Writing Tips

writing plan

Making a Living Writing

There are some dilemmas that twist and tear at you in the depths of night. To choose this career or that one? To marry this person or wait? To stick with a bad job or face a volatile job market? Then there is the dilemma that rips at the heart of…

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academic writing

From School to the Real World

It took me a good eight years before I shuffled off the chains of academic writing. Make no mistake: the way they teach you to write in school will hamper you in the real world. In academia, you get rewarded for obscurity, density, paragraphs and sentences that stretch on in…

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author website

The Author Website

These days, every author needs a website. It's the best way to connect with fans and potential readers. A website can make your readers feel a personal connection to you, invite them to delve deeper into your books, and sell them on your future work. Some authors are still operating…

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simple writing

Deceptively Simple Writing

Writing should look easy. I saw a poet give a reading last Wednesday night. His poems told simple stories about his upbringing in an English boarding school. The audience (white-haired like him) laughed and nodded their heads and remembered things they'd long forgotten. When it came time for questions, the…

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The Writing Process

A hand writes on a sheet of notebook paper. The author watches. The author watches the hand - his hand? - as it scrawls in that familiar handwriting, words upon words, line after line, staining fingertips blacker and blacker with ink. He sees the deep wrinkles of the knuckles, the…

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Reconsidering Copyright

Steve Pavlina famously blogs about "Personal Development for Smart People." He is always pushing himself to the limits in his attempt to discover ways to enhance his productivity, efficiency, and money flow. His blog is what he makes his living from. Which is why his latest idea seemed like one…

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published author

Find the Courage to Write

It's not easy to put your thoughts down on paper in the hope that someone will want to read them. The world is flush with words already. There are newspapers, magazines and books published every day. A cursory scan of the millions of personal blogs online reveals that everyone has…

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am writing

A Writer’s Excuses

Writers have a lot of excuses that keep them from writing. When I was little, I imagined that creative people just couldn't stop creating.  They were driven by their passion to express their art whenever and wherever they could.  If they had to work 9 to 5 jobs, they came…

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reading books

Does Reading Help Your Writing?

If there's one piece of advice that all established authors give to newbies, it's this: Read as much as you can. Reading books helps you develop an ear for language and shows you the possibilities of new techniques. Finding an author that inspires you is like crack for writers: every time…

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creative writing class

7 Tips You Won’t Find in Creative Writing Class

I took writing courses as an undergraduate and earned an M.A. in writing. Even got a distinction. Such a waste of time. After writing for a living for the past decade, I have mixed feelings about academia's role in producing the next crop of writers. My studies made me a…

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