Putting yourself out there – why and how

Good advice!

The Scribblers

In the aftermath of #1st50, I thought now would be a good time to talk about putting yourself out there. Because, it’s tough. And when you get rejected, it feels like your book baby got turned into a bomb, and it just blew up in your face…

itchy-scratchy Why do we do it to ourselves?

Why, oh why, oh why?

So why do we do it? Why don’t we just roll over and give up? Decide caring about stuff is too hard, and hide ourselves in a hole and never come out again?

sadness-inside-out Entering competitions makes me feel like this…

Well, first off, if you’ve ever seen Inside Out, you should know that being sad is okay. It’s a necessary part of life. Nobody’s happy all the time. And if you don’t believe me then answer me this… would you be happy if this happened to you?

man-eating shark.gif Life is shit and…

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July 14, 2017 · 2:36 am

Generation Author Snowflake & The High Cost of Instant

Another great post from Kristen Lamb.

Kristen Lamb's Blog

Image via Flickr Creative Commons, courtesy of David Rogers Image via Flickr Creative Commons, courtesy of David Rogers

Technology always changes our reality and there are inevitable growing pains that go part and parcel with any innovation. Every meaningful advance always has social consequences.


From the Gutenberg Press to the Model-T to electric lighting humans have had to adjust, shift and learn to balance great benefits with never before encountered consequences.

With the digital age? Here we go again.

As I’ve mentioned before, as early as 2004 when I was puttering around a site called Gather, I saw what social media was going to evolve into, that we were looking at likely the largest shift in communication since the Gutenberg Press. I knew even then that this was likely going to be the end of publishing as we had known it for well over a hundred years.

But I would be lying if I said I didn’t have…

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Writing competition review – Ink and Insights

The Scribblers

We have a page dedicated to the writing competitions for unpublished authors such as ourselves and probably you, who are reading this. But I wanted to take a little time and say a few words about one in particular which, for an unpublished author trying to improve, is a goldmine. A treasure trove. The Holy Grail.

7zt4wl1b Ink and Insights runs their competition every year in 3 categories – Apprentice, Master and Non-fiction

Ink and Insights is ‘a writing contest geared toward strengthening the skills of independent writers by focusing on critique and feedback from industry professionals. Each entry is assigned four judges who specialize in the genre of the manuscript. They read, score, and comment on specific aspects of the manuscript. (Characters, dialogue, style, pace, tension, etc. for novels.) Once all four judges have finished, the four scoresheets with feedback are returned to the writer with a numerical score.

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Pushing My Creative Limits

From an Ink & Insights judge.

Sue A. Fairchild, editor

Recently, I’ve been judging writing contests for an online group called Ink & Insights. At first, I was concerned it would take up too much of my valuable editing and writing time, but as I do more and more of them, I realized two things.

5006396635_762e7b781c_o The giant gavel of justice at the Ohio Judicial Center in downtown Columbus, Ohio by Sam Howzit (Flickr)

  1. Reading a variety of novels has helped me as a writer and an editor. As I read through each selection, I have to read it as a reader – not an editor. That is sometimes hard for me. What’s worse, these are words that have not yet been completely edited and, sometimes, NEED my editing skills. (In fact, I may have already picked up a new client thanks to this work.) But when I read as a reader, I can get into the story, pick up the…

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How Strong is Your Dialogue? How to Fix Common Dialogue Problems

Kristen Lamb's Blog

Blah Blah Blah

For my regular peeps, you probably know about my favorite hostage guest contributor, blogger Alex Limberg. Today, he shines his spotlight at some basic dialogue problems we all know in one form or another.

Dialogue is one of the most powerful tools for storytelling. Dialogue is the difference between a cast of talking heads versus characters so real they are more alive to us than even people we know. Dialogue is the engine of plot, and coolest thing is?

We can mess with the reader’s emotions more than that crush in high school. But, though it seems so simple to use? It’s far from it.

So without further ado…take it away, Alex!


Here is the crazy thing about dialogue: It’s just pure, blunt, in-your-face words. With dialogue, there is no filter in between your characters and the reader.

When you describe an action, a setting or what your character…

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Caveat Venditor—Five Mistakes KILLING Self-Published Authors

Kristen Lamb's Blog

Rise of the Machines Human Authors in a Digital World, social media authors, Kristen Lamb, WANA, Rise of the Machines

All right, it’s about to be a brand new year and many of you are wanting to finally see your books published. ROCK ON! But, I am the friend who will tell you if there is toilet paper hanging out of your pants. Writing isn’t all glitter and unicorns and I want to warn you of the most common stumbling blocks, because I really DO want you to succeed.

When I began writing I was SO SURE agents would be fighting over my manuscript. Yeah. But after almost fourteen years in the industry, a lot of bloody noses, and even more lessons in humility, I hope that these tips will help you.

Self-publishing is AWESOME, and it’s a better fit for certain personalities and even content (um, social media?), but we must be educated before we publish. In fact, my last book Rise of the Machines (cover above) is much…

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The Three “Acts” of a Writer’s Journey—From Newbie to Master

A great blog!

Kristen Lamb's Blog

Pirate Code=Writing Rules. Clearer now? :) Pirate Code=Writing Rules. Clearer now? 🙂

The mark of a great storyteller is they make our job look easy. The story flows, pulls us in, and appears seamless. Many of us decided to become writers because we grew up loving books. Because good storytellers are masters of what they do, we can easily fall into a misguided notion that “writing is easy.” Granted there are a rare few exceptions, but most of us will go through three acts (stages) in this career if we stick it through.

Act One—The Neophyte

This is when we are brand new. We’ve never read a craft book and the words flow. We never run out of words to put on a page because we are like a kid banging away on a piano having fun and making up “music.” We aren’t held back or hindered by any structure or rules and we have amazing…

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