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Capture your Creativity by Journaling

Today’s guest post is by author and writing coach Catharine Bramkamp.

As writers we often start our day scrubbing in one kind of a journal or another. But did you know that journaling with intention can create your first steps to better work?

There are as many iterations of journaling as there are writers. Julia Cameron calls her journaling work “morning pages.” Natalie Goldberg calls first-thing writing her “ten minute write.” You can call it unconscious or spontaneous writing, or you can call it channeling the muse or just bitching on the page to avoid bitching to loved ones.

You can call it anything  you like, but journaling will deliver new ways to capture old thoughts. And the first way to accomplish this is to write without stopping so your subconscious can take over your editor.

In my journaling classes, I ask students to write for ten minutes.  What they discover is a  decided divide between minute five and minute six. At minute six the writing switched from surface observations to deeper ideas and surprising thoughts.   One student started writing about her parents, one started chronicling her recovery process. One asked how many minutes should a person spend on discussing his feelings.

What is so radical or even magical about writing for ten minutes without stopping?

Continue Reading…

5 Self-Publishing Mistakes to Avoid 

Today’s guest post is by Dave Chesson.

There’s a lot to know when starting out in the self-publishing business. I cringe when looking back at some of the rookie mistakes I made when I was publishing my first books. But, then, you won’t master self-publishing without putting in the work to get there.

Don’t get me wrong—mistakes are a part of the journey, and they’re okay to make. But, hey, if you can get advice and save the hassle, that’s a good thing too.

In this post, we’ll explore a few errors to avoid when publishing your first book.

  1. Not Reading in Your Genre

While it’s tempting to find untapped niches and write books to match, it’s a huge mistake to write books in genres you don’t know a lot about. Sure, as an author, it pays to read a wide range of books; but to be successful, you should read plenty of books in your chosen genre.

It is important to keep in mind that you’re not writing for yourself or for your career; you’re writing for an audience. You may not be well read in your genre, but your audience will be. They’ll be purchasing your book based on the fact it’s a “Western” or a “sci-fi” novel and will have expectations to match that genre. You need to understand what those readers are looking for when they buy a book—otherwise, expect some not-so-great reviews.  Continue Reading…

3 Reasons for Authors to Start Blogging, and 3 Ways to Do It Right

Today’s guest post is by Brandon Cornett.

Are you a writer trying to reach more readers? Do you want to increase your exposure among your target audience? If so, you could benefit from starting your own blog. And if you currently have a blog but haven’t put much effort into it, now is the time to begin.

I speak from experience. As a veteran freelance writer, I’ve used blogging to help my clients grow their websites and businesses. And as a fiction writer, I employ those same skills to bring readers to my own site, to support my publishing goals. In this article, I’ll share some of the lessons I’ve learned through fifteen years of blogging.

Three Good Reasons to Start Blogging

Almost any writer of fiction or nonfiction can benefit from publishing a blog. It allows you to promote your work and grow your audience by doing something you love—writing. With that in mind, here are three more reasons to start blogging.

  1. You already have the necessary skills.

As a writer, you already have the most important skill needed to launch a blogging program—you know how to write. You know how to introduce ideas, develop them, and support them with information. Those are the primary skills needed to launch and maintain a blogging program, and you’ve got them in spades. Continue Reading…

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