Big Ideas

More tips for picky eaters!

Looking for more tips for picky eaters? If you have a picky eater in your family, you are probably familiar with the feeling that you’re in the middle of a food fight. You’ve prepared food but your picky eater won’t try a bite. Let the battle of wills begin! But I found that getting into… Read more »

NaNoWriMo 2014

It’s almost November! And you know what that means? NaNoWriMo 2014! NaNoWriMo or National Novel Writing Month is only a few days away and I’m itching to get started. I had two ideas in mind for this month’s project. Project Ideas 1. “Sweetie” is a retelling of Hansel and Gretel set in Depression-Era Baltimore. -or-… Read more »

How to Find An Agent For My Novel

Earlier this year, I finished the first draft of my middle novel, Dare Club. Once the draft was done, I dedicated the rest of the year to revision and to find an agent for my novel. I knew that it would be tough to find an agent for my novel wasn’t going to be easy… Read more »

Too Many Critique Groups?

Are you a in a critique group? I am – actually three critique groups! I think critique groups are truly invaluable to any serious writer and not just for works of fiction. I meet regularly with a friend I met through NaNoWriMo (coming very soon!) to discuss non-fiction queries, article ideas and fiction ideas. We… Read more »

Banned Books – Is it ever worth it?

How do you feel about banned books? I’m pretty opposed to banning books. I don’t think every book should be read, but I don’t think anything good can come of trying to ban books. In fact, I have a lovely coffee mug from Book Riot via Quarterly featuring the titles of banned books. I’ve heard… Read more »

Picture Book Workshop and Manuscript Submission

In June, I attended a picture book workshop hosted by my local SCBWI chapter and led by editors Harold Underdown and Eileen Robinson. In addition to the picture book workshop, Harold and Eileen provided manuscript critiques and tips on revision. I submitted my story Mission: Compostable!¬†for critique. Harold gave generally positive critique and suggested I… Read more »

Writers Rejection Slips

Do you keep track of your writers rejection slips? Way, way back when I first started submitting my short stories to literary magazines, I kept a big file full of all my writers rejection slips. Since I followed the advice of all the big writers’ advice magazines, I was sending out stories to ten different… Read more »

Regional dialect and writing

Does your story require writing in a regional dialect? I recently finished reading two books, Porgy and The Owl Service, that I believe were dependent on regional dialect to truly convey the stories and characters. Last year, I picked up Porgy after I heard an interview on Fresh Air with one of the performers in… Read more »

Writing Your Truth

Back in February, I attended the SCWBI Winter Conference. When people in my critique group, or other writers that I know online ask me how I felt about the conference, I answer that I felt both elated and deflated. I learned a lot, but I was also reminded that I had a lot more to… Read more »

Word Count

One of my favorite parts of NaNoWriMo is the word count widget. I love feeding my daily total into the widget and seeing the graph jump up, seeing the daily words increase, seeing the decrease in words per day to finish on time. I lost my first NaNoWriMo back in 2011, but won in both… Read more »