Personal editing. Professional results.
December 29, 2023
Wants vs. needs for characters

  A character knows about what they want. They are unaware of what they need. That want is external. Anna wants to gain control over her life's choices: relationships, work, pleasure. Even choosing which others she will serve. At the start of the twentieth century, that control was beyond a woman's reach — an unprivileged […]

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December 29, 2023
Marketing with your telephone poles

  I'm from the generation that used landlines as our first phones. In my Toledo hometown, telephone poles were a big part of our community. They were everywhere because we needed them to carry information. The poles got used for a lot more than that. Enterprising people reeled in customers via the phone poles, and […]

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December 29, 2023
What AI ain't

  Classes will teach writers how to prompt a software program. $89 later, there will be hundreds more writers using AI. Prompt writing, and then revisions to prompts. Then AI output revisions, once you get to a certain point, a moment that you choose. It's all writing, revision, and more revision. Why shouldn't you use […]

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December 29, 2023
Researching, versus write what you know

  Old advice tells authors you should write what you know. How else can your writing be authentic and accurate unless you know the details? Well, writing what you don't know can be better advice for fiction authors. While you're learning about your subject, your research makes the writing come alive. Nonfiction writers know the […]

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December 29, 2023
To win, just do stuff

Just put stuff on the wall, at first Dan Blank is a great resource for creativity and media connection. His company We Grow Media engages authors who can invest several thousand dollars a month in publicity services. (Remember, publicity is PR and it is not marketing. You earn publicity coverage.) But alongside his thousands a […]

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December 29, 2023
How to write faster

  Creating a book can be slow work for some of us. A few hundred words a day will make a book in a year even if you take the weekends off. You need to rewrite, though, so upping your output to allow for revisions might erase your frustrations. Journalists practice habits that can serve […]

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December 29, 2023
AI can only make books different

You'd have to be living under a rock to miss the rise of the AI writer. We can't call software an author, but software can write. Actually, it can rewrite, cleaning up writing in what at first looks like revisions. Today's AI is delivering something that looks as much like creations as a photo of […]

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December 29, 2023
How Memoirs Make Meaning

Memoir is writing based on just a portion of our life, a part filled with meaning that a reader can grab for their own. Understanding, compassion, inspiration, education, empathy; we can get any of those from a memoir. Memoir is also writing that uses the skills of a novelist, so the forms are similar in […]

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December 29, 2023
Write like a kid again

At the eye doctor this morning, the technician who examined me had a literature degree. "This is what an English lit degree gets you," she said with a wry smile, waving around the room. "I do this." We both laughed, because we were talking about editing. You tell the eye doctor what you do for […]

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December 29, 2023
Buy beta reads, or a development edit?

  For the author who's looking at a full draft, ready to do more work on it, beta reading can help a book evolve. It can be vexing to find beta readers whose insights are useful. I told the authors in my monthly manuscript groups that for every four commenters at our table, probably one […]

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