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.

Featured Fiction Friday with Julianna Deering

Today we’re continuing our Featured Fiction Friday series, and celebrating one of the authors that helped make the our contest possible. Introducing Julianna Deering!

Q: Julianna Deering, can you tell us a little bit about your new book?

When a celebrated ACTOR IS FOUND MURDERED IN HIS DRESSING ROOM, all signs point to Drew’s old flame. But behind the curtains nothing is what it seems and this quickly becomes his MOST puzzling case YET.

Just as Drew Farthering thinks his life has calmed down some, Fleur Landis, a former girlfriend, reappears, in dire need of his help. She’s married now, no longer an actress–but the lead actor in her former troupe’s production of The Mikado has been murdered, and Fleur is the police’s number one suspect.

Drew would rather focus on his fiancée, Madeline Parker, and their upcoming wedding, but he can’t leave Fleur and her family in the lurch–even if she did break his heart once. As Drew, Nick, and Madeline begin investigating, they discover more going on behind the scenes of the theater troupe than could ever have been imagined. It seems nearly everyone had a motive, and alibis are few and far between.

Both the murder case and the presence of the beautiful, exotic Fleur put a heavy strain on Drew and Madeline’s relationship. Will their still-young romance survive the pressure?

“Deering gives us an enchanting mystery set around an England country estate in the 1930s… Rules of Murder is a wonderful, inspirational novel for those of you who love a good murder mystery.”–Fresh Fiction

This is Book Three of the Drew Farthering Mysteries. New readers might want to start with Book One, Rules of Murder, to get the most impact.

Q: Do you have any writing advice for the MBT Audience?

Set goals! Even if you miss them, you’re almost certain to have made more progress toward them than if you had set no goals at all.

Intake is as important as output. You need to fill up your creative tank with good writing, good movies, good music, good art, good worship. You can’t create great stories if your well is dry.

Don’t forget to play!


Julianna Deering has always loved British history and literature and is particularly a fan of the classic mysteries written by Dorothy Sayers and Agatha Christie. She graduated from the University of Texas at Dallas and, as DeAnna Julie Dodson, has also written medieval romances and contemporary mysteries. She lives outside Dallas, Texas, where she loves to quilt, cross-stitch, and watch hockey. Learn more at www.juliannadeering.com.

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Letting Our Characters “Get Tired of It”

Last weekend was one of those longtime-coming-but-so-worth-the-wait kind of events. After 18 months of planning, best-selling author Rachel Hauck spoke at Write in the Springs, the annual conference for the Colorado Springs ACFW group.

One of the first things I did when I became president of ACFWCS was to ask Rachel to be our 2015 speaker. Her yes was immediate and enthusiastic. The result? Two days of writers being taught – equipped and encouraged – by a woman who knows story and who wants other writers to succeed.

In between taking photos and checking on things in the background, I typed a few notes of my own. These two lines about developing characters stand out:

  • I am tired of being behind this Fear.
  • I am tired of this Wound.

Here at My Book Therapy, we’re all about creating compelling characters. And we start with the Dark Moment, which leads to a Wound, a Lie, and a Fear. The Dark Moment, Wound, Lie, and Fear affects our characters’ relationships with God and with others. As we write our stories, our characters fight against the pain of the Wound, the trap of the Lie, and the Fear that holds them back from being their true selves.

But there comes a time in our characters’ lives when they have to say:

  • I am tired of being behind this Fear.
  • I am tired of this Wound.

And this is when we, as the author, allow our characters to change. They have to change. Who wants to read a book where the characters remain the same from beginning to end?

Dark Moments, Wounds, Lies, Fears – they are not just craft elements created to help us write better stories. Each one of us has our own Dark Moment that resulted in a heart wound. We believe lies about ourselves and about God. Each of us is afraid. Of someone. Of something.

We have to grow up, embrace faith and the strength of God to say, “I am tired of being afraid. I am tired of letting this wound of my past control today and strangle my future.”

And as authors, we build those life-changing moments into our stories too. Allow our characters to move from fear to courage. Bring imaginary people into their fictional lives who help heal their wounds – who teach them to trust God again, or maybe trust Him for the first time.

Consider the story you are writing. When do your main characters get to say, “I am tired of being behind this fear” and “I am tired of this wound”?

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Nick Kording

Fear Not…in God’s Plan by Nick Kording

It’s contest season. Again. I don’t know about you, but I approach it with a combination of excitement, anxiety and fear.

I’m excited about the possibility the story I feel God gave me will be well received – excited for possible validation of the hard work and time put into a book – excited that some small truth about the hope, grace and redemptive love of God is out of my hands and into the world.

Still, there’s the anxiety over the not one, not two, but three typos I didn’t catch in the entry despite multiple reads by my huddle group and myself. There’s anxiety I didn’t convey the story well or whether I will do well in the contests. And, while I look at feedback as an opportunity to learn and improve, I am anxious about how it will make me feel about my abilities as a writer.

The worst, however, is the fear.

Do not be afraid. Fear not. Do not fear. Over and over again, we read these warnings in the Bible. In one of my favorites, God tells Israel,

… do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous hand. – Isaiah 41:10 (NIV)

Every time God or an angel shows up, the message is the same – Do not be afraid. I forget this message despite believing my writing comes from God. This is a truth I don’t struggle with. All stories, at least the ones of hope, redemption, grace and love come from God. The gift – the talent to put words to paper – comes from Him. He is the source of ideas, words and creativity.

Yet, when we write, it is so easy to allow fear – of rejection, of not being good enough, of failure and even of success – to invade our thoughts. It is tempting to do the opposite of God’s will. To fear instead of being overwhelmed by joy because He is with us in our writing. He helps us. He lifts up our writing.

Perhaps we forget because we trust in the wrong things as evidence He is with us in our writing. We look to numbers – how many followers, book deals, sales, stars, or likes rather than trusting in His timing, His lessons and His will.

This year, health issues made me realize anxiety and fear are really just opportunities to trust God is with me. I’m learning I am not alone in being afraid when I don’t know what God’s plan is. Mary was afraid. Joshua, Moses and David were afraid. But God’s message never changed. He is with us. He will help us, strengthen us, and to uphold us. We don’t have to understand when and how He does this; just trust He will. This contest season, regardless of the outcome, I’m remembering my favorite verse on fear:

“Do not be afraid, Mary; you have found favor with God.” – Luke 1:30 (NIV)

What about you?


Nick Kording is a writer, ghostwriter and editor. She was a finalist in the 2014 Rattler Contest and Splickety Love’s Inaugural edition, where her flash fiction, It Does Not Envy, was published. Nick writes Christian living, Bible studies and devotionals, as well as women’s contemporary and Biblical fiction.

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