What Writers Can Learn From The KonMari Method

Letting go good characters and clutter words header

When I’m sleep deprived, I spew out random things, and sometimes, just sometimes, they stick. In this case, a friend, while talking about reaching the end of her series, noted how sad she’d be to let go of those characters and their world. My response (knowing she’d also read The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up) was to say that she needed to KonMari her characters.  Namely, thank them for the time they’d spent together and the joy they’d sparked inside of her, and then let them go, making room for new stories and characters that will bring her just as much joy. Continue reading

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Scene Building: Setting The Pieces Into Motion

Header for scene building series

We are continuing our scene building series, which started at https://wp.me/pbN5v-jE.

We’ve discussed the pieces that are needed to build a good scene, but now we are going to dive into the actual process so we can see them in action. I will be using the very first scene in chapter one from a book I wrote in junior high — let it never be said that I’m not a good sport! At the time, I was hopped up on Tolkien and it really shows; however, it is perfect for this exercise because young Sarah was just beginning to learn the ropes. So let’s break it down. Continue reading

Don’t Leave Your Scene In Check

Creative scene building using chess pieces header photo

Join me for an in-depth look at building a scene.

What makes a good scene? For some writers, the answer to this question comes naturally while others struggle to make a scene come to life. If you fall in the latter category, don’t fret. Scenes have a lot of moving components, and it takes practice, an open mind, and a lot of reworking to make them really shine. But even before we get into practicing the development of a scene, we have to understand what makes a good one.

I personally like to imagine a chess board, with each piece representing a different component of a good scene. On this imaginary board, characters represent the queen as they are arguably the most dynamic part of a scene, especially since they are often driving it (albeit setting can be driving force in its own right). Characters in their uniqueness shape a scene often in unforeseen ways much like the queen, which can move in pretty much every direction on the chess board. However, characters can’t hold together a scene by themselves. Relying solely on characters, particularly on characters’ dialogue, can lead to a bland scene filled solely with talking heads. Whatever you do, avoid having talking heads or hobos in outer space. Continue reading

The Business Of Writing — Part III

The Business of Writing Part 3 Basic Header

This is the extremely tardy third part of three-part series “The Business of Writing.” Part I and Part II, while very old, still might be of some use when it comes to crafting a business plan and platforming. This third part is largely about self-care and growth opportunities.

You have your writing business plan in place, and you are starting to build your platform, now what? Well, now you need to turn the focus back on yourself through resume building, pursuing “writerly” learning opportunities, and self-care. Continue reading

YouTube Channels Writers Should Check Out

YouTube Channels for Writers header

I love the custom content that has emerged on YouTube, especially those that are aimed at helping writers improve their craft or aimed at connecting readers. Today, I’m sharing five of my favorite YouTube Channels. I hope you will check them out because they have a lot to offer, plus they are entertaining!

Continue reading

What Is An Augur?

What is an augur? Map of ancient rome background.

Augurs feature predominately in my upcoming fantasy series of short stories. Unless you’re knowledgeable about certain strands of history, you might be wondering what is an augur? Well, it all ties into ancient Rome.  Continue reading

Why Writers Should Care About Infrastructure

Infrastructure header that shows electrical lines superimposed above a disaster scene

Infrastructure makes everyday life — as we know it — possible. Much of it is buried and can go unthought of when it’s working; however, throw in a major storm that overwhelms our wastewater systems, and bam! we’re wading through poop water.

The average person really pays no mind to infrastructure — minus during times of failure or when news headlines note the U.S.’s crumbling infrastructure. Writers need to step outside that blissful complacency though.  The benefits are too good to pass up. Continue reading