Why Your Writing Matters—Even if You’re Not Making Any Money from It

Today’s guest post is by Ali Luke. 

How important is your writing to you?

Is that importance reflected in how much time you spend on it?

Pretty much every writer starts out writing without being paid—often without any prospect of payment. This is particularly true for fiction writers, who might well hone their craft for years, even decades, before successfully selling their work.

In fact, for many writers it’s not just a case of “not making any money”—it’s a case of spending money. Books, courses, conferences, pens, notebooks, software—it all adds up. Continue Reading…

Scene Mastery Boot Camp ~ Geyserville, California

My co-instructor, Catharine Bramkamp, and I are putting on seven—yes, seven!—boot camps all over northern California (though, if you and your writer friends are interested in hosting us to teach one in your area, contact us to discuss!). Last week I shared information about our first boot camp, to be held in the historic Gold Rush town of Nevada City.

This week, learn about our second Scene Mastery Boot Camp set in the heart of California’s gorgeous wine country.

Why a boot camp?

Because getting away from the daily grind and distractions affords you the opportunity to focus 100% on your writing. No cleaning, laundry, meals to cook. Just indulge in your creativity.

At our boot camps, you’ll spend three full days with other writers, writing, brainstorming, reading your material, getting constructive feedback and personal attention, and having fun!

How often do you get out of your cage and just hang out with other creatives in a small group setting like this? Continue Reading…

How a Writing Tool Can Help You Write Better

Today’s post is by Hayley Milliman.

I started writing when I was seven years old. My first stories were ghost stories, carefully crafted and meticulously printed in small three-ring binders.

As I grew up and moved on to different topics, my love for writing grew too. What didn’t come along, however, was a desire to make sure my writing was perfect.

In many ways, I’m the ultimate pantser. In my ideal world, I spend all day waiting for inspiration to strike, and when it finally does, I write and I write until my fingers bleed. Then, I send off the work, without so much as a single reread.

Of course, writing this way isn’t practical, and it’s certainly not going to get you very far if you’re hoping to actually earn money from your work. As I’ve matured into a professional writer, I’ve had to build a process and structure for myself that ensures my work is not only inspired but technically correct and enjoyable to read. Part of that process includes making use of something I swore I’d never use: an editing tool.

An editing tool is like the plague to a pantser like me. For years, the last thing I wanted to do was go sentence by sentence through my own work, looking for missed commas or clunky turns of phrase. Continue Reading…

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