A Look-Ahead to 2017 from a Writer’s POV

Kristen Lamb’s post “After the Dumpster Fire of 2016—How to Make 2017 ROCK!” is an inspirational look-ahead for writers and how to accomplish more and better writing in the new year.

new year graphic

One thing you should be doing is reading. After all reading books is probably what brought you to the craft of writing in the first place.  A quote from Kristen, for writers about reading, especially if you swear you don’t have the time:

Reading is how we hone our skills and learn. I do a lot of editing and one of my biggest complaints with new writers is it is clear they do not read. They beat up a lot of the same words, the same tired descriptions and their dialogue sounds like a bad soap opera. Often I can tell in less than ten pages they have no plot.

But these are the same folks who will claim they have no time to read.

I read about three books a week. No I don’t sit with a nice hard back the way I would prefer. I listen to audio books and it isn’t my preference but it works with all I have to do. I can’t sit and leisurely page through while folding laundry. I can, however, listen to an audio book and with Kindle Unlimited and an Audible membership I can afford my habit.

No, not all writers are plotters, but I will be blunt. Pansters really are plotters but the reason they can get away with not sitting and outlining is they literally have read so many books that structure is hardwired into their brains and they can navigate a 60,000-110,000 word story intuitively.

Successful pantsers are extremely well read (plotters too but pantsers even more so).

If we don’t spend time reading, we will probably spend way more time with crappy drafts. Most people are not born writing savants. Stephen King didn’t become Stephen King without reading fiction and using others to refine his craft.

You can read the post in its entirety here.

Enjoy!

Perfect Image for the Anxious Author

I love Kristen Lamb’s posts. This one, Why Your Book Isn’t Selling, I admit I haven’t even read yet. I will do later today after work, but this first image in Kristen’s post had me laughing out loud:

Skeleton Author Awaiting SalesIt sure hits home for every author at some time or another. This skeleton writer would also be appropriate at a book signing, when one prays for eager readers to come to the bookstore, buy one’s book, and approach one’s table to have it signed. Sometimes, those are hours of misery and isolation, and chatting with bookstore staff who try to hide their embarrassment on your behalf. Ah, good times, indeed!!

In order for you not to have to see my bones awaiting . . . I invite you to my Amazon book store. While there, take note of the image of me from only a few years ago (2013). My best friend recently advised that I should update the Amazon author photo because of how young I was then. Now that I’m older (3 whole years!!!), he said, readers may respect my writing more if they see a true-to-life photo. Um . . . first of all, shut up! But secondly, maybe I already do look like my skeletal friend in Kristen’s post.

Harlan Ellison, Kristen Lamb, and Making Money

by WheresTristanJust want to pass along this good rant by Kristen Lamb on writers getting paid (demanding to be paid, not being paid, etc.), called “Pay the Write.” Make sure you click on the link in her post to Harlan Ellison‘s pithy rant as well. Good way to end 2015–reminding ourselves that we’re professionals who need to be paid for our work, especially in this climate of free e-books and 99-cent sales!

Kristen’s blog post starts like this:

All righty. I’d vowed to take off for the holidays but *laughs hysterically* sure. Like THAT was going to happen. No, seriously, I’m working on resting more. I’m also working on learning to shut up. Clearly those two goals are getting re-slated for 2016 resolutions because the whole “Inside words stay inside…”

Not working out for me. So why not leave 2015 with a bang? Haters gonna hate.

To quote the great Tywin Lannister, Lions do not concern themselves with the opinions of sheep.

Today I’m going to say something that could quite possibly be grossly unpopular, but whatever. It’s for your own good. I’m feeding y’all broccoli to offset all that fudge and alcohol you’ve consumed during the holidays.

There’s a trend that just makes me see red and I’m calling it out today because if we do not address this 500 pound used paper elephant in the room, then it’s going to be really, really hard for you guys to reach your dreams, which I assume is to work as a full-time PAID writer.

For those of you who do NOT want to be PAID to write? The following does not apply. If you are content to work a full-time regular job AND slave over a manuscript as a second job and your ONLY reward is simply nice reviews, compliments, hugs, cuddles, and the joy your stories might create in the hearts of others?

I am NOT talking to you.

And just gets better. Go on, take a read here.

Are You a “Real” Writer or Do You At Least Play One?

Have you ever asked yourself that question? If so, then . . . well, Kristen Lamb . . . take it away at your wonderful WarriorWriters WordPress blog. She has a witty take on writers and writing in her post today.

And now, for something completely different: BUNNIES! I may not be a “real” writer because some days, I’d rather watch bunnies than write. Especially these bunnies at Bunnymama’s awesomely cute Instagram site, http://instagram.com/bunnymama#, devoted to her two bunnies, Eddy and Rambo.

Here is one of the bunnies. There are videos on the site, too. Go to it, you won’t be disappointed.

Instagram Rabbit, Bunnymama, Rambo: Photos

(Rambo the rabbit, courtesy Bunnymama)