Month: October 2016

How Do You Write? Podcast

I’ve really been enjoying Rachael Herron‘s “How Do You Write?” podcast.  It is relatively new, and up to 21 episodes.  I’m a knitter and had been following Rachael’s knitting blog for years.  In 2006, she completed NaNoWriMo and that manuscript was traditionally published in 2010.  It was with great pleasure that I attended her signing at Kepler’s Books in Menlo Park in 2011 (and we knitter fans brought our knitting of course!). Since her NaNoWriMo debut, she has gone on to publish 13(!)  books in six years.  Incredible. Length: Compact, less than half an hour Format: Interview style. I have enjoyed the guests she has had on the show and the questions she asks them.  Her guests have included Chris Baty, the founder of NaNoWriMo (1999) and also Grant Faulkner, the current director of NaNoWriMo.  Her questions are writing related and the responses have been so interesting.  She asks “What is the worst writing advice you’ve ever been given?”  and my favorite, “How do you refill the creative well?”  The answers give insight to probably any level of writer (newbie to veteran). I appreciate that she is organized in her interview, delivers the consistent questions and respects our time.  She has a nice rapport with her guests and the podcast is enjoyable. Rating: 5...

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NO PLOT? NO PROBLEM! Review

No Plot? No Problem! Author: Chris Baty This little book is a powerful tool to help frustrated writers get past their perfectionistic, procrastinating tendencies using a secret weapon that works on most of us in our adult professional lives, a deadline.  If only we were 5, it would be candy… But for all too serious adults who want to write a novel and who must be perfect at all times, NO PLOT? – NO PROBLEM! asserts that a deadline contains these potent tools to help writers find success: Brings Focus Forces us to make time Reaches past our too conservative estimates of what it is we are capable and serves as a “creative midwife” His recipe requires that the Novel be started on Day 1 and you can bring: Outline(s) Character maps Friends – bring friends who want to write as well as Commit to love ones who will ridicule you when you want to quit Write a Magna Carta of the 10 favorite parts of books you love Write a Magna Carta 2 of the 10 least favorite parts of books you don’t love What you cannot bring… another novel.  Yes, writing prose for the novel before the starting gun goes off is forbidden!  OK, OK, if you read further, in the smaller print with less strong punctuation, he does ‘allow’ you to write an additional 50,000 words...

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Your First 1000 Copies by Tim Grahl – Book Review

So you’ve written your great novel and you’re ready to now start marketing it, right? Well, according to the book launch expert, Tim Grahl, who launched successful authors like Hugh Howie and Charles Duhigg to the NYT Bestseller lists, the best time to start is probably more like 9 months to a year before publication day! Your First 1000 Copies: The Step-by-Step Guide to Marketing Your Book Author: Tim Grahl Length: Compact, quick read but bonus content available online If there were a theme to Tim Grahl’s book, Your First 1000 Copies, it might be “There is No Easy...

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Using Dictation on the iMac to Write Your Book

As the old adage goes, “How do you eat an elephant?” One bite at a time. NaNoWriMo is 50,000 words in 30 days. How does one crank out roughly ~1700 words a night? I had listened to a couple of podcast interviews where the guests had discussed writing fiction through the use of dictation, and even while they were out walking (!). This got me thinking. I am used to using dictation at work. At the office, I work on a PC Windows machine, and have Dragon NaturallySpeaking speaking. In addition, I frequently use a Dictaphone and send .wav...

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StoryShop Podcast

In contrast to the Self Publishing Podcast, which features the same three writers, the StoryShop Podcast is a compact and helpful resource. Length: 25 min. Format: a 9 episode series, not including the intro episode.  I blasted through these in two nights of walking the dog.  All three of the authors contribute, and it is very interesting the way they discuss their collaboration.  I especially enjoyed the way they discussed their  “beats” process which is a writing term I had heard before but didn’t understand. Another segment that I also found interesting is that when they build their character, they look through actors photos to find a starting point.  Not the same character, but that look and feel so that when Sean does the hand off of the beats to Johnny, Johnny has a sense of how to describe how that character moves and looks when he starts the first draft. Rating: 5 stars The StoryShop...

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Julia Vee, Writes At Night