Category Archives: Writing

Networking Is Always a Good Thing

I asked Andy Heller, a professional photographer (, to Take pictures of My quilts that I had made to illustrate an up-coming book. He’s a Class act! Andy is part of my chamber network group. I Take the mission of our group to heart. It is My feeling that groups like this are in a Class by themselves. No matter where you live and work, find a chamber group. Networking with friends and trusted advisers is always a good thing. Whether you are writing your first book Read more [...]

Book Writing Timeline

When my advanced students asked me for a timeline for writing a book, I gave it a lot of thought. Naturally, when it comes to writing, each author writes at their own pace. However, like I said...I gave it a lot of thought. There is pretty much a range of time for each of the processes that your go through to write, edit, format, publish, and market your book. Because each book that you write is your pride and joy, much like giving birth, you want it to be "perfect." Well, "perfect" needs to turn Read more [...]

What Do You Want to Know about Children’s Book Illustrations?

You wrote the story or stories, but now you need an illustrator. You know exactly what you want, but you don’t have the expertise to create it yourself…or DO YOU?   I had a collection of stories that I had completed writing about seven years ago. I’ve worked more on the stories during that time, but the real hang up has been finding an illustrator. I found several over the years. They would deliver one illustration and then they sort of dropped off the face of the earth! So then, Read more [...]

How to Hone Your Writing with a Critique Group

By Gina Akao 7/12/13 Guest Post Are you looking for a sure-fire way to become a better writer? Join a critique group! Here is a brief list of benefits you will gain: If your critique group meets regularly (such as every two weeks like mine), you will write more often, and more consistently You will learn how to give and receive constructive criticism You will have free access to excellent proofreaders You will receive encouragement when you are down You will avoid writer’s block Read more [...]

Abundance and Writing

It is a mindset of “abundance” that we normally hear discussed. Abundant thinking helps us become more successful business people or experience successful careers. When we come to “abundance,” we no longer see diminished capacity or limiting thoughts. Therefore, when we speak of abundance for our writing, we become aware of an infinite wellspring of creativity that allows us to write from a place of abundance. If you sit down at your computer with the thought of having abundance, your Read more [...]

Foreshadowing and Breadcrumbs

When writing fiction, in particular, and sometimes real life stories, the art of foreshadowing can pull the reader through your story. You want to pull your reader through your entire book, because then, your reader will have read your whole book. Foreshadowing Definition—To present an indication or suggestion beforehand or to foretell an event before it happens. For example: On a dark, and stormy night, the girl shivered under her covers. This is somewhat of a cliché opening for many novels. Read more [...]

How to Write a Good Hook

A good hook not only intrigues us and peaks our interest but also frustrates and gives you a sense of urgency that causes you to read further. According to Writer’s Digest, this is a simple formula. “Create the stakes (and the suspense) in your story. Show your reader something she wants, and then threaten it.”   A good example would be: The elderly woman now on oxygen answered the phone to a Jaimacan-speaking man telling her she had won 10 million dollars. Miss Ida Mae and her Read more [...]

Questions for Building a Fantasy World

Does this world resemble Earth? Do the laws of nature and physics differ in this world? Is magic present in this world? How do you know? What part does magic play in this world? What do the people look like in this world? Do they look like humans, elves or dwarfs? What is the culture and ethnic diversity in this world? How old is this world? Did the people of this world evolve or did they come from another world…where? Are there a lot of people in this world? What sort of villages, Read more [...]

The Writer’s Platform

No, a Writer’s Platform is not the kind of platform that you stand upon, at least, not literally. Let’s take the image of a platform, stage, podium, dais, or display raised area and think about it more metaphorically. The Writer’s Platform is basically all the things you are doing to market yourself. These days, you call it your brand. Everything you do should be to build your brand. I know, I know, I’m talking about you as the brand. How can you sell yourself as a writer, isn’t it enough Read more [...]

Writing for Young Adults

Writing Irrisitible Kidlit by Mary Kole from Writer’s Digest Books ( discusses everything from target audience to. To write for the young adult reader, Kole writes, “Remember the electricity of adolescence? You have your first love, your first seriously bad decision, your first moment of profound pride, the first time you’re a hero.” Young adults (YA) like most genres. Fantasy is big with the YA market, but so is romance. One of the biggest errors that writers who want Read more [...]