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Fiction Writing 101 #9 Beguiling Beginnings — Janice L. Dick

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Plato said, “The beginning is the most important part of the work.” Kimberly Yuhl suggests you have eight words to capture your reader’s attention. Rob Weatherhead states in the article, Say it Quick, Say it Well (please excuse the grammar), that the attention span of a modern internet consumer is short. “Studies have shown that 32% of consumers will start abandoning slow sites between one and five seconds.” (more…)


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Faith Inspired — by Nikki Rosen

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Francine Rivers authored more than 20 novels, all of them bestsellers. Rivers dreamt of being a writer even as a young child. In university she moved towards making that dream happen by majoring in English. When she heard that publishers wanted romance novels, she went to work and wrote a few love stories. She submitted them for publication and amazingly, some of her work was published. She was hooked. From then on, writing became her life and her identity. But then something happened. (more…)


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Encouraging the Disillusioned Writer — Carolyn R. Wilker

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Recently I wrote a letter to a fellow writer who had become discouraged. How could I help her get her pen moving again—or her fingers to the keyboard? After thinking on it awhile, this is what I wrote:  Dear Discouraged Writer There’s so much to learn, between writer’s guidelines and grammar and the struggle with making the words sound right, but if you’re comparing yourself with them, it will only make you feel bad. Every writer works hard, even the prolific author of the Harry Potter series who received many rejections before she broke into print. But what did I say about comparing oneself? Surely not to J. K. Rowling. (more…)


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Don’t Lose Your Stuff! Grandpa’s Letter About Backing Up — Jack Popjes

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Dear Mica, Kiki, and Ellie, I’m delighted with the latest stories you sent me! They are getting better all the time. I especially like the drawings that you made to illustrate them. I’m not at all surprised at how good your stories are, after all, you aren’t just any grandkids, you’re my grandkids.  I’m also glad that you’re each keeping a journal of daily happenings, and how you feel about them, and that you, Ellie, have started keeping a notebook of writing ideas. Way to go!  You’re so lucky that you can write everything on your laptops! For 30 years, I wrote daily dairies by hand. Then they finally invented laptops and I got one. I packed my diary notebooks in a large plastic bin with a sign on it, In Case of Fire, Grab This Bin and Run!  (more…)


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Sound Bytes: Part 4 of Writing with Sensory Details – Sandi Somers

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Beethoven discovered he was losing his hearing as early as age 25. For a musician, nothing could be more disastrous.  In his depression he wrote, “Alas! How could I possibly refer to the impairing of a sense which in me should have been more perfectly developed than in other people, a sense which at one time I possessed in the greatest perfection…”  And yet Beethoven composed the Ninth Symphony while totally deaf. It is a joyous work and includes the well-known song, “Joyful, Joyful, We Adore Thee.” Following the premiere of this symphony, which Beethoven conducted, the audience broke into thunderous applause. Only when his solo contralto turned him around did he realize how appreciative his audience was.  (more…)


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