This week’s top writing advice from around the web for Oct. 9, 2022

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(Image by Maria Korolov created with Midjourney.)

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 here).

Productivity, mood management, and battling the demons inside

Attention = Power by Steven Pressfield

Where we put our attention defines who we are and shapes what we will become. Steven Pressfield is the author of The Legend of Bagger Vance and other novels as well as The War of Art and other non-fiction books about creative success. Check out his Amazon author page here. StevenPressfield.com offers weekly articles as well as a free mini-course about the business of writing.

Book Writing Strategies That Don’t Work by Daphne Gray-Grant

This is a list of strategies that don’t work — for SOME writers. If you’re following one of these strategies, and it’s working for you, I recommend ignoring the advice in this post. But if it’s not working, then check out this article for ideas on how to switch things up. Daphne Gray-Grant is a writing coach, author of Your Happy First Draft, and host of The Write Question show on YouTube. Publication Coach offers books, courses, videos, and one-on-one coaching for authors. If you want more advice like this, subscribe to their RSS feed (direct Feedly signup link) or follow them on Twitter at @pubcoach or subscribe to their YouTube channel.

Motivation Doesn’t Finish Books by Allison Williams

Some writers can finish a book all by themselves, but even more of them have support systems, deadlines, teachers, exercises, instructions and help. Allison Williams has edited and coached writers to publication with many of the best-known outlets in media. She has written for for National Public Radio, CBC-Canada, the New York Times, and many more. Her latest book is Seven Drafts: Self-Edit Like a Pro From Blank Page to Book. Learn more at her website, I Do Words. For more advice from Jane Friedman writing advice site, subscribe to their RSS feed (direct Feedly signup link here).

Video: What I Wish Every Author Knew About Productivity by Becca Syme

Great productivity advice from a coach who’s worked with thousands of authors. For example, some authors write better — and can actually write more — when they write slowly. 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.

Other motivational advice this week:

The art and craft of writing

Welcome To The Future, Part 2 by Lisa Norman

In this post, a couple of different AI text generators are used to write short stories. And it’s not all that great — but not half bad, either. 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).

Slow Your Roll by Martin Johnson

How to pace your novel, based on examples from the movie Top Gun: Maverick. Martin Johnson is an award-winning Christian screenwriter. For more, visit MartinThomasJonhson.com and follow him on Twitter at @mtjohnson51. 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).

Casting For Contrast, Part One by Lee Gramling

Aspiring fiction writers often don’t pay enough attention to helping their readers tell one character from another. This is really basic if you want to produce a page turner that requires no unnecessary effort or confusion. Lee Gramling is an author writes Westerns that are set in Florida. Check out his website, LeeGramling.com. The Florida Writers Association is a great resource for writers, with a very active advice blog. Follow the Florida Writers Association via their RSS feed (direct Feedly link here), on Facebook at Florida Writers Association and on Twitter at @FloridaWriters1.

When To Kill A Hero Or Not by Chris Winkle

A protagonist death can make the audience rage-quit. Is it worth it? 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.

If You Knew Why I Do It by Margot Kinberg

If the antagonist is a layered character who keeps our attention, it’s easier to understand their crime, and it can make for a more absorbing story. Margot Kinberg is a university professor and mystery novelist. On her website, Crime Writer Margot Kinberg, Kinberg offers writing advice articles and videos about books worth taking a closer look at.

Video: Truly Evil Antagonists by Stavros Halvatzis

How to make your antagonist a truly memorable villain through the technique of triple-dipping him or her into the cauldron of evil. 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 him via his RSS feed (direct Feedly link here).

Podcast: Novel Characters by Oren Ashkenazi, Chris Winkle, and Wes Matlock

If the character is fresh and different from what people have seen before, that’s a huge boon for the story. Creating novel characters is easier said than done though, as figuring out what people have seen before is a tricky business. 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.

Other writing advice this week:

The business side of writing

Podcast: Beta Bruises, Unreliable Narrators, And Changing Covers by Bryan Cohen And H. Claire Taylor

Why your book isn’t for everyone, and that’s a good thing, why beta readers can hurt, but also help at the same time, 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.

Video: How To Boost Your Book Sales With Clayton Noblit by Mark Dawson And James Blatch

All the different services and features Written Word Media offers to authors, including promotions for both free books and bargain books, and a new membership program for authors who do a lot of marketing. Mark Dawson is a USA Today bestselling author who teaches courses about book production and marketing. Check out his website at MarkJDawson.com. James Blatch writes military thrillers. For more, check out his website, JamesBlatch.com. On the Self Publishing Formula show, Mark Dawson and James Blatch talk about building a career as a self-published author.

Other business advice this week:


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.

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