Research–Then and Now

I started writing in the ‘80s. My first books were basically “Write what you know” books: teaching, Santa Barbara, Michigan, a farm community, and a local township supervisor who made me angry. I did do a little research: I talked to the local (female) banker about how the men in … Continue reading

IMAGE: Yours and your characters

Image: Yours and your characters Yesterday I participated in a fashion show for a local organization I belong to. Prior to the show, I put on makeup, including eye shadow, and polished my toenails. As I was doing so, I started thinking about image. In many ways, I think image … Continue reading

What I Learned at the NRA Convention

The main thing I learned is I’m not ready to own a gun. Through the Writers’ Police Academy, an MWA conference that included a special session at a shooting range, and a conceal carry class I took several years ago, I’ve been taught how to handle a gun. So there … Continue reading

Revisions

I didn’t write a blog last week because I was still on a cruise ship on Wednesday, sailing from Cozumel to Tampa. The cruise was wonderful. Five days of being treated like royalty…and being told there were wonderful bargains to be had, onboard and off. I did see a Goya … Continue reading

Name Your Genre

You’ve written a book and now it’s time to start thinking about selling it. Whether you send the manuscript off to an agent or an editor or decide to self-publish, you need to indicate the genre. That is, you need to let others know how it would be classified. “Why?” … Continue reading

Open Mic

I recently joined the Florida Writers Association ( http://www.floridawriters.net ) here in Florida. It’s a state-wide group, but it has several chapters, one meeting roughly 5 minutes away from my place. I have no idea how many writers belong to this chapter, but they meet twice a month and there … Continue reading

Do Unto Others…

I’ve always tried to live by the Golden Rule of “Do unto others as you would have done unto you.” Last week I read a book by Barry Eisler, and I started thinking of how important it is as a writer to always think about how you treat, talk to, … Continue reading

Letter from Richard Russo

Below you’ll find  a letter I received today from the Authors Guild. It included a request to share the letter with other writer friends. I decided to do so through my blog. I am a member of the Authors Guild. I’m not saying all writers need to join the Authors’ Guild … Continue reading

Count Your Blessings

I’m basically an optimist. I think that helps in the writing profession. Writers get so much criticism, most of us would probably quit if we weren’t optimists. We start with the notion that the stories running around in our heads are ones others would enjoy reading (or hearing). Optimism takes … Continue reading

Self-doubt

I’ve been depressed this week. I think it’s mainly due to the weather: too many cold, cloudy days. It’s time for me to head south. But more than the weather, I’ve been plagued by self-doubt and disappointment. A couple weeks ago I read a book that has been a finalist … Continue reading

Does a Vacation Lead to a Novel?

Several people have suggested that my recent trip to Ireland will lead to a new novel. Well, if you love novels set in Ireland, I’m afraid I’m going to disappoint you. I’ve discovered taking a cruise or a trip and then trying to write a story set either on a … Continue reading

9 Days in Ireland (aka: The Familymoon)

The good news is the bride and groom are still talking to each other…and to us (her parents and aunt, my husband and me). In fact, we’re already talking about another trip. Maybe to Scotland. There’s no way to summarize a nine-day trip to such a beautiful and historic country … Continue reading

Ireland, here I come!

Next week I’ll be in Ireland. I’ll be on a honeymoon. No, not mine but my son’s and his new wife’s. Her folks will also be along, as well as one of her aunts. Most people are taken aback when I tell them this, but evidently Family-moons and Buddy-moons (where the … Continue reading

Writing Can be Dangerous for Your Health

Over the years I’ve learned that sitting at a typewriter/computer isn’t one of the most dangerous jobs a person can have, but it does have drawbacks. My first introduction to this fact came while using a Royal portable typewriter, back in the ‘80s. I actually pounded my right thumb nail … Continue reading

Boating in Michigan

This will be a short blog. I just (within the last hour) returned from a boating trip that included over 400 miles (round trip) of driving (hubby did that) towing a twenty-five foot boat and 80 miles (round trip) of boating on three lakes (actually 4 lakes since we did … Continue reading