It Can (And Should) Happen.

By Eleanor Shelton

There was a French female rugby player who was a shoo-in for the French national rugby team. The Olympics were on the horizon. She even got the five rings tattooed on her forearm. One day she was jogging through the woods, a place she regularly ran, when a tree randomly fell on her. No storm, no wind, no lumberjacks, nothing.

It just fell. As if the hand of God or Mother Nature pushed it on her. Had she started her run a few minutes earlier, or a few seconds later, the tree would have fallen harmlessly across the path.

Continue reading “It Can (And Should) Happen.”


By Brian Kaufman

Having finished two novels and grown tired of rejections, I began to write a third novel. I had a clever idea and a marvelous, operatic ending in mind. 35.000 words in, I realized I’d dead-ended. I stuck my stack of legal pads in a box (this was before home computers walked the earth) and sent the box to the dump.

Neglected, deserted, and alone.
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Whova?! What Fresh Hell Is This?

By JC Lynne and Bonnie McKnight

From February 2020 on our reality has shifted from one hot mess to another. Oh hell, who are we kidding? Dare we trace our slippery slope a bit further back? We all have experienced some struggle. Some more than others, we respect that everyone’s experiences are different.

If this hasn’t been your mantra the last 14 months, tell us your secret.
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NCW Announces Spring Writer’s Retreat

By Ronda Simmons

NCW member and famous author Jim Davidson has graciously agreed to lead a writing retreat this spring in Nepal in conjunction with NCW’s annual conference. Jim’s third book, Jim Davidson’s Adventure Cookbook, will be released on April 20, 2021.

Order Your Copy Soon. Supplies Are Limited!
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Flawlessness Is Flawed

By David E. Sharp

I don’t know why anyone would trust me with hiring practices. Nevertheless, I have been on both sides of the job interview process. When I conducted interviews for positions in a Texas library, I had a canned set of questions I was supposed to ask. Among them was the single-most hated job interview question of all time: Tell me about one of your flaws.

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Being in A Crowded Bar May Not Be The Best Plan

By Ronda Simmons

St. Patrick’s Day Reading Suggestions Because Being in a Crowded Bar Might Not be a Good Idea During a Pandemic

The pandemic is forcing another stay-at-home celebration, but that doesn’t mean we can’t celebrate St. Patrick’s Day in style. Besides cooking our favorite Irish foods, drinking Irish beer, and watching Irish programming, we can honor great Irish literary traditions by reading books written by some of her best authors.

Continue reading “Being in A Crowded Bar May Not Be The Best Plan”

Thoughts on Audience: Deuxième Partie

In my blog post last month, I wrote that audience is a necessary, though problematic, consideration for the author. A quick recap—written communication changes, depending on the audience. The way you say something will depend on who’s reading. In some cases (genre fiction), audience expectations will actually shape the finished piece, from pacing to plot outcome. 

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Put Your Story on A Stage

By Eleanor Shelton

As a writer, the best gift I ever received was to hear my scene being brought to life by professional actors. I was invited to participate in a playwriting class at a regional theater. I had never written a play, nor did I think I was about to. But the course needed one more participant to happen. After a little nudging, I thought, “what the heck?” It couldn’t hurt to look at writing from a different perspective. Right?


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How Many Drafts Does It Take to Get to The Center of A Manuscript?

My novel launches in July of this year. It has been a long process full of rewrites, edits, revisions, additions, subtractions, frustrations, and inspirations. Looking back on this beast’s earliest iterations, I wonder how many versions did it go through to get to here.

How Many Licks Does it REALLY Take to Get to the Center of a Tootsie Pop?
The Age Old Question . . .
Continue reading “How Many Drafts Does It Take to Get to The Center of A Manuscript?”