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This week’s top writing advice from around the web for Jul. 17

By Maria Korolov
(Illustration by Maria Korolov based on image via Pixabay.)

I subscribe to dozens of writing advice sites and new advice articles come into my news reader at a steady pace. You can see some of my favorites at my Writing Advice Sites resource page.

Here are the best writing advice posts from this previous week. Occasionally I include an RSS feed. To subscribe to an RSS feed, add the feed URL to your RSS reader app. The most popular is Feedly, which is the one that I use. It has a website and mobile apps, and it keeps track of which articles you’ve read, synched across all your devices.

You can see all the previous writing advice of the week posts here and subscribe to the RSS feed for this writing advice series here (direct Feedly signup link).

This week, I’ve decided to divide the list into three categories.

The first, for the beginning writer, is about getting the writing process down. Finding time to write, discovering your own writing rituals, learning how to overcome your inner critics, fighting writer’s block, and how to finish what you start. Experienced writers sometimes hit these speedbumps as well, but they can kill a career for a new writer before it even starts.

Second, for the writer who’s already started getting the hang of the mechanics of getting the words down on paper, is improving the quality of the writing. Of course, you can’t improve writing if you don’t have any to improve, so the previous step is critical. But once you’re getting words down, you can start asking yourself if they’re the right words, or maybe you can find better words. And you can even start thinking about sentences, paragraphs, scenes, chapters, plots, character arcs — all that stuff that goes into writing readable work. And even experienced writers probably have areas where they can improve, or new things to learn.

Finally, for the writer who’s finished stories or books that are ready for the public, there’s the question of finding your publishing platform, producing the actual book, finding copyeditors and cover artists, marketing, and advertising. For beginning writers these are mostly theoretical questions, but for experienced writers, they are critical for success. And the answers keep changing as the industry changes, so staying on top of things is critical.

So here we go.

Productivity, mood management, and battling the demons inside

Are You Absent From Your Own Story? by Janna Lopez

There are lots of reasons why you might avoid painful truths in your writing. If you want your story to resonate, you may need to face them. Janna Lopez is an intuitive book coach, creative writing teacher with a MFA, and published author. She leads creative writing retreats for individuals and small groups in Santa Fe, New Mexico, through Land of Enchantment Writing. BookBaby bills itself as the nation’s leading self-publishing services company. For more advice like this, subscribe to their RSS feed (directly Feedly link here), or follow them on Facebook at @BookBaby or on Twitter at @BookBaby.

Get To Know Your Muse by Anne Janzer

This post offers a quiz you can take to find out the personality type of your personal muse. Anne Janzer is an award-winning author, armchair cognitive science geek, nonfiction author coach, marketing practitioner, and blogger. Follow her on Facebook at @AnneHJanzer or on Twitter at @AnneJanzer. At AnneJanzer.com, Janzer offers writing and publishing advice. For more like this, subscribe to the site’s RSS feed (directly Feedly link here).

Other motivational advice this week:

The art and craft of writing

Clearing Up Some Misconceptions About In Medias Res by K. M. Weiland

One of the most significant challenges for writers is crafting a beginning chapter that immediately grabs readers. Most commonly, writers are advised to accomplish this via two different methods: the hook and the technique of beginning in the middle of things.
K. M. Weiland is one of my favorite writing advice people, and the award-winning author of acclaimed writing guides such as Structuring Your Novel and Creating Character Arcs. If you want more advice like this, subscribe to her blog, Helping Writers Become Authorsvia its RSS feed (direct Feedly signup link). You can also follow her on Twitter @KMWeiland and on Facebook @kmweiland.author. Helping Writers Become Authors is one of our favorite writing advice sites. Follow it via its RSS feed (direct Feedly signup link), on Twitter, and on Facebook.

Character Backstory And Memory: Definitions And When To Use Each by J. D. Edwin

The choices your characters make within your story are shaped by their past, which means sometimes you’ll need to communicate to your reader events that happened before your story began. Not sure how? Try memory or backstory to share the past in the present. J.D. Edwin is a sci-fi author. Follow Edwin on Facebook @JDEdwinAuthor, and on Twitter @JDEdwinAuthor. Her website is JDEdwin.com. The Write Practice is an advice site from a group of writers. They also have a writing critique community and a newsletter. Follow The Write Practice on Twitter, on Facebook, or subscribe to their RSS feed (direct Feedly signup link).

Sense Sensibilities by Sophia Hansen

Instead of telling us that “Mama’s stew smelled delicious,” make your reader’s mouth water. Sophia L Hansen is an author and editor with Havok Publishing. For more about her writing, visit SophiaLHansen.com or follow her on Facebook at @Sophia L Hansen. Almost an Author offers writing and publishing advice. For more this this, follow them on Twitter at @A3writers, on Facebook at @A3writers and subscribe to their RSS feed here (direct Feedly signup link).

Beyond Character Goal And Motivation—The Longing And The Lack by Tiffany Yates Martin

Figuring out why your characters do what they do can be some of the hardest work of writing, and a common area where stories fall short. Tiffany Yates Martin has spent nearly thirty years as an editor in the publishing industry, working with major publishers and New York Times, Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, and USA Today bestselling and award-winning authors as well as indie and newer writers, and is the founder of FoxPrint Editorial and author of the bestseller Intuitive Editing: A Creative and Practical Guide to Revising Your Writing. FoxPrint Editorial offers online courses, workshops and presentations, and advice to authors.

Other writing advice this week:

The business side of writing

Writer’s Digest’s Best Publishing News And Resource Websites 2022 by Writers Digest Staff

Here are the top publishing news and resource websites as identified in the 24th Annual 101 Best Websites from the May/June 2022 issue of Writer’s Digest. Follow Writer’s Digest via their RSS feed (direct Feedly signup link), on Twitter at @WritersDigest and on Facebook at @writersdigest.

Wordtune Review: Description, Pricing, Pros And Cons by Dave Chesson

Wordtune is an AI-based software that is designed to help you rewrite sentences to (hopefully) improve them. Dave Chesson is the founder of Kindlepreneur which is pretty much the top site out there for self-published authors who want to sell more e-books on Amazon. The RSS feed is here (direct Feedly signup link). Follow them on Facebook at @KindlePreneur and Chesson himself on Twitter at @DaveChesson. And make sure to subscribe to his podcast, The Book Marketing Show. Kindlepreneur is pretty much the top site out there for self-published authors who want to sell more e-books on Amazon. The RSS feed is here (direct Feedly signup link). Follow them on Facebook at @KindlePreneur and founder Dave Chesson on Twitter at @DaveChesson.

Other business advice this week:

Podcasts

All About Platforms, Apparently by Bryan Cohen And H. Claire Taylor

How to record your own audiobook, how to use Facebook’s new Pages to your advantage, why connections can be the best way to market, how to make Vella work for you, how to make Patreon work for you and your readers, and what’s the big news for authors at Wattpad. Bryan Cohen is an experienced copywriter, bestselling author, and the founder of Best Page Forward and Amazon Ad School. You can find out more about Bryan at BryanCohen.com. H. Claire Taylor is a humor author and fiction strategist, as well as the owner of FFS Media. The Sell More Books Show is a weekly podcast focusing on helping new and experienced authors stay up-to-date with the latest self-publishing and indie news, tools and book selling and marketing strategies.

Hybrid Publishing by Thomas Umstattd Jr.

Is working with a hybrid publisher the right decision for you? Learn the pros and cons of hybrid publishing and how to explore your options. Thomas Umstattd Jr. is the CEO of Author Media, literary agent, author, podcaster, and marketing experts. For more, check out his website ThomasUmstattd.com. The Novel Marketing Podcast is all about the business side of being a successful author.

Other podcasts from this past week:

Videos

Make Good Choices by Becca Syme

Why some marketing tactics work for some authors but not for others. But there are dozens of other presentations that are definitely worth watching. Becca Syme is a Gallup-certified strengths coach, author coach, and nonfiction author. The QuitCast for Writers is a video podcast where Becca Syme discusses what to keep, what to quit, and what to question, if you are trying to make a go of the author career. This was one of the presentations in the 2022 AuthorTube Writing Conference, which started on July 15. Check out the full schedule here, which has the links to all the other videos.

How To Write Likeable Protagonists by Stavros Halvatzis

Likeable protagonists contribute to the commercial success of a movie or novel. Stavros Halvatzis is a writer and writing teacher. Get Writing is Stavros Halvatzis’s YouTube channel. For more advice like this, check out StavrosHalvatzis.com or follow himvia his RSS feed (direct Feedly link here).

How To Use D2D’s Automated Frontmatter & Endmatter Tools by Mark Leslie Lefebvre

Front matter and end matter are essential parts of any book, but can be difficult to keep up to date as you publish more books. Draft2Digital’s automated front matter and end matter tools update content such as the author biography, publisher biography, copyright information, and useful marketing tools such as book teasers and “also by” pages. Mark Leslie Lefebvre is the director of business development at Draft2Digital. Draft2Digital is one of the leading publishing platforms that helps authors publish their books to multiple platforms. It also has a very nice and easy ebook creation and formatting tool.

Other videos from this past week:


Am I missing any writing advice sites? Email me at [email protected] or leave a note in the comments below.

 

Edited by Melody Friedenthal

MetaStellar editor and publisher Maria Korolov is a science fiction novelist. During the day, Maria Korolov is an award-winning freelance technology journalist who covers artificial intelligence, cybersecurity and enterprise virtual reality. See her Amazon author page here and follow her on Twitter, Facebook, or LinkedIn. Email her at [email protected]. Her first virtual world novella, Krim Times, made the Amazon best-seller list in its category. Her second novella, The Lost King of Krim, is out now. She is also the editor and publisher of Hypergrid Business, one of the top global sites covering virtual reality.