Learn How To Write A Novel - Writing Classes and Workbooks

Starting to Write?

40 video/audio lessons that take you step-by-step from idea to finished novel, taught by an award-winning, best-selling novelist and nationally acclaimed writing teacher. Easy, understandable, foundation elements essential for every genre. Learn Skills, Secrets and most of all... Story.

Rewriting and Editing?

A great book isn't written. . .it's rewritten. Learn how to analyze and fix your novel’s problems with this unique “self-editing” system. . .then arm yourself with over 40 Advanced Fiction Classes and rewrite your story into publication.

Ready To Publish?

You’ve worked too hard to quit now. Your story is nearly ready, but now it’s time to sell your novel. Learn the steps to creating a powerful proposal, secrets to pitching, the key elements to your marketing plan, a social media primer and how to create rabid reader fans. It’s time to ignite your career.

Just You Know… Write the Book!

Rachel Hauck, How To Catch A PrinceSeriously…

I wonder if our authority ancestors would berate us for our whining and procrastinating.

For having writing tools and craft lessons at our fingertips, literally, and yet we don’t finish the book.

For having libraries down the street, YouTube a click away, writing partners a phone call/Facetime/Google Hangout away.

For being able to attend conferences a car or plane ride away.

For Twitter and Facebook for which to spread the good news of our stories.

Yet, we complain.

Okay, I complain, but bear with me. Help me shoulder my guilt.

Why don’t I have more sales? Bigger sales?

What? My books aren’t as good as everyone else’s in the whole wide world?

Oh look, that authors has a whole bunch of five star reviews and I only have, well, a whole bunch too but she has thirty more than I do.

Wha!! 

Distractions.

Of the heart, mind and soul that zap our strength.

We have more information and knowledge more blogs and videos than you can skip across the surface of calm waters, yet, we still don’t finish that book.

We still complain about sales.

We still aren’t content.

Hmmm…

There’s a line where we trust God with our lives, our stories, our business. Where only He can make “it” happen.

He alone is our source and resource.

BUT, there is a time to work.

To put your ore in the water and row.

Stop reading craft blogs.

Stop researching.

Stop plotting.

Stop planning.

Stop being tentative.

Stop comparing your story with others.

Do it!

There’s no way to publish a book if it’s not written.

If we over think, we can ruin the fun of it all.

Trust me, I know.

I feel constricted sometimes to come up with a great story I love, the publisher loves, the reader loves, the reviewer loves and the old love, the youth love, and contest readers love, and blah, blah, blah, and suddenly it’s no fun any more.

That’s on me.

I’ve taken the fun out of it trying to make it be something everyone else wants it to be.

Yet, am I doing what I’m called to do?

Yep.

Write! Worship as I write.

Be.

Do what He’s called me to do.

We have to write the book.

That’s always the first step.

There’s no conference, retreat, blog or group of craft partners out there that are more important than you getting with the Lord and writing the book!

Don’t get caught up in the externals. Deal with the internal journey of story telling.

It’s not always easy.

You have to write when you’re emotionally drained, tired, frustrated.

Get filled up.

And write the book.

Write that brilliant book!

 

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5 Love Languages

Understanding the 5 Love Languages of a Writer

Gary Chapman wrote the best-selling book The Five Love Languages, detailing how people receive love in five primary ways:

Gifts – Love expressed through the giving of gifts
Quality Time – Love expressed by giving someone undivided attention
Words of Affirmation – Love expressed by using words to build someone up
Service – Love expressed when actions speak louder than words
Physical Touch – Love expressed through appropriate touch

What would those five love languages look like for a writer?

Gifts

You’ve probably seen the “gifts for writers” lists that abound around Christmas-time. A favorite of mine is “Mostly FREE gifts for writers” posted on Edie Melson’s The Write Conversation blog. But writers need love all year-round and there are all sorts of writer-themed gifts:

 Coffee mugs – Maybe one that says: Yes, I am silently correcting your grammar or I’m not daydreaming, I’m plotting
AquaNotes – A notepad and pencil for writing ideas down in the shower
Typewriter jewelry or cufflinks – My husband has custom-ordered bracelets to celebrate my books.
• Gift cards - Think Starbucks or Amazon or Etsy.

Quality Time

Quality Time for a writer is not always time spent with someone you love – although it can be that. Quality Time can be when someone you love gives you uninterrupted time with your imaginary characters. Time to write. To rewrite. To plot. To ponder.
Another way love can be expressed by Quality Time? When someone goes for a walk with you and lets you talk story with them.

Words of Affirmation

When someone writes a positive review of one of my books, they are speaking my “author love language” by using Words of Affirmation. Author Cynthia Ruchti says positive reviews are gold to an author. Writing and posting a review takes time – but when you consider it as one of the Five Love Languages of an Writer, you see the true value of your review. And when someone writes a note to an author, telling them how much they enjoy their novels … well, those kind of Words of Affirmation are keepsakes.

Service

How can you help a writer? I’ve had other writers offer to:
Brainstorm 
• Read a scene or a chapter to see if it’s working or not
• Read over a synopsis

Family and friends have performed Acts of Service while I’ve been on deadline. Things like:
Making appointments – One friend makes sure my hair appointment gets scheduled. We get our hair cut at the same time.
Carpooling to volleyball practice/school
• Making dinner
• Running errands
• Cleaning the house
• Doing research – My husband called and asked some research questions for me, allowing me to focus on writing.

Physical Touch

Writers need hugs. Sometimes writers need someone to hold their hand and commiserate with them when they’re dealing with disappointment. And you know what? Surprising a writer with a gift card for a professional massage can be a wonderful way to encourage and support them – especially one who just got off deadline.

When you consider the Five Love Languages of an Writer, which one would be your primary love language?

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Connilynn Cossette

Risking it all: Being a writer is not safe! by Connilyn Cossette

This weekend, I did something I have never done before. I stood in front of a group of women for my first speaking engagement as an author. For weeks leading up to the day my stomach did gymnastics. But I knew my speech well, had practiced it in the mirror and in front of friends, and I was confident that my topic was divinely inspired. But still, I did not feel safe.

I am an introvert. Speaking in front of people older than about age twelve makes me extremely self-conscious. Will I look weird? Will I sound funny? Will I talk too fast? What if they think what I say is stupid or strange or…stupid?

Yet I felt that God had called me share my heart with these ladies, so I pushed through my fears. And guess what? It was great! The talk went well, my nerves disappeared, and from what I was told later, God used my words to touch hearts.

We, as writers, are called to do something that is in no way “safe”. We are called to pour out our hearts onto the page and then, against our own intuition, share those intimate thoughts with the world. It is a frightening thing, to hand over a piece of ourselves and allow people to judge, criticize, and possibly even rip it to shreds.

But when has anything exciting not involved risk? Marriage? Childbirth? Parenting? Traveling? Cliff-diving?

If we snuggle up with our fears the experience of risking it all will be missed. If I had held on to my insecurities and kept my manuscript clutched tightly to my chest I would never have known that it was any good. If I hadn’t taken those first terrifying steps of entering contests and querying agents, then Counted with the Stars would not be releasing next spring with my dream publisher.

When we push our book-babies out of the nest, there is risk. There will be people who turn up their noses at our genre, or our writing style. There will be critics and bad reviews. Guaranteed.

But if we are obedient to our calling as writers then there is nothing to fear. Yes, we risk failure. Yes, we risk rejection. But we also get the exhilaration of jumping off the cliff and into the arms of the One who called us to write in the first place. And there is no safer place to be.

~*~

Connilyn Cossette has a passion for writing stories of timeless grace that draw readers into a personal encounter with the rich ancient world of the Bible, and its Author. Her debut novel, Counted with the Stars, will be released with Bethany House Publishers in Spring of 2016. Connect with her at www.connilyncossette.com.

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