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Write what you know? I don't think so.

Let’s call her Kate (secretly, my favorite name in high school). She’s fourteen years old, completely unaware of life barreling down on her. An idea pops her head. Where does it come from and why? Thankfully, she’s too green to question it.  She decides to write a story about fox hunting. 

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Why Size Matters...in your book video trailer

 

Grab your readers with a video hook

I’m a sucker for videos of cute baby animals. Kittens, elephants, bears. Thankfully, the Internet is full of these and millions of other videos that help pass the time between waking up and when the caffeine kicks in. I must confess that I’m miserly with thi…

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Insidious "the" and 23 other words to cut from your writing

When I was fourteen, my descriptive paragraph of a drowning man won me a place at the school district’s yearly creative writing workshop. This workshop turned out to be a big deal for me, and not just because I got out of classes for a week, though that was a terrific bonus for a tenth-grader. This …

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Don't Make Me Blush! Is Your Cover too Hot?

You might have noticed that Facebook groups are all abuzz about the new changes to the mysterious algorithm that Facebook uses to decide what content gets pushed out to your fans from your author page. 


I say mysterious because FB doesn’t really want you to know all the details. That would…

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Favorite Research Tools for Writers

Today, I took a trip from Londonium to Constantinopolis. I travelled by road, river and sea. It took me 50 days and cost 1505 denarii. And I did it all without leaving my desk thanks to ORBIS, The Stanford Geospatial Network Model of the Roman World.

Yes, I fell down a rabbit hole while doing res…

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Outlining a Novel is a Personal Experience. What's Yours?

One of the main reasons I go to writing conventions is to talk to other writers about how they outline. I ask every presenter during panel discussions and bring up the subject of outlining during lunch and cocktails. Maybe I'm a bit obsessed. But I find the wildly different answers from writers both…

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Take an Idea, Leave an Idea

When I first decided to take writing from a hobby to a career, I quickly realized that the days of writing for my muse were gone. I no longer had the luxury of waiting for inspiration to hit. I had to write NOW! I had to write today, tomorrow and the next day. That was the only way to build my craft…

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12 Reasons Why I Didn't Finish Your Book

One of the bonus’s of being a subscriber to Kindle Unlimited is that I can read a huge number of books for free. This means that I don’t suffer through bad writing. If I don’t like something, I delete it unfinished, without remorse. Sometimes, I only get through a few pages before hitting the kill…

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What's Your Niche?

Niche markets are often overlooked in the grand marketing scheme. These little nuggets may seem to be more trouble than they’re worth. Isn’t it easier to target the big guys, make tons of sales with one swoop? The problem is that new authors are practically banned from the big-box book stores. You m…

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Best Practices for Showcasing Your Books

There’s nothing quite as exciting for a new author as holding your first book in your hand. It’s a moment like no other. 
 

And then the reality sets in. 
 

How do I let people know about my book?
 

That’s a question I often hear when working with first-time authors. Book marketing can b…

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