4 Reasons Why You Need to Join a Writing Community

4 Reasons Why You Need to Join a Writing Community

Successful people in every field join together in order to share advice within their industry, and writers are no different. Joining an online community is an increasingly popular way for writers to unite and hone their craft. But, is a writing community right for you? We think so! Here are four reasons why:

  • It’s convenient. You can work in your living room, at your local coffee shop or while you travel.
  • It offers priceless advice. Professionals and peers alike can help you fine tune your writing. Sure, you can ask your mom for her suggestions, too, but your peers (who most likely have more experience within the industry) will do you a favor by offering constructive criticism. Continue reading

3 Fresh Ideas to Help You Organize Your Writing Desk

3 Fresh Ideas to Help You Organize Your Writing Desk

It’s the perfect time of year to bust out the cleaning supplies and tackle some serious spring cleaning. What? You’re not excited? You should be! This is a great opportunity to boost your creative flow and write that book you’ve let sit all winter. Hey, I’m not a DIY Martha Stewart type of person either, but these goals are attainable.

You might be surprised how a little organizing can enhance your work ethic and lead to a clear head with new writing ideas. It may seem like an overwhelming task, but just set aside a weekend afternoon to spruce up your writing desk. You’ll see a clean desk in no time.

1.) Clear off everything. That’s right, you heard me – everything. Make sure you have labeled baskets set aside to separate all of your knickknacks, utensils, trash, etc., as each item is pulled off. Once you sort through the items, the hard part is done. Continue reading

10 Writing Prompts to get Your Creative Juices Flowing

10 Writing Prompts to Get Your Creative Juices Flowing

If you’ve hit a snag in your writing and can’t seem to come up with any new ideas, don’t worry — it happens to all of us. There comes a time when we all need a little help to get our creative juices flowing again. Whether you need to rejuvenate your work in progress or want to start a new writing project from scratch, we’ve got a writing prompt for you.

Rejuvenate your work in progress: Here are a few ideas for breathing new life into your current manuscript. Even if you end up writing something that has no place in your actual story, you might still discover something interesting.

1.  Write your character’s obituary.
Looking ahead to a character’s death might help you fill in some holes about his life that you can turn into interesting plot points or meaningful back story. What were his biggest accomplishments? How did he die? Who is he survived by?

2.   Change locations.
Take your characters out of their natural setting, and see what happens. A heated argument between newlyweds might unfold quite differently depending on whether it takes places in their home, a crowded bus or a company Christmas party. How can you use a setting to influence behavior, build tension and change the stakes? Continue reading

5 tips to getting published in 2013

5 tips to getting published in 2013

This blog was originally posted on Dec. 31, 2012 on The Indie Book Writers Blog

There has never been a better time to be an author so if you have a manuscript you have been working on, 2013 is the year you can get published.  Here are five simple tips to help you make sure you get to your goal.

  1. Pick a date when you want to hold a copy of your book. Writing is a process, but publishing is a goal so you need a deadline. And I have found the authors who are successful in self publishing, set a date when they want to hold a copy of their book. Sounds simple, but it is really important.
  2. Decide when is the best time for you to write and make that your routine.  I have talked to hundreds of authors and the ones who get to the goal have a discipline about their writing. Most have a better time in the day when they write most productively. What is your best time to write? Do you know when it is? Have you marked out that time on your calendar everyday or most everyday. Continue reading

Quotes on Writing: Do These Famous Authors Really Know What They’re Talking About?

Most writers have a bestselling author they admire, such as Shakespeare, Stephen King or E.L. James. (Hey, we don’t judge here.) We think it’s great to have someone’s success motivate you to be a better writer yourself. Quotes are a great way to stay focused during rough patches of your career. And, with Pinterest, those famous quotes are everywhere these days. We all have famous mentors that we look up to, but do these authors really know what the heck they’re talking about?

Here we breakdown a few quotes from famous authors. Tell us what you think: Continue reading

What can a writing community do for you?

True story: I am not a writer unless you count my blog posts on Booktango or my occasional lengthy Facebook statuses. However, I do know a lot of writers, and I am lucky enough to get to speak directly to some of our authors. The one thing I hear a lot is that authors write in solitude, alone, in the quiet. Perhaps that is when the best ideas come to them or maybe they are afraid if they share their ideas or stories, someone might steal them. Whatever the reason may be, I’d like to suggest writers look for feedback during their writing and publishing process.

Who better to give a writer feedback than other writers, or better yet, potential readers? Well friends, good news! There are tools out there to help you with just that.  Writing communities offer several options to interact with others, share struggles, provide insights or ideas. The best part? Almost every (good) community has guidelines and terms of use that protect the writer from their work being copied or against really abusive feedback.

Who should join a writing community? Continue reading

Inspirational Quotes for Writers with the Blues

Writing is work. It is a blessing and a curse; a calling and a haunting. It’s incredibly rewarding, and at the same time, it’s hard.

As an author, you get stuck. You might want to quit, give up and find a new job – discover an easier passion.

Don’t.

All authors – all people, for that matter – encounter times in their lives and careers where things don’t go their way and they lose their drive to continue. When I encounter times like these, I find inspiration in the words of authors and writers I admire. Here are some of my favorite quotes from authors of various genres: Continue reading

20 spooky writing prompts to keep you up all night (better check under your bed one more time!)

You are a writer; you have a story to tell the world. Writing comes easy to you, and the words just flow out like honey. What’s that? You have writers block and are currently trying to decide between either banging your head on your desk or crying like a baby? Ahhh … the reality of writing is sometimes vastly different than the poetic dream.

Let us help spur you on to greatness with some spooky Halloween writing prompts. These may take your mind to scary, dark places. Proceed with caution!

  1. You have the option to be a ghost for one day. Who would you haunt, and how?
  2. If you had the ability to talk to the dead, would you?
  3. If you could interview one person who is no longer living, who would you interview?
  4. What is the greatest horror story of all time? What made it great?
  5. What happened to that monster that used to live under your bed? Where is he now? Continue reading

Time Management: How to Find Time to Write with a Crazy Schedule

Does it feel like if you add one more thing to your calendar it (and you!) might have a meltdown? Finding time to write in the midst of such a jam-packed schedule is daunting, but it is possible.

These three simple tips can help you carve out the time you need to actually finish the book you’ve been working on. Continue reading

Leading as a Yes Author in a world of No

Leading as a Yes author - Booktango blogOver the years I’ve talked to many authors who have tried to pitch their book to agents and traditional publishers, but all they’re hearing is a world of “no,” “not interested” and “good luck.” It can be a disheartening process. Especially for authors who know they’ve got a story to tell that could help or entertain someone. A colleague once asked, “What good is a manuscript that is sitting in someone’s desk drawer?”

As a free publisher, Booktango gives authors an alternative path to the traditional route with huge benefits. One such benefit is that you get to keep every penny of your sales when you sell an e-book through the Booktango bookstore. Another bonus is that you’re book is available through e-retailers such as Amazon®, Barnes and Noble®, Kobo®, Apple® iBooks, and Google®. 

So, you’ve heard the no’s, but what is keeping you from leading as a “Yes Author”? 

In my experience the biggest thing that keeps us from accomplishing our dreams and goals is fear and lack of belief. When I was in high-school I was told I’d never make Continue reading