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10 Writing Resources: Fantasy

10 Writing Resources: Fantasy

10 Writing Resources: FantasyEven though my debut, The Eleventh Trade, will be a contemporary story, fantasy remains my true love. There’s so much room for exploration, creativity, and experimentation — and I can’t wait to get back back to it! But in the meanwhile, here are some resources I’ve found helpful that you might enjoy, too.

My first golden rule of fantasy: The more real you want it to be, the more solid details you should use. I don’t mean like “the blue door that was chipped around the handle except for where it wasn’t chipped, aka everywhere else, and…Continue Reading

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100 Artists to Commission

100 Artists to CommissionI’m a big fan of commissioning artists to make concept art for my WIPs, especially whenever I hit a milestone. It’s a great way to reward yourself with some pretty pictures, while also paying it forward into the wider artist community.

Below I’ve compiled a list of 100 artists, mostly grabbed from DeviantArt, who are pretty darn awesome. You can click the pictures to be taken to their commission information pages. I snatched talented people from a range of experience and prices, so you’ll find everything from crazy ridiculous deals to professional illustrations. Enjoy!

And always check the artists’ pages to make sure their commissions are still open before you contact them!

(note: there are obviously a lot of images in here so it might take a sec to load)

Do you have a favorite artist you love to commission? Leave a comment and tell me about ’em! I want to know!

 

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In Standard

8 Tips for Making the Most of a Writing Day

8 Tips for Making the Most of a Writing Day

8 Tips for Making the Most of a Writing DaySometimes, fate (or deadlines) plop a writing day in your lap. A glorious day with loads of energy to devote to your craft!

When I want to make the most of that time, I use these methods to keep myself on track. It hasn’t been uncommon for me to hit 5000 or even 10000 words within 5 hours when I am intentional about the following steps. And sometimes I’m not even half-dead by the point I leave my desk!

Of course, everyone has their personal style and way to get into rhythm, but hopefully…Continue Reading

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How to Focus on One Story

How to Focus on One Story

How to Focus on One StoryA lot of my novel-mentees struggle to stay focused on one story at a time. I get that. I mean, there’s so many other sparkly things out there to explore!

That abundance of story ideas might be a good thing far down the road, when you’re churning out multiple books a year. But early on, it can be dangerous. It’s always tempting to ditch whatever piece you’re working on for the newest, shiniest idea. And that’s what you want to avoid, particularly if you’re a chronic follower of random, time-device wielding rabbits.

 

Here are some…Continue Reading

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In Standard

How to Avoid the Mirror: Description Tips

How to Avoid the Mirror: Description Tips

Avoid the Mirror: Description TipsAh yes, we all know the description cliché: Our hero or heroine looks in a mirror and studies it so that the reader can form a full picture of this character. Bonus points if it’s in the first chapter! 

Appearances can be tricky, I won’t deny that — but there are lots of creative ways to get around Ye Olde Mirror cop-out!

My cheat-answer for just about any writing question is intentional details. How do you build a fantasy world? Intentional details. How do you create mood? Intentional details. How do you describe…Continue Reading

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Writing Through Trauma

Writing Through Trauma

Writing Through TraumaOn the WriteOnCon forums this year, an interesting topic came up: How do you write when you have personal trauma(s)? Do you use them, or avoid them?

I only have my own experience to draw from, and everyone is unique. Our wounds are different and the ways we carry them are different. So please take this with a grain of salt.

In my young life, I’ve already had to carry a few traumas. Mine (like most) rise from situations where I (or a loved one) were incredibly unsafe, and afterward my life was entirely changed. That how my counselor defines…Continue Reading

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14 Exciting YA and MG Releases in 2017

One definite perk of being the web master for WriteOnCon has been reading all about the upcoming releases in 2017 and 2018. So this year, my TBR list already has some books that have yet to be released! I thought I’d share my list with you guys, in case any of them perk your interest, too.

The Book Jumper by Mechthild Gläser

Amy Lennox doesn’t know quite what to expect when she and her mother pick up and leave Germany for Scotland, heading to her mother’s childhood home of Lennox House on the island of Stormsay.

Amy’s grandmother, Lady Mairead, insists that Amy…Continue Reading

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How I Met My Publisher(s)

How I Met My Publisher(s)

Guys, I am SO EXCITED to FINALLY be able to share some important news with you. But now that the time has finally come, I don’t even know how to start.

buriedtreasurecommunity

Gifs will help me.

I’m going to pull a Ted Mosby and back this train all up to show you How I Met My Publisher(s). Here we go!

February 2016

My agent Amber has been working with me on Illuminate for some time. But she’s like, “Look, I’m going to need you to stop talking to me about this refugee novel idea you’ve got and actually write it.”

So I’m like…

panic

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Best Book Discoveries of 2016

Best Book Discoveries of 2016

After an enormous flop in my reading habits throughout 2015, I’m finally starting to get on top of things again! In 2016, I read 62 books (out of a 50-book goal). Disclaimer: A lot of these were children’s fiction (even picture books), but I’ll take what I can get.

Below I’ve listed some of my favorite discoveries from 2014, along with publishers’ descriptions. Enjoy!

Best Picture Books

The Journey by Francesca Sanna (Illustrations)

With haunting echoes of the current refugee crisis this beautifully illustrated book explores the unimaginable decisions made as a family leave their home and everything they know to escape the turmoil and tragedy brought by…Continue Reading

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How Plot and Narrative Strengthen Stories

How Plot and Narrative Strengthen Stories

As a young writer, I didn’t know the difference between plot and narrative — or how to make both work for the most compelling hook, arc, and story. Lucy Christopher at Bath Spa University was the first to sit down with me and really explain it.

You need both plot and narrative hints to hook a reader. It’ll take a lot of revisions to get the balance of this right, but hooks that instantly immerse you in the story have this in common: Plot and narrative are working together.

In the opening of Hugo, for instance, the action (plot) that changes everything is when our protagonist tries to steal a mechanical mouse…Continue Reading

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