The Danger of a Single Writing Project

How many writing projects are you currently working on? As creatives, we all experience burnout at some point. Whether we have simply taken on too much, set unrealistic expectations, or in my case become overwhelmed (more like obsessed) with a particular writing project, I've found that incorporating other writing projects (crazy as this sounds) has... Continue Reading →

Creating Stories With Heart

If you're a writer with publishing ambitions, I'm sure you've heard agents calling for 'stories with lots of heart'.  I've heard this term tossed around but what does it really mean to give a novel heart? I came across one of the best explanations in Donald Maas' The Emotional Craft of Fiction: How to Write the... Continue Reading →

The Writing Round Up: August 2018

WIP progress Still ploding away at draft zero folks. Current word count for my middle grade adventure novel (working title Code Green Society) stands at about 48,000 words. I'm looking forward to typing 'The End' on this manuscript. How should I celebrate? Chilled bottle of Proseco? Somehow I feel like this is leading up to... Continue Reading →

Getting back on track in August

Looks like my poor little blog is falling by the wayside... I'm now at the seventy percent mark of my middle grade novel. Honestly I'd predicted that I would be revising a completed draft by now but here we are. Still writing... After agonizing over my opening pages for such a long time, I'm still... Continue Reading →

Jim suggests questions to ask a prospective agent!

Query tip

Blog & Newsletter Archive

I had a chance to lead a class at the SDSU Writers Conference this past weekend on the five questions to ask an agent before signing with them. To be fair, I forgot what the title of the class was while I was outlining, and I ended up with this list of 20+. Regardless, the agent/client relationship is a close one, and (ideally) it will be the most consistent one in your publishing career. So you want to make sure that you’re entering the partnership with your eyes wide open, gathering as much information as you can to find out what the working relationship will be like. Even if you only have one offer of representation and know you’ll sign with that agent no matter what, ask some questions—get to know the ins and outs of how this whole shebang will work. Here are the questions I proposed, along with…

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The Round-Up: March/April Goals

So here we are at the end of April 2017! Whew! I've been crazy busy and I'm still struggling with balancing writing with the requirements of a full-time job.  I haven't really been blogging because let's be honest - blogging is also a form of procrastination when you're supposed to be writing. So let's take... Continue Reading →

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