Confessions of A NaNoWriMo Failure

By Ronda Simmons Have you heard of NaNoWriMo? It stands for National Novel Writing Month. The challenge is to write an entire first draft, fifty thousand words, during November. If things go well, you’ll have a manuscript at the end of the thirty days of the eleventh month.

Five Books I’m Glad I Read in School

By Brian Kaufman I asked a writer friend if he’d ever read a particular classic novel. His face puckered up as he admitted, “Yes, I had to read that for school.” There’s not enough time for all the great books. My friend, author Pat Stoltey, recently told me, “My worst moment when I was aContinue reading “Five Books I’m Glad I Read in School”

The Perfect Antidote

By Eleanor Shelton The sun is shining brightly over the mountains, there are hiking trails, time galore to do what you want, wine, good food, naps, reading. It sounds like the perfect vacation, right? Except, it’s a writing retreat. So, where’s the writing? Where’s the inspiration when you have the ideal time for it? WhatContinue reading “The Perfect Antidote”

We Need Dependable, Not Inspirational

By Miranda Birt Who here has heard habit trumps motivation? I’ve mostly heard this phrase at conferences, in interviews, on YouTube, and anywhere else a person can listen to writing advice. They all say the same thing: “if you want to be successful, you need to make writing a habit.” I think it makes totalContinue reading “We Need Dependable, Not Inspirational”

Productive Distractions

By David E. Sharp Great ideas rarely come to me when I’m staring at a word document. That would be a convenient time for them to show up, but inspiration is fickle. Maybe it’s because I can’t get my inner monologue to stop repeating, “Come up with a great idea. Come up with a greatContinue reading “Productive Distractions”

Getting Off of The Struggle Bus

By Ronda Simmons The pandemic has passed the six-month mark, and I’ve been riding the struggle bus. Michael Christensen defines the struggle bus as “an imaginary bus representing a state of perpetual struggles or difficulties. A metaphor that relates physically riding a bus with going through hardships. Used with the same terminology of riding anContinue reading “Getting Off of The Struggle Bus”

What I Do When I’m Not Writing

By Brian Kaufman Introduced to a new coworker recently, “What do you do for fun?” I explained that I write. Since I write textbooks for a living, my new friend pressed me for a different answer. “No, not work. What do you do for fun?” I write. “You don’t spend every moment of every dayContinue reading “What I Do When I’m Not Writing”

Accountability Partners: Man, Beast, or Tech

My Fitbit died last week. It had always been on my wrist (other than showers) for the last year and a half. It held me accountable for moving more, celebrated when I moved a lot more, and actually told me the time. Something is missing that had become part of me.

Giving Props Where Props Are Due

By David E. Sharp Romance is a genre that gets a lot of flak. And I must admit I am not an avid reader of it. But I am a librarian, and as such, I hold that every book has its reader. I was recently privileged to live out a love story of my own,Continue reading “Giving Props Where Props Are Due”

We Like to Do A Little Digging

By Ronda Simmons So, you’ve written your first draft, and it’s okay. It’s a compelling story, your plot is on point. You’ve paid attention to structure, character development, grammar, and spelling. But when you read it, you know there’s something off. The characters feel flat, the dialog is emotionally dull. Something is missing.