starting out is sit down and write a whole book from page one to the end. That will teach you more than anything else, wonderful as the resources available to a writer are. Don’t listen to the siren call of a new idea when you hit the doldrums. Keep plugging on until you finish that manuscript. Then put the book under the bed for six months and write something else. Only then come back to edit the first manuscript – you’ll be amazed what writing a second manuscript has taught you. The other benefit of putting your work aside for an extended period of time is that you can see mistakes more easily once you’re not quite so close to the story.”

Visit Anna Campbell’s website at www.annacampbell.info
Purchase Anna’s upcoming release, My Reckless Surrender (June 2010)

Writer Tip: Shelley Munro

“My advice is to keep hope in the mail ie. always have more than one submission out with editors or agents at a time. If you receive a rejection, this means you’ll still have another submission to pin your hopes on, and it will cushion your disappointment about the rejection.

During my pre-published days I found the hope in the mail method worked well for me. I entered contests. I submitted manuscripts to editors and agents. I worked out a plan for each manuscript, and if I received a rejection, I’d evaluate the feedback and move on to the next part of my plan. Since becoming published, I still adhere to the hope in the mail method as much as possible. Having more than one submission floating around really does help cushion disappointment if you receive a rejection.”

You’re already at Shelley’s website. Why don’t you explore a little while you’re here?
Purchase Shelley’s next release, The Bottom Line.

Writer Tip: Victoria Janssen

“Read everything you can, both inside and outside your genre.”

Visit Victoria Janssen’s website at www.victoriajanssen.com
Purchase Victoria’s latest release, The Moonlight Mistress

Writer Tip: Samantha Kane

“Editing: The most important thing you will ever do. I’m not kidding. First, self-edit. Find your style. Do you like to edit as you write? Do you prefer to finish the first draft and then go back and edit? Fine. The important thing is that you do it. You may scoff, but there are people out there who skip this step altogether. Amazing but true. Cross your t’s, dot your i’s, and edit for grammar and punctuation. Then edit for content: GMC, characterization, plot consistency, romantic conflict, dialogue and dialogue tags. It is not your writing group’s, your critique partner’s or your editor’s job to do this. That’s right, IT IS NOT YOUR EDITOR’S JOB. By the time you send your manuscript to your editor it should be as clean as you can possibly make it. Most editors will tell you that their job is content editing, not line editing. And if you send a submission full of errors to an editor or agent? In most cases they won’t read past the first glaring mistake.

Second, edits from an editor or agent. Do them. Suck it up and drive on. You all three have the same goal: to produce the best, most marketable book possible. If they have to fight you every step of the way, then guess what? You’re not worth their time. Because there are writers out there who will gladly do the edits. And that is the author they would rather work with. The best advice I ever received was from writer Claudia Dain, who said the correct response to an editor’s request for rewrites or edits was, “You want words? I’ve got words. I’m a writer.” I have followed that advice religiously. I do the edits, I don’t argue, I get them done on time, and I hand them in with a thank you. And yes, this does make a difference in how I’m treated. And I also think my books are better for every edit I have made. Remember, editors and agents are your first readers. If something doesn’t work for them, chances are it won’t work for Jane Doe Reader, either.”

Visit Samantha Kane’s website at www.samanthakane.us
Purchase Samantha’s latest release, Love in Exile.

Writer Tip: Kristan Higgins

“The best writing tip…hmmm. I guess it would be keep your head down and get the job done, first of all. You can’t be published if you don’t finish your book. Be ruthless. Pretty good books aren’t going to sell, so dig deep. And have faith in yourself. No one was born published.”

Visit Kristan’s website at www.kristanhiggins.com
Purchase Kristan’s latest release, The Next Best Thing

Writer Tip: Jody Wallace aka Ellie Marvel

“Grammar matters. So does punctuation. Seriously, they do, and your future editors don’t exist to fix them for you. Editors reject books that need basic grammatical polishing even if the story’s good.

But here’s the awesome part. The correctness of grammar and mechanics, 95% of the time, isn’t a matter of opinion, unlike so many other aspects of writing. Revel in the security you can at least get that part of your book “right”. Just be careful, and don’t trust Microsoft or anyone who tells you to put a comma where you pause when you read it aloud or that the word “was” means you overused passive voice.”

Visit Jody Wallace’s website at www.jodywallace.com
Purchase Jody’s latest release What She Deserves, now in electrons from Samhain Publishing!

Writer Tip: Ashley Ladd

“Find a good critique partner (or two) that you trust and work closely with them. A second set of eyes to view your work and give input is invaluable.”

Visit Ashley Ladd’s website at www.ashleyladd.com
Purchase one of her releases or read excerpts at Ashley Ladd’s book page.

NB: Note from Shelley. Want to find a critique partner? Want to know what to expect from a critique partner? For more details about critiquing or finding a critque partner check out my article – To Critique or Not to Critique

Writer Tip: Gail Carriger

“I believe that to make it as a writer takes a combination of skill, persistence, and luck. William Feather aptly puts it, “Success seems to be largely a matter of hanging on after others have let go.” There is no way to predict what will be the right pitch at the right time, so my only advise is the kind no one wants to hear. Sit down, write, and finish. Correct it and send it off. Then ignore it and write something completely different. Then send that off. Don’t get attached to your work. Because that’s what it is. Work. Not your art. Not your baby. Just your work. If you can’t disconnect yourself, I don’t think you’ll be emotionally able to survive this industry. ”

Visit Gail Carriger’s website at www.gailcarriger.com
Purcahse one of Gail’s books – Soulless was trust upon the unsuspecting public Oct 1, 2009. Changelessis due in April of 2010, and Blameless September 2010.

Writer Tip: Sasha White

“Don’t fall prey to believing everything you read in Craft books or hear in workshops is the only way to do things. Always remember that what people tell you works, is what works for them – and what works for them might not work for you. You may be different, and forcing yourself to do things in a way that isn’t natural to you will only hurt your writing. Ultimately you have to learn to Trust in yourself, and your own process.”

Visit Sasha White’s website at www.sashawhite.net
Sasha’s latest release, One Weekend is out today at Samhain Publishing!

Writer Tip: Crystal Jordan

“Form a network with other writers. This can be in person at local writer’s meetings, or online on forums and websites, or some combination of the two. More heads are better than one when it comes to knowing about new opportunities for authors or hearing about changes in the industry (and there are always changes). It gives you people to bounce ideas off of or to ask questions of that might not be appropriate for editors or agents. It also gives you a social group in this crazy world of writing. As important as it is to have non-writing friends to keep you grounded, you also need people who understand the process you go through every time you sit down at the keyboard.”

Visit Crystal Jordan’s website at www.crystaljordan.com
Purchase Crystal’s next release, In the Heat of the Night