How to Publish Your Own Short Story Collection – by Rayne Hall…

Wondering what to do with all those short stories you’ve written? Here’s your answer courtesy of Fiction University and Rayne Hall.

Chris The Story Reading Ape's Blog

on Fiction University:

Do you want to gather your short stories in a book?

Here are insider tips for publishing a successful short story collection.

Whether you’re looking for an agent or publisher, or plan to self-publish, these tips will put you ahead of the game.

Continue reading HERE

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How to Face Down Writer Fear – by C.S. Lakin…

Another insightful post by C.S. Lakin…conquering fear.

Chris The Story Reading Ape's Blog

on Live Write Thrive:

Fear is probably the #1 factor preventing writers from seeing success in their careers. I’ve had many writers tell me they’re afraid of failing, afraid of rejection, afraid of bad reviews, afraid people will laugh at them, afraid readers will hate their book, afraid people will judge them or tell them they are selfishly wasting their time writing when they could be doing something more productive or meaningful.

There are probably more reasons to be afraid than there are to keep writing.

Let’s face it. Every single writer has and will have negative responses from their writing. There will always be people that dislike, maybe even hate, your work. That’s life. The sooner you can accept and expect it, the easier it will be to knock over your fear.

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What Words to Avoid in Your Writing

An excellent list written with a sense of humor. I would say the exception to not using some of these words would be in dialogue if the characters we’re creating use words such as “awesome” and “really.”

A Writer's Path

by K. Ross

Writing is tricky. Trying to express your meaning clearly can be hard enough, but also making it engaging can be quite the balancing act. As a writer, I’m still working on it, but as an editor, ill-considered or lazy writing jumps off the page at me like a facehugger from Aliens. While much of any writer’s voice is a product of their individual choices, there are a few words everyone needs to be wary of.

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How to Write Rich Characterization: A Cheat-Sheet – by Bonnie Randall…

A quick read with five good tips!

Chris The Story Reading Ape's Blog

on Fiction University:

A character is infinitely more than just who the author says they are. Like their living, breathing counterparts, fictional characters often reveal themselves in incidental ways.

Here are five quick ways to help readers make powerful inferences about your characters:

Continue reading HERE

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Criticism versus Critique – From the Writers in the Storm Blog

Such a great article on the difference between criticism and critiques and how to be positive while still being useful to the writer. Thank you, Tiffany Yates Martin!

Author Don Massenzio

by Tiffany Yates Martin

No creative soul likes receiving negative feedback on their work—no matter what we might tell you, beloved crit partners, beta readers, editors, agents.

Yes, we may admit we need it, and that it helps immeasurably to get objective input on what may not be as effective on the page as it is in your head, but as one author I work with memorably put it, having someone offer positive, constructive critique of your story is like an Orange Theory workout: You dread it going into it, hate every second while it’s going on, but afterward you feel great having done it.

But receiving negative, destructive input—criticism—can do more damage to your writing, and your creative efforts in general, than almost any other pitfall of writing life. I’ve heard too many horror stories—one just this week that inspired this post—about feedback that shut down authors’ creative impulses…

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Understanding Third-Person Point of View

This is an outstanding article on point of view in writing. During writing workshops I’ve been a part of with the Military Writers Society of America (MWSA), this is a topic that new writers usually have questions about. Now I have an excellent resource to refer writers to. And I appreciated the author’s concise and understandable explanations. So thank you, Tiffany Yates Martin.

Understanding Third-Person Point of View: Omniscient, Limited and Deep | Jane Friedman

Signing with a small publisher? Here’s what to look for. #WritingCommunity #WritingTips

Alison Williams Writing

Re-posting some previous posts that followers have told me they found most helpful. Today’s post was written after I had to re-edit, proofread and generally sort out a manuscript that had been published by a vanity press purporting to be a legitimate small press, who had charged the client in question thousands of pounds. In my subsequent ‘nosing about’, I discovered some authors that had been badly let done by small presses. That said, I do appreciate that there are lots of fabulous small presses out there that work incredibly hard for their authors.

I recently wrote a bit of a rant about the quality control of some small presses whose books I had read.

If you are thinking of signing with a small publisher, then do bear a few things in mind.

Do your homework – start off by Googling the publisher. You might find threads on writing sites…

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Self-Editing Explained: How To Edit A Book Yourself [Guide] – by Karin Cox…

See this editor’s useful tips for self-editing with good examples.

Chris The Story Reading Ape's Blog

on David Gaughran site:

The topic of self-editing can spark confusion so I’ve invited along a professional editor — one I’ve worked with on multiple books — who will show you how to edit a book yourself. And this is exactly where we run into the first misconception about self-editing because it’s not a replacement for proper editing, but one of the stages of the editorial process.

Continue reading HERE

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Touch of Class Award

An artist from Maryland hand-paints each unique Touch of Class Award

Growing up as a horse lover in Maryland, I never imagined I would win an award like Maryland’s Touch of Class Award someday. The Touch of Class Award honors Maryland horses, individuals, teams, organizations, or events that demonstrate national or international excellence. The Maryland Horse Industry Board honored me and my second book, Believing In Horses, Too, for  our winning entry in the 2019 EQUUS Film and Arts Festival Literary Awards.

The Department of Agriculture’s Maryland Horse Industry Board (MHIB) Executive Director Ross Peddicord said, “We have so many talented artists in Maryland – writers, artists, filmmakers, photographers, and more – and Valerie is one of them.”

Valerie Ormond displaying awards leading up to the Touch of Class Award selection

The Board’s official announcement read, “Valerie Ormond’s second novel, Believing In Horses, Too, won a Gold Medal in the Military Writers Society of America Book Awards; 1st Place in The Authors’ Zone Book Awards; Best Y.A. Fiction in the Stroud Arts Book Festival; Best Book in Juvenile Fiction in the Pinnacle Book Achievement Awards, and Best Veterans Fiction in the EQUUS Film and Arts Festival Literary Award. Congratulations!”

Past winners of the Touch of Class award have been world champion Maryland horses, mules, and riders. Disciplines have included dressage, eventing, hunters, jumpers, jousting, steeplechase, polo, mounted shooting, rodeo, driving, pentathlon, polocrosse, endurance, therapy, and racing. Individual winners have been barn owners, facility managers, horse trainers, competitors, breeders, filmmakers, writers, and photographers. Maryland established the prestigious Touch of Class Awards program in September 2011.

The award is personally rewarding to me as I see my Believing In Horses books as a coalescence of my horse, military, research, and writing experiences. The Believing In Horses, Too fictional story is based in Maryland and highlights equine therapies, show competition, rescue horses, veterans, and military families. I appreciate the state of Maryland for supporting me and my work with this remarkable touch of class.

“Believing In Horses, Too” available at Amazon in Kindle or Paperback

How to Cultivate Writing Inspiration – by Melissa Donovan…

Sharing some good ideas here from Melissa Donovan. Get inspired!

Chris The Story Reading Ape's Blog

on Writing Forward:

Do you ever sit down to write only to discover hours later that you’ve done nothing but stare off into space with a blank look on your face, occasionally breaking from your stupor to notice that you haven’t written a single word?

I bet there have also been times when you were bursting with creativity — when you couldn’t get the words out of your head and onto the page (or screen) fast enough.

Don’t you wish writing could always be like that?

Creative writing requires skill, focus, and motivation. But is inspiration necessary? Can we write if we’re not inspired?

Continue reading HERE

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