A goal 10 times bigger than what feels achievable is a psychological kick in the pants that gives you the motivation to achieve liftoff and sustain effort.
The science suggests that repetition can make a new practice reach the “second nature” part of your brain sooner, creating a habit that’s hard to break.
In this Q&A, Hill discusses why he wanted his memoir to incorporate the observations and life experiences of other Canadians of mixed racial heritage.
This post explains four critical types of book editing, why you need an editor, how to choose one, and what your editor can and cannot do.
Your friends and fans want to celebrate with you. When public gatherings aren’t an option, you can take the party online at virtually no cost.
Employing the science of captivating rewards is one way to keep yourself excited about and engaged with a big writing project, all the way to The End.
Your protagonist must directly influence or engineer her own destiny. If she doesn’t, she isn’t the hero; she’s a passenger in the story.
Learn how to craft a strong novel synopsis, while avoiding the most common mistakes, including the dreaded “synopsis speak.”
For first impressions to occur as quickly on the page as in person, try this basic foundation to help readers achieve familiarity with your characters.
In some ways, the idea behind neurohacks is simple: Fake it till you make it. Or, fake it until it feels real, because your brain can’t tell the difference.
For some, the most intimidating part of writing a novel is the plotting. Here’s one way: Puzzle-Piece the story together from details you already know.
How authors can blog successfully for long-term platform and book marketing efforts, with tips for online writing, strong headlines, and good SEO.
Many dream of publishing a book, but actually sitting down to write one seems hard. Preparation and limiting your choices can make writing feel easier.
Past perfect is less common in the internet era, but isn’t just a formality. Without it, readers are ever so slightly more adrift in your ocean of words.
Because an anthology includes many authors, it can connect to the fan bases of all those authors and ultimately be greater than the sum of its parts.
A lot of the people who genuinely want to write a book never do so, because they never find a reason to prioritize their writing practice.
Too much free time can actually hinder momentum. That’s why it can be useful to focus on small challenges, always aiming just beyond your comfort level.
Don’t feel like you have to go it alone—others are on the same journey, ready to offer encouragement and applaud your hard-earned victories.
Everything you need to know to start sending an effective email newsletter.
In Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, the top rung is where creativity happens—after our sustenance and security are met. Many of us are just not there, yet.
Studies show that making meaningful progress toward big goals is best served by focusing on the small steps that will get us there.
Developmental editors, critique partners, sensitivity readers, friends—feedback comes from different people, for different reasons, at different times.
A book publishing–focused newsfeed gathers headlines from across the industry; it is free to all and continuously updated and maintained by Jane Friedman.
Small presses are their own ecosystem. To understand the landscape, study the review sites, awards, and distributors catering specifically to that market.
You can get your readers behind a character they don’t want to grab a beer with—if you allow enough humanity to show through.
We’re often told to read the best books first and apply their lessons to our own work. Here’s a wrinkle: Books you don’t like can be great teachers too.
Everything authors need to know about the audiobook market, including retailers, distributors, and payments.
When used properly, flashbacks can be illuminating. When used haphazardly, they detract from the narrative and leave the reader confused (or worse, bored).
I strongly advocate all authors start and maintain a website as part of their long-term marketing efforts and ongoing platform development. But it’s an intimidating project because so few authors have been in a position to create, manage, or oversee websites. Where do you even begin?
The human condition in its alienation, pain, and joy yearns for a faithful scribe. Memoir offers readers that ultimate safe harbor: the knowledge that they are not alone.
You’ve got something that corporate brands don’t—yourself. Nurture a relationship with your readers, and they’ll do the marketing for you.
Is your reader being told a story, or experiencing it by your protagonist’s side? When revising your novel, here are four important red flags to look for.
Unless you’re a celebrity, your expertise in a field may not be enough to interest publishers. A partner can increase your book’s credibility and reach.
A big mistake authors make is assuming that the influencer needs to read a copy of the book—or have a copy—in order to support it. Not true.
Here’s what I’ve learned over 20 years about making the most of any writers conference, whether you’re an attendee or a speaker.
If there’s an organization whose mission aligns with your story or characters, a partnership might help both parties promote one another.
Here’s a System and Template for Tracking Your Submissions (Bonus: It Reduces the Sting of Rejection)
You can’t control rejections, but you can control your next steps. Staying organized and focused helps isolate and minimize the impact of any one rejection.
The query letter has one purpose, and one purpose only: to seduce the agent or editor into reading or requesting your work. The query letter is so much of a sales piece that it’s quite possible to write one without having written a word of the manuscript. All it requires is a firm grasp of your story premise.
No two publishing paths are the same. When choosing an agent, find someone you can stand strong with, whether lashed to the mast or gliding in calm waters.
A book is often the product of teamwork. The ability to revise—to accept feedback and apply it with diligence and insight—is essential to success.
Book coaching is much more than editorial support. Coaches help clients complete a transformation—from someone who wants to write a book into someone who has created a book they are proud of.
While it’s not wrong to open in these ways—and a great writer can make even the most pedestrian series of events read as fascinating—consider if you can find a more advantageous way to begin.
In this Q&A, literary agents Jim McCarthy and Paula Munier discuss the priorities and responsibilities—to yourself and to others—of being a working writer.
In conversation we describe dialogue simply—”She said,” “He asked”—but writing enables a broader palette. How do we decide which words to use, or not use?
My favorite digital media tools that have enhanced my productivity and creativity as a teacher, author, and entrepreneur.
It may be on the wane for reasons ranging from linguistic evolution to feminism, but one writer says exclamation point usage is a simple kindness.
Like trying to outrun a semi bearing down in your rear-view mirror, writing serially for release in real-time can be both exhilarating and exhausting.
The point of line edits isn’t to say, “My way is better!”, but to give a fellow author the gift of a fresh pair of eyes and ears and alternatives to reflect upon.
In this interview, Bob Eckstein discusses art vs. commerce, newspaper/magazine cartoons vs. TV as communication delivery systems, the influence of just the right validation, and much more.
In this interview, she discusses discovering writing in mid-life, how she knew when her writing was ready, why she opted to self-publish, and much more.