Saturday, September 30, 2017

Focusing on God so Our Colors Shine Through

by Edie Melson @EdieMelson Instagram: @Stop2Pray
It's not the size of our trials, but the size of our God that affects whether or not our colors shine through
And not only this, but we also exult in our tribulations, knowing that tribulation brings about perseverance; and perseverance, proven character; and proven character, hope; and hope does not disappoint because the love of God has been poured out within our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us. Romans 5:3-5

Fall is my favorite time of the year. I love the cool, crisp days that bring relief from summer’s heat. But most of all, I love the beautiful colors adorning the trees in our Blue Ridge Mountains. My husband and I get great joy from driving through the mountains to see the changing leaves. It always amazes me how vibrant the colors are and, until recently. I took that beauty for granted. 

Friday, September 29, 2017

The Hills & Valleys of the Writing Life

Edie here. Today you are in for a treat! One of my all-time favorite YA authors has agreed to share some of the things she's learned while traveling this writing road. She also has a new book, The Revisionary (don't you LOVE the title!) and I've shared all the information about it after the post. Please give her a warm TWC welcome!

The Hills & Valleys of the Writing Life
by Kristen Hogrefe @kjhogrefe 

Driving home during one of my Sunshine State’s summer downpours, I heard Tauren Wells’ “Hills and Valleys” on the radio. How well those lyrics fit the writer’s life!

Our writing journeys are often a series of highs and lows. I love seeing the wide-eyed excitement when my writer friends post that they’ve signed with an agent or contracted with a publishing house. I remember the almost surreal feeling when I signed a three-book contract with Write Integrity Press and celebrated with a friend over coffee.

Thursday, September 28, 2017

Ways to Honor the Craft of Writing

by Henry McLaughlin @RiverBendSagas

Honor the Craft
James Scott Bell recently posted a blog called Don't EverMail It In where he wrote about the attitude that we’ve reached a certain point in our writing where we don’t have to improve.

What struck me most is his definition of a real writer. It’s someone who honors the craft and never settles.

In this blog, I’m going to expand on a couple of his points.

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Steps to Make Your Writing Critique Group Successful

Tips for developing a healthy critique group.
by DiAnn Mills @DiAnnMills

Critique groups can help us define our manuscripts. But finding the personality and expertise with other writers can be like searching for a new doctor.

Successful writers want to develop new skills by learning from those who know the craft. Face to face meetings offer an opportunity for the writer to reach professional goals. Meeting with a select group of writers who share the same joys and challenges inspires us to continue toward our goals.

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

A Fun Exercise for Writers: Let the Murders Begin

by Eva Marie Everson @EvaMarieEverson


Don't miss this fun game for writers!
This spring, Mignon Fogarty (Grammar Girl) posted a “Quick and Dirty” blog concerning fiction writer Marc Laidlaw and his wildly popular tweet from the week before.

“The first line of almost any story,” he tweeted, “can be improved by making sure the second line is, ‘And then the murders began.’”

Monday, September 25, 2017

7 Ways We Can Mind Our Manners on Social Media

by Bethany Jett @BetJett

Don't miss these valuable online etiquette tips!
It’s important to be polite but it’s easier to be bolder with your words when you’re typing them into your computer instead of saying them to someone’s face. The Golden Rule of doing unto others what you would have them do unto you applies virtually, so let’s look at a few ways to mind our manners online.

Sunday, September 24, 2017

Discordant Distractions

by Edie Melson @EdieMelson

Beware becoming a discordant distraction.
I love listening to praise music. It can send my soul soaring as I reconnect with the healing truth that comes only from God. It also anchors that truth in my brain in a way that few other mediums can do. When I hear truth sung, I recall it quicker when a situation arises, even when I don’t feel like singing.

Saturday, September 23, 2017

Choose To Write

by Cathy Fyock @CathyFyock

Tips for when you struggle against sitting down to write.
The Struggle
Sometimes I feel like a petulant child when I sit down to write. “I don’t want to write,” the child complains. “I want to play games and have fun.”

Friday, September 22, 2017

4 Writing Boo Boos You Don’t Want to Make

by Lori Hatcher @LoriHatcher2

Don't make these grammar mistakes!
A writer friend gave me a t-shirt to celebrate my new job as editor of a regional magazine. Its message was short and sweet: I’m silently correcting your grammar.

Thursday, September 21, 2017

Finding Unbiased Beta Readers for Your Manuscript

by Cyle Young @CyleYoung


Looking for Beta "Stranger" Readers for your manuscript.
Last year, I wrote a series of short stories. I wanted to self-publish them in order to build my newsletter mailing list, but I needed to find unbiased Beta readers who could give me “real” feedback.

I didn’t want to ask my friends and family, for fear they would give me the standard pat on the back or false approval.

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Enhance the Wonderful in Your Writing

by Katy Kauffman @KatyKauffman28

Use this valuable acronym to enhance your writing.
“Wonderful” sticks to the heart as much as it does to the mind. Memories of fun-filled travels, time with family and friends, and special moments make a home within us forever. Books can do that too.

Wonderful happens when a book speaks to us about a heartfelt need, when it answers a plaguing question or solves a challenging problem, when it refreshes ours spirits and reminds us that hope is alive and God is with us.

Use this acronym as a checklist to enhance the wonderful in your writing.

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

When You Feel Awkward Promoting Your New Book, Remember Glory!

by Lucinda Secrest McDowell @LucindaSMcDowel

"Living so that ordinary graces are not only noticed and appreciated,
but passed along to others. That is our call." -Lucinda Secrest McDowell
As you read today’s blog I am knee-deep in launching a new book. With all that entails. Including the uneasy feeling of “self-promotion” which, frankly, is a struggle for me.

You too? Yeah, it’s that whole tension between being excited about sharing
our words with the world and being embarrassed to keep putting ourselves out there.

Monday, September 18, 2017

Encourage Conversation on Your Blog with These 7 Tips

by Edie Melson @EdieMelson


7 Tips to Keep the Conversation Going on Your Blog
Blogging is a great way to build relationships with your audience. 

But a lot of people forget that, just like building relationship in person, we have to work at building bridges. It’s never a good idea to talk so much that others don’t have a chance to share their thoughts, and that holds true in blogging. 

There are things we can do to make sure our posts encourage conversation. And there are things we can do that discourage interaction.

Sunday, September 17, 2017

Discouragement Can be a Good Thing For Writers

by Andy Lee @WordsByAndyLee

"Allow God to turn your writing discouragement meant around into something good ." ~Andy Lee
Discouragement is disillusioned self-love, and self-love may be love for my devotion to Jesus–not my love for Jesus Himself. ~ Oswald Chambers
You might want to read that again. It took me a couple of times. Oswald never tip-toed around the hard stuff. He always called it as he saw it. When I comprehended this sentence above, the words went straight to my human heart.

Saturday, September 16, 2017

How Self-Talk Affects Our Writing

by Emme Gannon @GannonEmme

"Writers have a mission to change the world, one word at a time." ~Emme Gannon
Have you ever written a scene of great consequence and, suddenly, your mind takes you to an event in your distant past? A sense of place takes over. You write with fervor because you feel what your character feels. You know what she knows. You want what she wants. Except your story had never been resolved. So you try to write the story the way it should have been. While you mourn.

Friday, September 15, 2017

Should an Indie Author Go to a Writing Conference?

by Traci Tyne Hilton @TraciTyneHilton

Writing classes are critical to the success of ALL writers!
I just have to chuckle if anyone is still asking this question As far as I can tell the big conferences all have great big indie tracks full of expert teaching.

Thursday, September 14, 2017

Write Like You Believe It

Edie here. Today I have a treat for you. My good friend, Cathy Baker is my guest today. Cathy isn't just an author I admire (have you read her blog, Cultivating Creativity? If not you should!) but she's also someone with wisdom and spiritual insight to spare. She's releasing her second devotional, Pauses for the Vacationing Soul: A Sensory-Based Devotional Guide for the Mountains, next week. This is the second in the series and I'd be super excited—even if I hadn't written the foreword for it. So be sure to give her a warm TWC welcome!

Stop treating your calling like a hobby...
Write Like You Believe It
by Cathy Baker @CathySBaker

Seven words changed the trajectory of my life.

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

An Opportunity to Grow in Your Writing

by Linda Gilden @LindaGilden

A special opportunity for writers
Have you ever wished you could sit at the feet of the writing masters and then apply what you learned with them looking over your shoulder? Well, CLASS Christian Writers Contreat can give you that opportunity.

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Five Ways to Forge Ahead after Writing Rejection

by Cindy Sproles @CindyDevoted


Don't let writing rejection stunt your growth as a writer.
When the seeds are planted, you never know what will sprout.

We made a tough decision—to take down a huge 40-foot elm tree damaged from lightening. It towered over our home and with each storm that passed, we wondered if the massive tree would find its way onto our roof. Cutting it down meant cutting away a boatload of beautiful memories with our boys. Pruning.

Monday, September 11, 2017

Tips for Writing Blog Posts People Will Read

by Edie Melson @EdieMelson


Blogging is both a discipline and an art form.
Blogging is both a discipline and an art form. It’s not—as some have suggested—throw-away writing. However, there is a method to writing blog posts that will increase your reach, engage your audience more effectively, and spur others to action.

The foundation of good blogging is laid with the beginning and ending of each post.

Sunday, September 10, 2017

Because God is Faithful

by Sarah Van Diest @SarahVanDiest


Never underestimate the faithfulness of God.
"Worthy are You, our Lord and our God, to receive glory and honor and power; for You created all things, and because of Your will they existed, and were created." Revelation 4:11

Friday, September 8, 2017

A Case for Curiosity—A Necessary Tool for Writers

by Marcia Moston @MarciaMoston

Curiosity is key for successful writers.
I’m standing in my backyard in the dark before dawn. It’s 5 A.M. but the little dog that’s visiting us must have a bladder the size of a grape because he can’t wait a minute more to do his business. Actually, I’m happy to be out here because it’s time for the annual August meteor showers. My eyes sweep the northeastern sky, looking for the constellation Perseus. Suddenly a brilliant flash blazes a trail above me, then vanishes. Within minutes, another does the same.

Thursday, September 7, 2017

Every Writer Needs a Team

by Lynn Blackburn @LynnHBlackburn

Teamwork for writers!
Last month, I shared what I learned from the book Grit—The Power of Passion and Perseverance by Dr. Angela Duckworth and how it applies to the writing life. If you haven’t read that one, you might want to pop over there first and read the post, A Book To Help Writers Persevere. I’ll wait.

Done? Good. Glad you’re back. :)

That post was already way too long, so I saved something to share with you this month.

In Grit, there are multiple anecdotes about elite swimmers—what makes them so good, what separates the champions from the talented, that kind of thing.

Near the end of the book the author shares an interview with a man who has studied elite swimmers for three decades. After affirming the author’s thoughts on how important grit is he said, “But I left out the most important thing. The real way to become a great swimmer is to join a great team.”

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

6 Steps to Write Through Emotional Pain

Edie here. Today I'm so excited to introduce you to an author I love and admire. Sarah Forgave has a new book of prayers out and it's a resource you won't want to miss. I've convinced her to share a post with us about how to write through emotional pain and I know you'll be blessed by her insight and application. Be sure to give her a warm TWC welcome!


6 Steps to Write Through Emotional Pain
by Sarah Forgrave @SarahForgrave

“There is nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at a typewriter and bleed.”

This Ernest Hemingway quote is one of the most freeing yet daunting realities for writers. To be successful, we have to be willing to pour everything out, to emote through our stories and non-fiction works so the reader will feel every last drop of joy and sorrow with us.

This often means revisiting memories we’d rather forget.

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

An Acquisition Editor Shares 3 Quick Tips for Creating a Strong Voice

by Kat Brzozowski @KatBrzozowsk 


When our team is looking through the manuscripts on Swoon Reads for the next books we’re going to publish, we each have a specific thing to which we’re drawn. Some of us are attracted to characters. Other people look for strong worldbuilding. For other people, the manuscript must have great dialogue. For me, voice is my #1 requirement when I’m looking to fall in love with a manuscript. But how do you create voice?

Monday, September 4, 2017

Pinterest for Writers—Blogging Tools

by Cynthia Owens @EfficencyAdict

Don't miss this important info for bloggers!
Over the past few months I’ve focused on various aspects of how writers can use Pinterest. We looked at how to do research, collaborate with other authors, and market your writing. Today we’re going to see why Pinterest is such a valuable tool for bloggers.

Sunday, September 3, 2017

Writing as Worship

by Danetta Kellar @DanettaKellar


Sometimes when we write, we can feel God's presence and His pleasure.
If I say, “I won’t mention Him or speak any longer in His name,” His message becomes a fire burning in my heart, shut up in my bones. I become tired of holding it in, and I cannot prevail. Jeremiah 20:9, HCSB

I was deep in, down under, immersed in that sacred place with my words and my God. Copies of a revised manuscript lay strewn across the coffee shop table as I paced and prayed, pausing intermittently to fire off sentences on the keyboard like cannon blasts of praise.

Within my soul, inside the most central part of who I am, I knew I was doing exactly what I was created to do. The more I wrote, the more I could feel God’s delight. Immersed in worship, indescribable joy rising, I brought him my gift.

Saturday, September 2, 2017

Imagination, Passions, Inspiration – Tools Each Writer Has Inside

by Tim Suddeth @TimSuddeth

I’ve been sharing some resources that writers can find helpful: whether they are books, websites, conferences, etc. There are numerous resources coming out each day.