author’s thoughts

Guest Blogger: Judith Gonda – Reflections on 2020: Publishing My First Book During a Pandemic

Reflections on 2020: Publishing My First Book During a Pandemic by Judith Gonda 2020 started out with such promise. The first book in my landscape architect Tory Benning mystery series, MURDER IN THE SECRET MAZE, was set to release on February 26. I was finally going to have a book published. The corona virus first …

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Guest Blogger: Angie Gallion – Life Gets in the Way

Life Gets in the Way by Angie Gallion When I read Debra’s post about best-laid plans sometimes going awry, I could relate. No matter how hard we try, life sometimes gets in the way. My writing journey has been filled with life getting in the way. I was a big dreamer growing up and I …

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Guest Blogger: Lynn Chandler Willis – The Fish, the Plane Crash, and the Coyote

The Fish, the Plane Crash, and the Coyote By: Lynn Chandler Willis In my former life, I owned and published a bi-weekly newspaper. Circulation 15,000, thank you. Not bad for a totally ad-supported paper that covered one incorporated rural town and a couple unincorporated surrounding communities. The paper lasted thirteen years and probably could have …

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Guest Blogger: Lynnette Austin – Small Towns – Where Everybody Knows Your Name

Small Towns—Where Everybody Knows Your Name by Lynnette Austin Small town versus city. It’s one of the first things a writer needs to know when plotting a story. Generally, though, the story itself makes that decision…or the main character, although it’s sure fun to drop a big city gal into a small town or to …

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Guest Blogger: Sandra Robson – How I Write Mysteries

HOW I WRITE MYSTERIES by Sandra Robson When I start writing a new book, I begin with a blank piece of poster board and a strong sense of place. A three-story, desolate-looking house in Newport, Rhode Island, an ancient white stucco church in New Mexico, a London street in relentless rain—the aura of an intriguing …

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Guest Blogger James M. Jackson – Finding Your Voice: Plotter or Pantser

Finding Your Voice: Plotter or Pantser by James M. Jackson Every author is told to “find your voice,” as though they left it under the hydrangea in the side yard. I suggest that if you write enough, your voice will find you. Voice is what comes naturally to you: the cadence of your sentences, the …

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Guest Blogger: Kathryn Lane – It All Starts With the Subconscious

It All Starts with the Subconscious by Kathryn Lane A recurring question I’m asked when I speak at book clubs is whether I plot the entire novel before I start writing. I usually respond by defining the two basic types of writers – detailed plotters or fly-by-the-seat-of-your-pantstypes. Once I’ve decided to begin a new book …

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Guest Blogger: Warren Moore – The Pinocchio Process

The Pinocchio Process by Warren Moore I’ve been writing since before I knew how to write – no, really. There are reel-to-reel tapes of a three-year-old me reciting songs and stories. My dad asks, “Did you make that up?” I say I did, and he says, “Pretty weird, kid.” It really hasn’t changed too much …

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Guest Blogger Margaret Fenton – Sometimes a Bad Day Turns Into a Good Day, Especially If There’s Gin

Sometimes a Bad Day Turns Into a Good Day, Especially If There’s Gin by Margaret Fenton 2007 was a great year. I went to Killer Nashville in August. I paid a lot of extra dollars and was given the opportunity to pitch my unpublished manuscript to either an agent or a representative from Oceanview Publishing. …

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