Thursday, April 17, 2014

Don’t Limit Your Writing Options—Be Open to Trying Different Things BEFORE You Specialize

by Edie Melson

A lot of newer writers I meet find themselves overwhelmed with the myriad of opportunities in the field of writing. They struggle, trying to decide between writing articles, devotions, fiction, non-fiction, etc. Writing is a big field, and if you didn’t study some aspect of it in college, the choices can be daunting.

My suggestion—take a deep breath—you don’t have to start out with a specialty. As a matter of fact, until you’ve tried several different types of projects, you probably shouldn’t limit yourself too much. Even those of us with formal training find ourselves morphing into a different kind of writer than we envisioned at the start of our career.

Give yourself time to flex your wings. Try out different things. Write for the web, for print—even try your hand at a short story or flash fiction. Not only will variety help you determine the kind of writing you love, it will improve your ability overall. Here are some other tips to help you get started.
  • Look for a writers group in your area. There may or may not be one, but if there is, it will help immensely. It gives you perspective when you see what others are doing and you’re able to ask questions.
  • Take a look at what you like to read. What touches you? What do you find yourself saying, “If I could write anything, I’d write this?” The answer may surprise you and lead you down a different writing path.
  • Determine what you want to accomplish with your writing. Is it to touch people, glorify God, earn a little extra money? The answer may not be all one thing, but you should have one that stands out from the others.

These tips will help make your choices easier. They will also help you determine where to go for further training. For example, I might recommend one book for a writer who wants to write devotions and a completely different one for someone who is interested in freelancing as a career.

The only problem with trying a lot of different things comes if you’re not completing anything. It’s important to follow through with your projects. Don’t worry if you’re getting a lot of small projects finished while you’re working on a big one. As long as you’re making forward progress on the big one, you’re doing okay.

So, bottom line, don’t be afraid of all the choices—embrace them! And don't be afraid to try more than one project at a time. Trust me, it can be done.

I’d love to hear from you. What kind of writing do you like to do? How did you discover it?

Don’t forget to join the conversation!


Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Indie Tuesday—Are You Ready to Self-Publish?

by Jessica Keller @AuthorKeller

Frantic heart palpitations. Occasional bouts of hyperventilation. Random sweating coupled with a coffee IV. Jolting awake in the middle of the night. Moments of confidence intermingled with countless instances of hiding under your desk. Are you ready to self-publish?

Sounds like fun, right? Well, that’s a normal day for an Indie author.

Don’t get me wrong, all publishing is difficult. I’m a hybrid author—meaning I have books and contracts with traditional publishers and then I also have books that I indie publish.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Social Media Monday—Get More out of a Writers conference by Plugging in with Social Media Before it Starts

by Edie Melson

Many writers have the mistaken idea that social networking is only beneficial online. Or that it only helps when you can’t be at an event. Not true.

While it’s true that social networking can help you plug in when you’re not at a conference or event—many miss the benefits of networking online before the conference begins.

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Weekend Worship—The Stink of Death

But thanks be to God, who always leads us in triumph in Christ, and manifests through us the sweet aroma of the knowledge of Him in every place. II Corinthians 3:15 

Travel back in time with me as we watch Joseph and Nicodemus take the body of Jesus from the cross that fateful Friday and prepare it for burial. It must have taken valuable time to convince Pilate to let them have Him, but they managed. Nicodemus carried seventy five pounds of myrrh and spices to prepare the body. It was an offering worthy of a king—a dead king.

Imagine the tears they shed as they silently and gently lowered his broken body to the ground. See the abuse He suffered at the hands of his accusers. The beatings rendered Him almost unrecognizable as the blood and filth poured from His body. Still they loved Him so much.

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Social Media Image—Living Like it's Spring!

The calendar tells us spring has arrived. But I know much of the country is still wrapped in the tattered remains of a harsh winter. So often we can feel like we're living this phenomenon in our lives. 

How do you live like it's spring?

Despite the forecast, live like it's spring. - Lilly Pulitzer
Share your thoughts in the comment section below. 

I also invite you to use this image any way you like online. Post it to your blog, share it on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, anywhere you'd like. All I ask is that you keep it intact, with my website watermark visible.

Don't forget to join the conversation!

Friday, April 11, 2014

Life Lessons—10 Things Successful Writers Know AND Believe

by Edie Melson

There are certain things that writers learn as they gain more experience in the industry. These lessons serve us well when the going gets tough. One of the reasons is that we learn them by attending the school of hard knocks. 

But I’m a big believer in not always having to learn things the hard way. To that end, I’d like to share some things that successful writers know and believe.

The believe part of these truths is key. So often success or failure is just an attitude adjustment away.