articles A Writing Lesson from Nantucket I went to Nantucket this past weekend, and it was pretty magical. No, I didn’t see a giant white whale or see Emily Gilmore at Read More » October 1, 2019 No Comments You Can’t Fail You can’t fail. No, really. You can’t. Even if you don’t sell a single book. Even if you get tons of bad reviews. Even if Read More » September 17, 2019 No Comments Two Writing Lessons from Blinded by the Light This weekend I saw the best movie of the year: Blinded by the Light. No, I am not just saying that because I am a Read More » September 3, 2019 No Comments My Story of Stuck I am not going to lie to you; on Friday, I absolutely did not want to write. I had the kind of dread usually reserved for Read More » August 27, 2019 No Comments #1 Way to Guarantee Your Book Won’t Get Done Do you want to know how I know someone will never finish her book? She tells me, “I am going to write it next quarter.” Read More » August 20, 2019 No Comments How I Finished My First Few Books By the time I graduated from college, I had completed three novels. One was a political fairytale (I live in D.C., okay?); one was a Read More » August 13, 2019 No Comments « Previous Page1 Page2 Page3 … Page43 Next » Newsletter Is your idea book-worthy? Take the quiz. Step 1 of 3 33% Your Name*Your Email* Are you a fiction or non-fiction writer?*FictionNon-Fiction How long has this idea lived in your head?I got this idea today!It has been floating in my brain for the past few months.I have been living with this idea for over six months.How well do you know your characters?I think I know their names. I think.I know them somewhat. I know what they look like and a few of their interests, but I don’t know much more than that.I know them better than I know my family and friends. I think my boyfriend is a bit jealous.Do you know what your protagonist wants?Wait. She wants something?I know what career she wants.I truly understand her deepest desires. I know the things that she is afraid to admit even to herself.Is someone or something preventing your character from getting their desires?Umm, no. I don’t want to be mean!I have a vague idea of a man that is getting in her way, but I am not clear on the details yet.Oh, yeah. I already know all the ways the antagonist will thwart her efforts to reach her dreams.If you are writing a fantasy, do you know the rules of magic?I don’t believe in rules. It’s magic! Anything is possible.I have one or two written down.Let me pull out the rulebook…Not applicable.Can you summarize your book in a sentence?Well, you see, it started on a March Day. Lindsey wasn’t enjoying the weather, so she called her friend, Dave. They decided to…Yes, but it is a really long sentence.Yep! I can say it really easily, too. How long has this idea lived in your head?I got this idea today!It has been floating in my brain for the past few months.I have been living with this idea for over six months.Do you have a message?Umm, I have one on Facebook.!I have a vague idea of one.Yep!Do you have an outline for your book?I have some ideas scribbled on the back of a napkin.I have a general outline.I have a chapter outline done!Do you know who your audience is?I am assuming you aren’t talking about the one in the local movie theater…I have a vague idea. I know what gender I am targeting.I can tell you everything about them! I know what they want and what is getting in their way.Do you know what makes your book different from others?You mean I can’t just copy my favorite book?I think so. I know one or two things that distinguish it.Definitely! I know what makes my book stand out.Can you summarize your book in a sentence?Well, you see, it begins when I was born. My mom was in the hospital for a long time. The doctors said I was…Yes, but it is a really long sentence.Yep! I can say it really easily, too.