Writer Organization

Writers use various methods for organizing projects. Here is one article we wanted to share with our readers.

I consider myself a born writer, and I’ve been lucky to be published by mainstream media since I was a teenager. The books, the articles, and the speeches I write are good because I get enthused about topics, do thorough research, ask hard questions and have a clear focus on my intended reader. Even more important: I’m organized. And that doesn’t come easy. Learn more.

Nancy and Kelly



There are two types of writers: seat of the pantsers and outliners.

Mention the word outline in a room full of writers, and you’re sure to ignite a firestorm of passionate debate. Writers either love outlines, or they hate them. We either find them liberating, or we can’t stand how confining they are.

My experience has been that more often than not, those who swear they dislike outlines are thinking of them in the wrong ways. Outlines are not meant to trap you into preset ideas or sap your creativity before you start the first draft. Outlines are also definitely not meant to be lifeless Roman-numeral lists. Learn more.

Nancy and Kelly



We wanted to share an interesting article with you about editors.

The short answer to the above question we most often hear is this: Yes. Every book needs an editor. And while Joe gave us a nice set of tools for self-editing last week, I’d like to take a moment to answer this question on a more philosophical level.

I spend a lot of time on Facebook. And one day I floated the idea that not every writer and every book needs an editor.

That’s right. I said it. Learn more.

Kelly and Nancy

Critique Groups

Have you ever thought of joining a critique group?

With a new year facing us, now might be the perfect time to think about starting or joining a critique group.

The first thing to do is ask before you start or join is: what is the purpose of a critique group? What do I want this group to do, or not to do? If you are already involved in one group, perhaps you need to assess what that group does for you, and decide to accumulate a different group of writers with different skills. And if you aren’t already in a group, consider what you think you need the most. Maybe you need to join two groups to meet different needs. Learn more.

Nancy and Kelly

Words to Learn

Command of the English language is important for writers. This article is a great reminder for authors.

Tom’s an articulate physician, totally able to speak his mind and express a strong point of view. But when he repeatedly says “between you and I,” that grammatical error has the same effect as a big splotch of mustard on the front of his suit and tie.

Words matter-particularly, the wrong ones. Or the right ones used in the wrong way. Learn more.

Nancy and Kelly

Writing and Rejections

Writing is such a journey. Rejections come.

How many rejection letters did you get in 2015? Ten? Thirty? Sixty? Three-hundred?

If you have more than zero, you’re doing something right! I personally racked up more than sixty rejections for two different novels during the course of 2015. That’s not counting the slew of emails I received declining short stories I’d submitted to various markets.

Learn more.

Kelly and Nancy


Plotting A Story

Plotting a story can be a fun process. This article helps the writer be more organized.

To imbue your writing with the full power of outlining, you need to approach the process from a mindset of flexibility and discovery. When you do this, you’ll end up with a road map to storytelling success. Road maps are there to show you the fastest and surest way to reach your destination, but they certainly don’t prevent you from finding exciting off-road adventures and scenic drives along the way.

At their best, outlines can help you flesh out your most promising story ideas, avoid dead-end plot twists and pursue proper structure. And the greatest part? They save you time and prevent frustration. Sketching out your plot and characters in your first draft can take months of trial and error. Figuring out those same elements in an outline requires a fraction of the time—and then allows you to let loose and have fun in your first draft.

Learn more.

Kelly and Nancy


Words of Wisdom

Cec Murphy is running a series on self-care for writers. Truly it is worth it for writers and non-writers to hop on over to his site and read every post. He deals with nutrition, taking breaks, and even learning to say no.

Here are a handful of miscellaneous suggestions.

Don’t over-nurture individuals. Many of us tend to feel responsible for others when they need to be able to handle their own issues.

One day I thought that if I solve their problems, I cheat them out of the challenge to do so and to grow from the experience. Learn more.

Nancy and Kelly

Writing Takes Discipline

Writing takes discipline. It is something each writer must discover. This article features some helpful tips.

Before you begin, get yourself an alarm clock with multiple settings. I use an app called “I Can’t Wake Up!” It’s evil. It makes me do math or match countries and capitals or it won’t shut off. I hate it. And I love it. Whatever clock you choose, get cozy with it. You’re going to live your life by it. She is your harsh mistress. She is your boss. Set your first alarm early. How early? How bad do you want to be a writer? Learn more.

Nancy and Kelly

Need Holiday Encouragement?

No other time of the year can be more difficult to write than at Christmas. We writers are simply distracted with all the fun and preparations. Besides the season involves creativity, and we simply can’t resist the urge to simply BE in the moment. My excuses race from one exciting activity to the next-

Wrapping gifts.
Baking cookies.
Reading Christmas cards.
Planning Christmas parties.
Attending choir presentations.
Decorating the tree and house.
Viewing my favorite Christmas movies.
Figuring out what to wear to holiday events.
Napping because I’m tired from all the above.
Gotta write.
Gotta write.
Gotta write.Learn more.