This week’s top writing advice from around the web for Apr. 30, 2023

Reading Time: 8 minutes
(Image by Maria Korolov via 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).

Productivity, mood management, and battling the demons inside

Every Book Is Its Own Monster by Dea Poirer

Writing successfully often boils down to figuring out what process works best for you. Here, author Dea Poirer shares why every book is its own monster, the technology she uses to help her through the writing process, and more. Dea (D.H) Poirer is the author of Next Girl to Die, which hit #1 in the Amazon charts and the bestselling thriller Find Me in the Dark. She has been nominated for a Bi Book Award and her work has been featured in publications like Writer’s Digest, Publishers Weekly, Crime Reads, Buzzfeed, and more. Follow Writer’s Digest via their RSS feed (direct Feedly signup link), on Twitter at @WritersDigest and on Facebook at @writersdigest.

How To Unstick Your Camp NaNoWriMo Project by Krystal N. Craiker

There are some easy tips in this article — go outside, do a brain dump, or use AI to give that old noggin a quick nudge. Krystal N. Craiker is the author of the Scholars of Elandria fantasy series. For more advice, and book reviews, check out her website, or follow her on Facebook at @KrystalNCraiker or on Twitter at @KrystalNCraiker. NaNoWriMo is the official website of the National Novel Writing Month, which happens every November.

Increase Your Writing Productivity With This New Habit by Ginny Cruz

The new habit is using the calendar app on your phone to tell you when to start writing and when to stop. Does it work? Well, it worked for at least one writer. It might work for you. Ginny Cruz is a pediatric physical therapist, early intervention specialist, and award-winning author. The Write Conversation frequently makes the top lists of writing advice blogs. Follow them via their RSS feed (direct Feedly link here).

Other motivational advice this week:

The art and craft of writing

Where The Trouble Starts by Laurie Schnebly Campbell

Pretty much all of us, whether we’re reading or writing, want a book’s characters to be interesting…and we want them to make us care. One very effective way of accomplishing both those goals is to get them in trouble. Romance writer Laurie Schnebly Campbell is a former counseling therapist and runs writing workshops and, during the day, writes and produces videos for an advertising agency. Check out her website,, or follow her on Facebook at @laurieschneblycampbell or Twitter at @booklaurie. 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).

Tell Don’t Show by Terry Odell

While showing might create deeper immersion in a story, there are times when you don’t need to show things. Times when your shouldn’t show things. As Lee Child (and probably others) said, “Write the slow parts fast and the fast parts slow.” Terry Odell is an award-winning author of mystery and romantic suspense. Follow her on Facebook at @AuthorTerryOdell and on Twitter at @authorterryo. 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.

Podcast: When Harry Met Sally: Quasi Antiplot Huh? by Valerie Francis and Melanie Hill

A “quasi antiplot” subverts the standard plot formula, but only a bit. Nora Ephron used a quasi antiplot to write one of the most successful romcoms of all time. It also boosted her career into the stratosphere and led to a string of other successful movies. This podcast is about what a quasi antiplot story structure is all about, and how to use it for your own stories. Valerie Francis and Melanie Hill are literary editors and writers. The Story Nerd podcast demystifies story theory so writers spend less time studying and more time writing.

Turn In Your Badge And Your Gun by Steven Pressfield

Why your story needs that moment where the protagonist is asked to turn in their badge and gun — but continues on, anyway, on their own. Or, if not that exact scene, then something similar. 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. offers weekly articles as well as a free mini-course about the business of writing.

Podcast: Magic Systems For Fight Scenes by Oren Ashkenazi and Chris Winkle

How to design your magic system for maximum action entertainment. Oren Ashkenazi is the speculative fiction manuscript editor and Chris Winkle is the founder and editor-in-chief 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

Business Musings: Living In The Past by Kristine Kathryn Rusch

Lovely essay about the nostalgia of the good-old-days of traditional publishing — which never really existed. New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Kristine Kathryn Rusch writes bestselling science fiction and fantasy, award-winning mysteries, acclaimed mainstream fiction, controversial nonfiction, and the occasional romance. At, Rusch offers her thoughts about the publishing industry and other topics.

Podcast: How To Find Your Timothy   by Thomas Umstattd Jr.

Authors typically don’t have the money to do the market research it takes to figure out who their target reader is. Instead, they imagine their ideal reader — usually, someone just like themselves. But this might not actually help with writing books. Instead, many bestselling authors pick their ideal reader among the people they actually know, such as their son, or their wife, or a close friend, and write books that that person would like. This specificity promotes clarity and focus, and actually makes the book more approachable for more people. Thomas Umstattd Jr. is the CEO of Author Media, literary agent, author, podcaster, and marketing expert. For more, check out his website The Novel Marketing Podcast is all about the business side of being a successful 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.

Edited by Melody Friedenthal

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, and check out her latest videos on the Maria Korolov YouTube channel. Email her at [email protected]. She is also the editor and publisher of Hypergrid Business, one of the top global sites covering virtual reality.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *