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Inspiration and pet peeves

My middle-grade novel revision is moving along, but not as quickly as I’d like. Part of the reason is that I’m editing faster than my critique group meetings. Sounds weird, I know, but I’ll explain. You see, we meet twice a month and can take up to five pages to each meeting. After each meeting,…
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Finding ideas

One of the most asked writer questions — I’d be willing to bet, but I haven’t done a formal study — must be “Where do you find your ideas?” I’ve been asked it a lot, and I’m not a well-known writer. I’d guess J.K. Rowling could feed a school-full of children for months if she…
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How to find critique groups

In my last post, Sandra asked how to find critique groups. So, here’s a quick rundown. I write for children, so I found my critique group through the Society of Children’s Book Writers & Illustrators, of which I’m a member. If you write or illustrate for children and you’re not a member of SCBWI, I…
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Praise for critique groups

Being a member of a good critique group is like gold for up and coming writers. I am blessed with a great group of talented and insightful people who help me see problems or even places in my story or writing that I can do better. They push me to be the best I can…
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Getting organized

I don’t know if it’s the summer heat, the late nights or the extra day-job hours I worked last week, but getting up early to write just wasn’t happening. I resolve to do better this week, and started off with getting up at 6:30 this morning to get a bunch done. It feels good.   But,…
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Why do we write

Literary agent Nathan Bransford put up a post last week posing a hypothetical question (click here for the post): If someone could tell you the future, would you want to know if you will be published, and if you found out you wouldn’t, would you still write?   The post got a lot of people talking,…
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Chapters for a children’s book

When I was writing my middle-grade novel, I didn’t pay much attention to page counts and chapter length. Mainly, chapters were broken up by scenes.   But during my hiatus — after getting to The End — I finished reading “Barkbelly” by Cat Weatherill and was amazed at how short her chapters were and how…
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Revising from notes

At my critique group a couple of weeks ago, someone asked me what I wanted to achieve in my revision of my middle-grade novel, if I had specific things I knew I wanted to do.   During my break, I had thought about this a lot — anxious to start working on the novel again…
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Getting to the point

Writer’s Digest’s Maria Schneider put up an informative post the other day about things she heard at when she accompanied the magazine’s contest winners on their New York agent meets (lucky them). I won’t plagarize her information here, but one caught my eye for further review: The elevator pitch, be able to sum up your…
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Reading to write

I’m back on the novel. Last week was still really busy, but I jumped into the rewrite of my novel anyway. Time to start waking up at 6 am again! New goal: Finish the rewrite by November.   I’ve also made strides with the Sir Newton Color Me Florida book. Drawings are completed and fixed…
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