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Category: Writing

Happy (Book) Birthday to Me!

Eight years ago today, I brought my son home from the hospital. Here’s one of my favorite shots of that day. Seven years later (one year ago today), I hit the “publish” button on my first novel, Forever a Bridesmaid, and rushed out the door to take my son to swim class. Later that night, just before midnight, I got to see my listing come up. One of the biggest thrills of my life. To celebrate my first anniversary, I’ve put three of my books on sale for 99 cents, just for today. So, fill up your e-reader and scoop up…

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In Defense of Romance Novels

Surely you’ve heard the snark. The titters over the lurid covers. The pollyanna insistence on a happy ending. Bodice rippers. Lowbrow, genre, not-literary. Porn for women. Harlequin used to be accused of selling books like bars of soap. Romance novels get a bad rap. And it’s totally ridiculous. Let me tell you why. Myth One: Feminists don’t read romance novels. A feminist is a person who supports social, economic, personal, and political rights for women. Romance novels are written for women, by women. They feature a woman choosing her life partner. The woman chooses to find romantic and (usually) sexual…

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Happy NaNoWriMo

So, it’s National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) time again. NaNoWriMo is celebrated during the month of November. The concept is simple. Write 50k in a single month, on a single novel. Write the words? You won! Over the years, I’ve done Nano on and off. I think I tried seven times and won twice. The Lost Art of Second Chances started out as my 2011 NaNoWriMo novel and I’d still like to revive my 2013 one someday. I’m not participating this year, for the second year in a row. I’m still recovering from surgery for a start and can only…

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Recommended Blogs for Writers

Previously on the blog, I’ve discussed my recommended resources for writers, mostly focused on books. This week, I thought I’d talk about my favorite writing blogs. The easiest way to follow blogs is to use a RSS reader. I happen to use NewsBlur but there are plenty of great ones out there. 1) The amazing novelist Jenny Crusie writes Argh, Ink! It’s not solely writing focused but, when she does discuss writing, it’s clear, straight-forward, no nonsense advice. And the crochet creations are adorable! 2) Kristen Lamb’s blog, “Warrior Writers” and her online community at My WANA (stands for We…

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More Top Ten Books for Authors

Last week, I discussed my favorite writing craft books. I’m back this week with a second list of recommended reads for writers. 1) If you’re ever planning to attempt National Novel Writing Month (Nanowrimo). In November each year, hundreds of thousands of writers attempt to write 50,000 words in one month. Don’t go for it without the definitive guidebook from the founder of the annual writing exercise. No Plot! No Problem! by Chris Baty. 2) Novelist Claire Cook (most famous for Must Love Dogs) recently came out with Never Too Late. There’s also a free companion workbook at her site. Great…

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Top Ten Books for Writers

Last week, I talked about my path to becoming a writer. This week, I thought I’d share some of my favorite craft resources. I am a craft book addict. I read writing blogs, listen to podcasts, and read writing books constantly. I’m always seeking to learn and improve my craft in any way I can. Once, when I was having a particularly discouraging writing day, I looked around my home office at the craft books lining the walls and realized that I’d never actually be able to quit writing. It’s just too ingrained in me now. So, without further ado,…

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Becoming a Writer

Today’s post is the first in a series about how to become a writer. Following the old medical school adage of learn, do, teach, I thought I’d set down my experience, just as my first novel is coming out next month.   “Fox says you’re a writer.” My son’s camp counselor waylaid me at summer camp drop-off this morning. “What kind of writing do you do?” As I struggled to put his two hundred pounds of gear away in his cubby (seriously—these kids pack for summer day camp like a trek to the Himalayas! Mommy gets to play the role…

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Binge-Watching Friends Update

I finally finished watching Friends. Overall, I really loved it and enjoyed spending time in Central Perk with the six of them. I’m sure I’ll rewatch the episodes for years to come. 1) How much did the writers hate Ross? (Or what did David Schwimmer do to the show runner?) Ross is my least favorite character and I think David Schwimmer comes across as whiney and shrill. Having said that, he also got the worst material and, yet, he continually gave it his all. I still loathe Ross but I admire David Schwimmer for his dedication to the role. It…

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And the living is easy…

Happy Summer! Fox is out of school for the summer. Hard to believe he’s not a kindergartener anymore. I borrowed this meme about summer from my friend Mary’s blog, Passionate Perseverance. She started the blog to document her life with her severely disabled daughter, also named Courtney. Her story is amazing (have Kleenex ready if you read it!) and she’s always an inspiration to me. Here are my Answer Me This answers for Summertime… #1 – Any big plans for the summer? Mostly, I’m going to be spending summer with my favorite guy, Fox. He is going to camp on…

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