Monthly Archives: April 2014

Making sandwiches

How is learning to write like learning how to make sandwiches? Find out in this great blog post. 🙂

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Helpful Online Writing Resources

Hello again, Kelly here.  Well, not much to report yet on the writing front, so I thought I’d talk about some helpful writing resources I’ve used online in my years of learning about writing.  Some you may be aware of already, but some may be new to you.  So, here we go…


Online Mentors

– Holly Lisle

Hers is one of the first websites I found when I started learning about writing years ago.  She’s published many novels (Arhel trilogy, Cadence Drake series, among others) and has been a full-time author for years.  She is very passionate about writing and about helping others to succeed at writing.

I’ve purchased a few of her writing books (Create a Plot Clinic, Create A Character Clinic) and have found them very helpful.  She has other big writing courses (How to Think Sideways, How to Write a Series, How to Revise Your Novel) that sound great, however I haven’t had the time or extra money to invest in.  Someday.  Here’s a link to her website Hollylise.com or you can follow her on Twitter (@hollylisle).

– K.M. Weiland

I found out about her earlier this year via her podcast (Helping Writers Become Authors).  She is a published author (Dreamlander, Behold the Dawn), but also mentors other writers on her website www.helpingwritersbecomeauthors.com, which was recently named one of Writer’s Digest’s 101 Best Websites For Writers.  Congrats!

I have purchased a couple of her writing books (Structuring Your Novel, Outlining Your Novel).  Let me just say, her book Structuring Your Novel helped me so much to get a grasp on the three-act structure.  It lays out not only novel structure, but also scene structure and sentence structure.  Give it a read, it’s really good.  You can also follow her on Twitter (@kmweiland).

Writing Podcasts

This past year or so, I’ve become a podcast junkie.  Mostly, I listen to podcasts about TV shows I enjoy, but I also listen to a couple writing podcasts.

– Writing Excuses

I’m sure most of you have heard of the Writing Excuses podcast.  It’s a long-time running weekly podcast by well-known authors Brandon Sanderson, Mary Robinette Kowal, Dan Wells, and cartoonist/author Howard Taylor.  Their humor, insight, and experience makes for a very entertaining listen.  The episodes are short (15-20 minutes) so you can catch up several at a time.  All of their episodes are available on their website www.writingexcuses.com.  You can also subscribe to the podcast on iTunes and you can also follow them on Twitter (@WritingExcuses).

– Helping Writers Become Authors

The aforementioned podcast of K.M. Weiland.  You can find her podcast episodes on her website (see link above) and subscribe to it on iTunes.

– The Narrative Breakdown

A podcast by James Monahan.  He (and frequent co-host Cheryl Klein) interviews authors, screenwriters and others about topics helpful to creative writers and screenwriters.  The most recent episode was an interview with Gwen Hernandez, author of Scrivener For Dummies.  By the way, I really want to check out that book when I get a chance, because I haven’t been able to make heads or tails of Scrivener on my own. 🙂  Anyway, you can find this podcast at www.narrativebreakdown.com, subscribe to it on iTunes, and you can follow them at Twitter (@NarrativeBreak).

– The Creative Penn

This one I just started listening to this week.  It is produced by author and entrepreneur Joanna Penn and sponsored by Kobo Writing Life.  She is a delightful host who interviews authors and others in the writing industry and deals mostly with the business side of writing (publishing options and marketing).  I’ve only listened to a few episodes so far and am enjoying it very much.  I’ll definitely keep listening.  You can find the podcast episodes at her website www.thecreativepenn.com, subscribe to it on iTunes, and you can follow Joanna at Twitter (@thecreativepenn).

Online Writing Communities

I’ve been a member of a few writing communities in the past:  Forward Motion for Writers (www.fmwriters.com), Writer’s Cafe (www.writerscafe.org), and Writing Forums (www.writingforums.com), but the main one I’ve frequented the past few years is Mythic Scribes.

– Mythic Scribes

This is a mainly a community for fantasy writers, but writers of any kind will find it very useful.  You can participate in the forums and find writing topics such as: Writing Questions, Writing Resources, World Building, and Showcase (where you can post your writing and receive critiques if you wish), marketing topics such as:  Publishing, Marketing, and Cover Design, and topics for fans of fantasy media:  Fantasy Art, Novels & Stories, Films/TV Shows, etc.  Mythic Scribes also has a online newsletter you can subscribe to, as well as helpful articles posted on their front page with topics dealing with characters, plot, self-publishing. etc.

There are a lot of great people in this very active community.  They are very welcoming of new members.  This website is a must for any aspiring fantasy authors or authors of other genres who enjoy fantasy as well.  Check them out at mythicscribes.com and you can follow them on Twitter (@mythicscribes).

Writing/Writer’s Blogs

I also read many blogs about writing or by writers.  Too many to list here.  To the right of this page, you will see a list of current blogs I’m following here on WordPress.  Some others I read are on writing/writer’s websites, or on other blogging websites.


Well I think that’s about it for now.  Note: most of the websites, podcasts, authors, etc. I’ve listed above also have Facebook pages, but I was too lazy to look them all up. 🙂  I hope you’ve found this information interesting and maybe you might want to check out any of these resources you were not familiar with previously.  Also, feel free to list any other websites, podcasts, blogs, etc. that you follow or subscribe to in the comment section.  You can never get too much information about writing.  Thanks for reading!


Current writing goals:

  • This week:  Get something done!  I haven’t done a whole lot on my writing this past week.  I’ve been mostly playing with my new toy (Twitter) and obsessing about what I would do for this blog post.
  • By the end of next month:  I still need to at least get a rough outline done.  It’s easy to think up a premise for a story, it’s quite hard though to turn that into a whole plot!

What I’m currently reading:

  • The Hero of Ages by Brandon Sanderson

 

Happy Easter

Image by geri-jean at http://www.freeimages.com

Just a quick post to wish everyone a Happy Easter!  Enjoy the egg hunting and chocolate bunnies!  🙂

~KellyB

Greetings!

I guess I should start by introducing myself.  Hi, my name is Kelly and I’m a wanna-be author (emphasis on the wanna-be).

I’ve been spending the last several years trying to write a book with no success.  Strike that, I wouldn’t say no success.  All of the hours I’ve spent reading books and articles about writing, listening to podcasts about writing, frequenting forums about writing, etc. have definitely helped me to learn what goes into making a good story.  It’s just putting that into actual written words that I’m having a problem with.  I would have to say that the biggest obstacles in my way would be my horrible habits of procrastination and perfectionism.  I will come up with a premise for a story, sit down and write maybe two or three thousand words, and then convince myself that it’s the worst garbage ever written and then delete it and vow to write again later.  Though, I will say that each attempt gets better and better.  So that’s something.

I think another problem I have, is that I have no accountability.  I hide my writing from everyone, don’t make goals for myself (that’s not entirely true though, in 2013 I made a resolution to complete a first draft that year–obviously that never happened, and also last year, I planned to participate in NaNoWriMo but never got past about 1,500 words before I quit about four or five days into it).  So, that’s part of the reason why I’ve created this blog–to share my progress, but also to share with other aspiring authors things that I’ve discovered along the way (interesting articles and books about writing, online resources, etc.)

I have no set schedule on how often I will write new posts, but I would like to try to post at least once a week.  I will also tweet links to my blog posts on my brand new Twitter account (@K_Beam if you would like to follow me).

Well, that’s about it for now.  Thanks for reading!

~Kelly


Current writing goals:

  • This week:  Decide which story idea to work on – DONE (it involves an alternate reality)
  • By the end of the month:  Start work on a rough outline and flesh out the main characters

What I’m currently reading:

  • The Hero of Ages by Brandon Sanderson