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Writing a Novel

Creativity Frozen? How to Start Writing Again After a Long Hiatus

Holly Robinson | Posted 02.07.2017 | Home
Holly Robinson

A confession: I stopped writing fiction for two months recently--the first time I have ever stumbled to a complete halt. Why? The usual reasons: 1....

An Alert, Well-Hydrated Artist in No Acute Distress--Episode Thirty-Five: The Birth of a Book, the End of a Story

Catherine Armsden | Posted 01.27.2017 | Arts
Catherine Armsden

A serial about two artists with incurable neurological disease sharing fear, frustration and friendship as they push to complete the most rewarding cr...

17 Years Without Television

Teresa Messineo | Posted 01.25.2017 | Parents
Teresa Messineo

The year was 2000 and we were in the middle of watching Harvey (the Jimmy Stewart classic with the six-foot rabbit) when our television made a strange...


Pamela Brill | Posted 12.02.2016 | Arts
Pamela Brill

I've always communicated better on paper than in person. I found writing to be an outlet and a haven, as well as a constant companion. When I couldn't...

Diriye Osman On Writing His Second Book

Diriye Osman | Posted 11.03.2016 | Queer Voices
Diriye Osman

(Diriye Osman is photographed by Astrid Haszprunarova) Dear reader, Three years ago, I published my debut collection of short stories, Fairytales fo...

A Desperate Plea From A Desperate Writer

Melissa Palmer | Posted 09.03.2016 | Arts
Melissa Palmer

Whether this sounds snarky or not it needs to be said, and I guess I'm going to be the one to say it. Please stop talking sh*t to writers.

Where Fantasy and Reality Collide: One Novelist's Happy Coincidences

Holly Robinson | Posted 08.23.2016 | Home
Holly Robinson

I came downstairs just as my husband returned from our local liquor store, where he'd gone to buy wine for dinner. He brandished a bottle of rum at me...

Think Small: More Time Does Not Equal Greater Productivity

Eva Lesko Natiello | Posted 08.22.2016 | Home
Eva Lesko Natiello

Think small and make use of what's available to you. I'm not saying, "You have to make time for it." I hate hearing that. (Especially as it relates to exercise...) Instead, take advantage of and be productive with whatever you have. There's no point in waiting for the perfect time to start writing or editing a novel. No such thing exists.

It's Not You Book, It's Me

Melissa Palmer | Posted 08.10.2016 | Arts
Melissa Palmer

There are days when I wish the book I was working on had a face, so I could punch it. It's true. And it's just part of the strange dance between lov...

How To Write Better Without Becoming A Better Writer

Matt Hearnden | Posted 06.29.2016 | GPS for the Soul
Matt Hearnden

Because I'm worrying much less about whether or not my work is good enough. It might be, and it might not be. It's just not worth the energy it takes to worry about it - especially when I could be putting that energy into the work.

If Writing Books Were Easy, Everyone Would Do It

Eva Lesko Natiello | Posted 06.01.2016 | Home
Eva Lesko Natiello

A debut novelist wrote to me the other day about his manuscript. I had first "met" this author a year ago through email. A friend of a friend. The email he sent me back then, I've received many times over, albeit from other writers.

5 Ways to Go From Hobby Writer to Pro

Jennifer Blanchard | Posted 04.13.2017 | Home
Jennifer Blanchard

If you've been a hobby writer for a while now (and I define "hobby writer" as a writer who hasn't made any money from her writing), and you think it's time to step up and go pro, here are five things you can do to begin the transition.

Harper Lee Through Grandma's Eyes

Kat Katsanis-Semel | Posted 02.22.2017 | Women
Kat Katsanis-Semel

In honor of Harper Lee, I call on all goofballs to take their talent to heart. You never know what could emerge from you, if you give it a sincere shot. And you might be so successful that someone will - one day - tell her grandchild about you.

How to Kill a Main Character Without Murdering Your Book

Holly Robinson | Posted 01.28.2017 | Home
Holly Robinson

One of the worst mistakes I ever made as a green novelist was to ignore the advice of editors and friends who told me certain manuscripts needed overhauling.

38 Best First Lines in Novels (YA Edition)

Mary Jane Hathaway | Posted 12.18.2016 | Home
Mary Jane Hathaway

All great authors know that a killer first line is almost more important than the first few pages, and authors put in hours of work just to get the right sentence on paper.

Watching a Novelist at Work

Eva Lesko Natiello | Posted 12.08.2016 | Home
Eva Lesko Natiello

I never thought about the writing process in terms of what it looks like. It's not pretty; at least not for me. Or exciting. For one, my clothes are shlumpy. I can't be productive when I'm dressed nicely. Secondly, it's very quiet (unless I'm editing--the bawling could get disorderly).

Finding Myself in a Book

Kelly Haworth | Posted 11.18.2016 | Queer Voices
Kelly Haworth

Writing this book let me express the emotions of trying to figure everything out -- the pain, the awkwardness and the strength -- and I emerged on the other side knowing that this pendulum inside me, this duality of male and female was exactly who I was.

National Novel Writing Month: My Experience With Temporary Neurosis

Ali Owens | Posted 11.09.2016 | Comedy
Ali Owens

I have long suspected I'm a cookie short of a dozen. I have always been vaguely aware that there's only a small distance between "whimsically creative" and "bat shit crazy" -- and that even at the best of times, crossing it would not be that much of a stretch for me.

NaNo NaNo

Ann Lewis Hamilton | Posted 10.29.2016 | Home
Ann Lewis Hamilton

Okay, so this year it'll be a dystopian tale set in Pittsburgh after an alien invasion. No, cancel that. A gentle coming of age story. 1950s, small town America. Wait, what about a man who wakes up, looks in the mirror, and - he's turned into a German shepherd.

Author Holly Robinson on Her Latest Book: Chance Harbor

Suzanne DeWitt Hall | Posted 10.13.2016 | Home
Suzanne DeWitt Hall

I've been blessed to become friends with a number of local authors, such as the generous and wickedly funny Holly Robinson. Holly's latest book came out October 6, and she was kind enough to take a few minutes to talk with me about it.

What Does it Mean to Be a 'Prolific' Writer?

Warren Adler | Posted 10.09.2016 | Home
Warren Adler

There has been an odd public discussion recently about writers, specifically novelists, who are too prolific, as if such abundance was a quality that diminished the nature and substance of the author's output.

5 Ways To Finish Your Passion Project (When Watching Netflix In Bed Seems Way More Appealing)

Laura Hankin | Posted 08.20.2016 | Women
Laura Hankin

Maybe you have lots of free time in which to work on your passion project. Maybe you have very little. Whatever amount you have, make it something you're excited about.

20/2 Clarity: I Dream of Living a Life Worth Writing About

Stella Mowen | Posted 07.18.2016 | Healthy Living
Stella Mowen

I hope a day may come when you decide to hold onto that happiness longer. And instead of tucking the dream back in your pocket, you release it out to the world. It is then, in this moment that the fun begins.

5 Rituals and Routines That Changed My Writing Life

Jennifer Blanchard | Posted 07.06.2016 | Home
Jennifer Blanchard

Being a writer is a challenging creative pursuit, because as writers, we spend a lot of time alone, in our heads. And for the longest time writers have been told they should write "when they feel inspired."

Authors and Obsessive Themes

Randy Susan Meyers | Posted 07.01.2016 | Home
Randy Susan Meyers

Writers often don't recognize their own embedded themes until after writing "the end"--and sometimes not even then. True revelations are often handed to us by reviewers, book clubs, and Goodreads. Only by looking back do we recognize our sore spots and consistent curiosity.