I subscribe to more than 150 writing advice sites and gather the best posts for you every single Sunday. 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).
Productivity, mood management, and battling the demons inside
There’s often a point, when working on a longer project, when the writing just isn’t fun anymore. This is a problem for the majority of writers, even those with a lot of experience. Here are some tips to get past the wall and get the creative juices flowing again. Derek Murphy is a book cover designer, fantasy author, and writing expert. His latest guide, Book Craft, was released late last year and is on Kindle Unlimited. And you can get his free Guerilla Publishing e-book here. Follow him on Facebook at @Creativindie or on Twitter at @Creativindie. The Insecure Writer’s Support Group is a home for writers in all stages, from unpublished to bestsellers.
What Preys On Your Fiction? by James Scott Bell
How to deal with self doubt, with your inner critic, and being too risk-averse. Thriller writer James Scott Bell is the author of more than twenty books about writing, and you can follow him on Twitter at @jamesscottbell. His website is JamesScottBell.com. The Kill Zone is the home of eleven top suspense writers and publishing professionals. They cover the publishing business, marketing how-tos, and the craft of writing. Follow them on RSS here (direct Feedly signup link). Follow them on Twitter @killzoneauthors.
Other motivational advice this week:
- 10 Tips To Help You Become The Writer You Wish To Be by Suzanne Lieurance for Writers On The Move
- 6 Remedies For Writerosis by Elisabeth Wong for A Writer’s Path
- 8 Truths Every Writer Needs To Remember Along The Writing Road by Edie Melson for The Write Conversation
- Video: Are You Self-Sabotaging Your Writing Goals? by Lauren Sapala for Lauren Sapala
- Boost Motivation To Write Daily: 10 Practices by Jordan Kantey for Now Novel
- Dreams Come True When You Write Amazing Fiction by Meghan March for Kobo Writing Life
- Failure Or Success—Writers Get To Choose How To Look At Circumstances by Henry McLaughlin for The Write Conversation
- Video: Feel Like You’re Going Nowhere With Your Writing? by Lauren Sapala for Lauren Sapala
- How Do I Find Time To Write? by Linda S. Glaz for The Write Editing
- Video: How To Conquer A Lack Of Writing Motivation by Lauren Sapala for Lauren Sapala
- How To Let Your Mind To Wander — A Writing Secret by Daphne Gray-Grant for Publication Coach
- Three Tools For Getting Through The Post-New Year’s Resolution Slump by Mary Carroll Moore for How to Plan, Write, and Develop a Book
- Top 10 Book Planners: Can These Planners Help You Finish Your Book? by Joe Bunting for The Write Practice
- Why Writers Need To Become Time Aware by Terry Whalin for Writers On The Move
The art and craft of writing
Here Are Two Ways To Write Organic Themes by K. M. Weiland
Organic themes are symbiotic with their stories’ plots. When everything is working well in a story, plot and theme are two halves of a whole. 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 Authors, via 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.
All You Need To Know About How To Write With AIs by Lisa Norman
How to ethically use AIs as a writer partner. Lisa Norman writes as Deleyna Marr and is the owner of Deleyna’s Dynamic Designs, a web development company focused on helping writers, and Heart Ally Books, an indie publishing firm. She teaches for Lawson Writer’s Academy. Writers in the Storm is another great site for writing advice, with a group of regular contributors and guest writers who post frequently. It is very well worth following on RSS (direct Feedly signup link here).
My Best Tool For Describing My Characters’ Emotions by Lisa E. Betz
This is a review of The Emotion Thesaurus. I love that book, and recommend it as well. I have the e-book version. But, to be honest, I’ve lately been using ChatGPT to do the same thing. An engineer-turned-mystery-writer, Lisa E. Betz infuses her novels with authentic characters who thrive on solving tricky problems. Her debut novel, Death and a Crocodile, won several awards. For more from her, check out LisaEBetz.com, follow her on Twitter at @LisaEBetz or on Facebook at @LisaEBetzWriter. 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).
Can I Fix A Problematic Story? by Oren Ashkenazi
The more baked in a story’s problems are, the more work it will take to fix them. For example, the sexism in the Lord of the Rings is mostly incidental and easily remedied. But the racism is core to the story’s plot — orcs are a sapient species and are inherently evil. Oren Ashkenazi is a speculative fiction manuscript editor at Mythcreants. Mythcreants is my all-time favorite writing advice site. Get their RSS feed here (direct Feedly signup link) or follow them on Twitter @Mythcreants and on Facebook at @mythcreants.
How AI May Change Writing And Creating by Dan Blank
Why artificial intelligence in creative work is compelling, why AI is likely to create a crisis in creative fields, and how to consider ways to thrive as a creator as these changes happen. Dan Blank is a marketing expert who’s worked with thousands of writers and creators over the past ten years. At We Grow Media, Blank offers one-on-one marketing consulting to help authors grow their platforms, create meaningful connections with readers, and prepare for big book launches.
Podcast: The Long Shadow Of Unanswered Questions by Mary Robinette Kowal, DongWon Song, Erin Roberts, Dan Wells, and Howard Tayler
How to use unanswered questions to drive tension, and how to avoid some common pitfalls. Mary Robinette Kowal is the Nebula and Hugo Award-winning author of the Lady Astronaut series and other books and the former president of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America. Howard V. Tayler is the creator of the webcomic Schlock Mercenary. Writing Excuses is a podcast about the art and business of writing. Support them on Patreon.
Video: Logic Faults – Is Your Writing Guilty Of Them? by Susan MacGregor
Logic faults occur when the writer hasn’t devoted enough time to the story or novel’s set-up, or when original twists on a character create reader confusion. Does your story exhibit faulty logic? How can you know for sure? Susan MacGregor is an editor with On Spec, one of Canada’s foremost magazines for speculative fiction. Writers’ Rx is a just-launched YouTube channel dedicated to improving writing.
Podcast: Dragons by Oren Ashkenazi, Chris Winkle, and Wes Matlock
What defines a dragon, whether it ever makes sense for them to hoard gold, and how to balance the inevitable power creep that comes with adding a dragon to Team Good. Oren Ashkenazi is the speculative fiction manuscript editor, Chris Winkle is the founder and editor-in-chief, and Wes Matlock is a content editor at Mythcreants. Mythcreants is my all-time favorite writing advice site. Get their RSS feed here (direct Feedly signup link) or follow them on Twitter @Mythcreants and on Facebook at @mythcreants.
The Why & How Of Foreshadowing by Chris Winkle
Most writers know that foreshadowing is the difference between a twist that works and a twist that doesn’t. But while good foreshadowing is essential to pulling off surprises, it’s also a versatile tool that becomes essential in a wide variety of story situations. Chris Winkle is the founder and editor-in-chief of Mythcreants. Mythcreants is my all-time favorite writing advice site. Get their RSS feed here (direct Feedly signup link) or follow them on Twitter @Mythcreants and on Facebook at @mythcreants.
The Best Writing Advice Ever: Rescue Your Stalled Book With One Word by Anne R. Allen
That word is “but.” Yup. What you do is you write out your story’s main plot points, with “but” instead of “and then…” anywhere the story is sagging. A wizard wants a hobbit to go on an adventure, BUT the hobbit doesn’t want to go. Read this post for more details about how to do it, and how the South Park guys use this technique. Anne Allen started her career at Bantam and knows her way around the publishing industry. Allen also writes mysteries and how-to books about writing. For more advice like this, follow her on Twitter at @annerallen or on Facebook at @annerallenauthor. Anne R. Allen’s Blog… with Ruth Harris offers advice from a couple of publishing industry veterans. For more advice like this, subscribe to their RSS feed (direct Feedly link).
Other writing advice this week:
- 6 Tips For Writing a Great romance by Victorine Lieske for MyStoryDoctor
- 6 Types Of Foreshadowing For Writers by P.J McNulty for Self Publishing School
- Breathing Life Into Dead Stories by Ran Walker for Writer’s Digest
- Five Ways Numerical Data Can Improve Your Novel by Sara Gentry for DIY MFA
- Four Powerful Tools For Creating Dread In Your Fiction by Amy Christine Parker for DIY MFA
- Video: Giving Your Characters Room To Grow by Morgan Hazelwood for Morgan Hazelwood
- How To Create Characters Who Intrigue, Not Overshare by Shirley Jump for Writers In The Storm
- How To Kill A Character Without Enraging Readers by Ellen Buikema for Writers In The Storm
- How To Plot Your Way Through Writing A Novel Series by Soraya Lane for Writer’s Digest
- How To Use Hyperbole In Writing by P.J McNulty for Self Publishing School
- How To Write A (Great!) Sex Scene by Lisa Barr for Career Authors
- How To Write A Byronic Hero by Glen C. Strathy for How to Write a Book Now
- How To Write A Great Story Arc For Your Character by Lucy V Hay for Bang2write
- Video: How To Write The Last Chapter Of Your Book by Abbie Emmons for Abbie Emmons
- Self-Editing Your Novel by Linda S. Clare for Linda S. Clare
- Start Late, End Early by Stavros Halvatzis for Stavros Halvatzis
- The Big Event — Using Social Occasions To Elevate Your Story by John J Kelley for Writer Unboxed
- Podcast: The Expanded Ultimate Story Checklist: Are Two Agendas Genuinely Clashing? by Matt Bird for The Secrets of Story
- Podcast: The Expanded Ultimate Story Checklist: Does Each Scene Both Advance The Plot And Reveal Character? by Matt Bird for The Secrets of Story
- Podcast: The Expanded Ultimate Story Checklist: Does The Audience Have A Rooting Interest In This Scene? by Matt Bird for The Secrets of Story
- Podcast: The Expanded Ultimate Story Checklist: Does The Scene Establish Its Own Mini-Ticking Clock? by Matt Bird for The Secrets of Story
- Podcast: The Expanded Ultimate Story Checklist: Does The Scene Have Both A Surface And A Suppressed Conflict? by Matt Bird for The Secrets of Story
- Video: The Key To Understanding And Using Archetypes by Stavros Halvatzis for Get Writing
- The Last Word: Epilogues by Sophie Masson for Writer Unboxed
- Video: Visual Story Planning With Plottr by Mark Leslie Lefebvre for Draft2Digital
- : What Is Chekhov’s Gun And How Can You Use It? by Gabi James for The Novelry
- Writing About Native Americans: 7 Questions Answered by Sarah Elisabeth Sawyer for Jane Friedman
- Writing Cozies With An Edge: 3 Ways To Incorporate Unusual And Uncomfortable Topics Into Cozy Mysteries by Harper Kincaid for Writer’s Digest
- Your Story Is Amazing. But Does It Actually Make Sense? by Susan DeFreitas for Writer Unboxed
The business side of writing
Podcast: Paperbacks, Social Media, and AI Copyright by Bryan Cohen and H. Claire Taylor
How to get people from social media to your email list, and more. 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.
Don’t Build Your Network by Tiffany Yates Martin
Instead of building a network, involve yourself in your community. 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.
Book Covers, Images, And Copyright: An Interview With A Book Designer by Kirsten Oliphant
Pay attention to the contract terms with your book cover designer — and make sure you have the rights to the underlying fonts and images. If you’re not careful, you might end up getting sued. This article is a great overview of what can go wrong and what to watch out for. Kirsten Oliphant is the author of Email Lists Made Easy for Writers and Bloggers and the host of the Create If Writing podcast. Create If Writing is a website about platform building for writers, bloggers, and creative types.
Beta Reader Words Of Wisdom by Dale Ivan Smith
How to find beta readers and what to expect from them. Dale Ivan Smith is a fantasy and sci-fi author who’s currently working on a cozy mystery series about a crime-solving librarian. The Kill Zone is the home of eleven top suspense writers and publishing professionals. They cover the publishing business, marketing how-tos, and the craft of writing. Follow them on RSS here (direct Feedly signup link). Follow them on Twitter @killzoneauthors.
Other business advice this week:
- Podcast: Marketing In A Niche and Author Collaborations With TB Markinson And Miranda Macleod by Sacha Black for Sacha Black
- Video: Can I Query More Than One Book At A Time? by Jessica Faust and James McGowan for BookEnds Literary Agency
- Podcast: Prolific Writing, Diversification, And Using Emerging Technologies With Joseph Nassise by Joanna Penn for The Creative Penn
- How To Make Money As An Author: Important Tips For A Writer’s Success by Joslyn Chase for The Write Practice
- Podcast: How To Sell Your Book At The Correct Price by Penny Sansevieri for Author Marketing Experts, Inc.
- The Ultimate Guide To Building Your Author Brand Online by Penny Sansevieri for Author Marketing Experts, Inc.
- 3 Ideas To Inspire Instagram-Worthy Book Posts by Carol Van Den Hende for DIY MFA
- How To Make A Book Marketing Plan by Clayton Noblit for Written Word Media
- What Is A Synopsis? Definition And How To Write A Good One by Dave Chesson for Kindlepreneur
- The Importance Of The Book Pre-Order To Authors by John Briggs for A Writer’s Path
Am I missing any writing advice sites? Email me at [email protected] or leave a note in the comments below.
MetaStellar editor and publisher Maria Korolov is a science fiction novelist, writing stories set in a future virtual world. And, during the day, she 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]. She is also the editor and publisher of Hypergrid Business, one of the top global sites covering virtual reality.