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Writing a Novel

Biography: The Falsest Art?

Joe Woodward | Posted 05.25.2011 | Books
Joe Woodward

I've come to believe that what makes the biography of a writer crackle and pop is knowing as many lies as truths -- the lies they told to others, the lies others told of them, and, most importantly, the lies they told themselves.

The Making of a Novel: The Passage of Time

Jennie Nash | Posted 05.25.2011 | Books
Jennie Nash

I just got some very good news: my agent likes my new book idea! Woo hoo!! But -- isn't there always a but? -- she had a very excellent question about...

The Making of a Novel: My Pages, Myself

Jennie Nash | Posted 05.25.2011 | Books
Jennie Nash

I just sent 37 pages of my new novel to my agent. I didn't plan on doing it. I just...did. I just woke up and blasted an email, and now the pages are ...

The Making of a Novel: A Simple Solution for Overusing Certain Words

Jennie Nash | Posted 05.25.2011 | Books
Jennie Nash

The other day, in an LA Times Op-Ed piece entitled Amazing No More, writer/reporter Michael Krikorian argued that the word "amazing" has become so ove...

The Making of a Novel: What If?

Jennie Nash | Posted 05.25.2011 | Books
Jennie Nash

I teach a course in writing memoir, which began today. I love memoir -- as a writer, a reader, and a teacher -- and find many joys in it, on many lev...

The Making of a Novel: Writing in the Shower

Jennie Nash | Posted 05.25.2011 | Books
Jennie Nash

I have the luxury of working at home most of the time (although I start a classroom stint next week with the UCLA Extension Writers' Program) and I co...

The Making of a Novel: The Temptation of Jumping Ahead

Jennie Nash | Posted 05.25.2011 | Books
Jennie Nash

I was tempted today to jump ahead in my story and write a juicy scene or two that will come later in the novel. The section I was working on felt a li...

The Making of a Novel: Cultural Fact-Finding

Jennie Nash | Posted 05.25.2011 | Books
Jennie Nash

Some of the action of my new novel takes place in 1948, 1955 and 1961. I know the broad strokes of history for those period of time (and if I don't, m...

The Making of a Novel: Walking and Talking

Jennie Nash | Posted 05.25.2011 | Books
Jennie Nash

I often walk with friends from my neighborhood or my kid's school. We meet in the morning right after we drop off kids, and walk for an hour or more, ...

The Making of a Novel: My Characters' Religion

Jennie Nash | Posted 05.25.2011 | Books
Jennie Nash

I've spent all day re-working one page of dialogue. Two characters are speaking to each other upon the death of a man they have both loved. In order t...

Author Myth: Nothing New

Arielle Ford | Posted 05.25.2011 | Books
Arielle Ford

To not write something that is kicking and screaming to get out of you because you think it has already been done is a huge mistake.

The Making of a Novel: Inspiration is Overrated

Jennie Nash | Posted 05.25.2011 | Books
Jennie Nash

A week or so ago, I scratched one book idea and 50 pages, and brought a different book idea off the back burner and onto a front burner. I thought of ...

The Making of a Novel: Chapter Endings

Jennie Nash | Posted 05.25.2011 | Books
Jennie Nash

My goal for the week is to write one solid chapter. It's the first chapter -- at least at the moment. I had several false starts, and then got into a ...

The Making of a Novel: Snail's Pace Race

Jennie Nash | Posted 05.25.2011 | Books
Jennie Nash

Yesterday, at a lovely book event at the home of Terry Gilman, owner of the Mysterious Galaxy bookstore in San Diego, I participated in an event called "author speed dating."

The Making of a Novel: Is This a Business?

Jennie Nash | Posted 05.25.2011 | Books
Jennie Nash

A reader made a comment a few days ago about the business of being a writer, and it got me thinking about how unusual it is for most writers -- myself...

The Making of a Novel: Nature Abhors a Vacuum

Jennie Nash | Posted 05.25.2011 | Books
Jennie Nash

I wrote like a crazy person today -- new pages, new ideas, new thoughts. It's a wild and wonderful feeling, in a way. I have no idea where I'm going, ...

The Making of a Novel: There's Always Another Story to Tell

Jennie Nash | Posted 05.25.2011 | Books
Jennie Nash

I visited another book club last night -- a group of super savvy women who had read The Threadbare Heart. They happened to gather in a clubhouse (the ...

Stuck In A Moment

The Guardian | Posted 05.25.2011 | Books

Not that it's anything new, or groundbreaking, or revolutionary -- we can all cite lists of authors from the past who chose to express themselves in t...

The Making of a Novel: Gut Punched

Jennie Nash | Posted 05.25.2011 | Books
Jennie Nash

I set out to chronicle the making of a novel, and that novel might not be made right now. But I suppose this is part of the process, too -- letting go, finding a way to change course mid-stream.

New York Times Says Best Novelists Are in 20s And 30s

Randy Susan Meyers | Posted 05.25.2011 | Books
Randy Susan Meyers

I tried to resist writing this -- especially after my plea against categorizing authors. Plus, so many of us hide our age in this world of never-get-...

The Making of a Novel: How to Stay Motivated When the Economy Stinks and the World of Publishing is Changing by the Hour

Jennie Nash | Posted 05.25.2011 | Books
Jennie Nash

I was invited to give a talk tomorrow to the Orange County Romance Writers' Association. When the asked me to visit, they asked if I wanted to talk ab...

The Making of a Novel: Making Dialogue Matter

Jennie Nash | Posted 05.25.2011 | Books
Jennie Nash

I was writing dialogue today. I was zipping along, feeling pretty good about things, when I suddenly realized that nothing was happening. My character...

The Making of a Novel: Trusting Your Past Self

Jennie Nash | Posted 05.25.2011 | Books
Jennie Nash

My kids are both fans of the TV show, "How I Met Your Mother," and so I have become a fan of it myself. It's clever, funny and well written, and it's ...

The Making of a Novel: Calling in the Experts

Jennie Nash | Posted 05.25.2011 | Books
Jennie Nash

Readers sometimes ask me how I write about things I don't have personal experience doing -- such as taking photographs or sewing dresses or playing the violin. This is how.

The Making of a Novel: Bringing Fiction to Life, One Thread at a Time

Jennie Nash | Posted 05.25.2011 | Books
Jennie Nash

For my last novel, The Threadbare Heart, I had the great good fortune to arrange a nationwide contest in conjunction with Keepsake Quilting, one of th...