Archive | Writing Life

Guest Post: Switching Gears with Karen Akins

When Amie invited me to contribute this guest post, my first question was, “Is there a particular topic you’d like me to write about?” She said it could be anything publishing-related…maybe the challenges of writing time travel. Which makes sense. The first book in my time travel duology, LOOP is already out in the world, and its sequel TWIST releases on April 7th. I began writing LOOP in 2010. It’s 2015. That’s five years of […]

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When it’s too close to home: Writing Q&A with Anne Bustard, author of Anywhere But Paradise

It is my absolute pleasure to welcome Anne Bustard today, in celebration of the release of her new Middle Grade book, which comes out today. Anne, a part of Egmont’s Last List, has graciously agreed to indulge my questions about her writing process with her brilliant answers. So without further ado, welcome, Anne! Set in 1960 Hawaii, Anywhere But Paradise is the story of reluctant seventh-grade newcomer Peggy Sue Bennett, who is baffled by local customs, worried […]

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Guest Post: Linda Goodnight on How To Finish That Novel

Even after nearly fifty books, I still don’t feel like an expert, but I have learned a few things on this journey. Let’s face it, writing a book is daunting. Even an old dog like me feels as if I’m about to bungee jump from Mt. Everest every time I start a new book. The beginning is exciting and words flow with passion, but soon passion becomes plain hard work and a finished product seems impossible. […]

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Is That Subplot Helping or Hurting Your Novel?

Subplots have a way of taking over novels. They steal all the action, distract the protagonist, or in the worst cases, shine brighter than the actual plot. Good subplots enhance the story, support the theme, brighten what’s already there, while a bad subplot tries to smother it in its sleep with a pillow. The annoying part is, sometimes we just don’t know which is which when they first come to us. Some of the best-looking […]

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Guest Post: Secrets to Writing a Series with Lydia Kang

Imagining a Series When I wrote Control, back in the days before I had an agent and publisher, trilogies were the thing. The Divergent Series was out there, as were the Hunger Games. So I knew I was going to query with this book that was “standalone with a potential for a series” (writer speak for “I’m not pushing three books on you, but they’re yours if you want them!”) Control ended up being a […]

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