Wisdom Wednesday: Gail Kittleson

How do you organize all of your story information, and how do you respond to negative reviews?

Today we have author Gail Kittleson on Wisdom Wednesday to share her favorite writing tips for authors and new writers.

Thanks for joining us, Gail!


Name: Gail Kittleson

Genre: Historical Romance

Latest Release: Kiss Me Once Again

Writing Tip for Authors:

Pay no attention to negative reviews unless your publisher brings up a concern. Why read them and expend all that emotional energy, when there are POSITIVE ones to focus on?

I think you bring up a good point that unless there’s something that we can learn from them and do better, there’s no reason to focus on those negative reviews. What you write won’t be everyone’s cup of tea, and that’s okay! You will find readers who love your genre and will enjoy your writing. 

Writing Tip for New Writers:

If you’re a character-driven writer, the plot may evolve in snitches and snatches as you do your research. It really helps to keep a little notebook with sections for each character. For me, it’s difficult to remember dates and connections that might come in handy later, as the story develops.

“Alice’s family sailed from Germany on the PROVOST the first time, when she was eight. Sea was wild.”

“Next trip was on the Heinrich, and the main thing she remembers is the food. Her youngest brother got sick, and she had to care for him. This was when she determined to become a nurse.”  (That younger brother became a medic in WWII…)

Without notes like this, I tend to get the trips or the brothers mixed up. These jottings can also be very helpful in writing a flashback later.

This a such a helpful tip! I have so many notebooks sitting on my desk right now. I like to dedicate one journal for each story. I keep notes on my computer as well, but I really like having those notebooks handy. 

Kiss Me Once Again PB Cover Final

No one ever accused Glenora Carson of being a breathtaking beauty. Her tall, gangly figure and angular face are more solid midwestern stock than Hollywood glamour. But Joe liked her. He even told her, “You’re the one for me.” He gave her a locket with his picture inside, to remind her of him while he was away, serving his country on the U.S.S. Arizona. After December 7, 1941, Glenora shelves her dreams of attending college on the scholarship she was offered by Iowa State University, locks her heart away, and focuses on holding down the home front by helping out the family business – Carson’s Garage. The grease-stained overalls didn’t do much to compliment her female figure, but they cover her female heart well enough. That is, until Hank Anderson, a wounded warrior back from battle, walks into the garage and into Glenora’s life. Is an old maid’s future Glenora’s fate, or will Cupid throw a wrench in her plans?


 

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Gail writes from northern Iowa. She and her husband enjoy their grandchildren and exploring WWII sites.

The writing bug bit Gail later in life, along with a love for the World War II era. She’s hopelessly addicted. Her historical fiction honors Greatest Generation women who made a difference despite great odds. Her second love, teaching, leads to facilitating writing workshops and retreats, where she loves cheering others on.

 

 


Gail’s Social Media: 

 

Thank you for joining us today for Wisdom Wednesday. Don’t forget to check out Gail’s book, Kiss Me Once Again and connect with her on social media. Do you have an organization tip or how to deal with negative reviews? Share it with us in the comment section!

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Wisdom Wednesday: Sharon Rene + Giveaway

I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving! 

I’m back at the computer this week after spending time with family and co-hosting an FB event on Cyber Monday. 

How are you doing with your writing goals this week? Need a boost to get you through the week? Today, I have author Sharon Rene with us. Welcome, Sharon!


Name: Sharon Rene

Genre: Children’s fiction

Latest Release: A Mixed Bag of God’s Grace

Writing Tip for Authors:

Don’t be afraid to develop your unique voice. There are so many writing “rules!” The rules are great, and my writing has improved dramatically because of them but they can become stifling. At times, I have to remind myself that writing is an art and we all have a special style and voice that shouldn’t be ignored.

You’re right, we can’t forget to let our voice shine through when we are writing. We all want polished, error-free books, but voice is important too. We need to find the perfect pairing of both.

Writing Tip for New Writers:

New writers need to study the craft and develop a style. Experiment with different areas of writing – flash fiction, short story, creative non-fiction. Attend writer’s conferences and join a local group if possible. I recommend becoming a part of the Scribes Critique group on ACFW. I have learned so much about writing from this group and made a lot of good friends.

These all great tips! Learning how to write in different ways like flash and short stories are a huge benefit to our writing. We constantly need to find new ways to learn and grow. 

A Mixed Bag of God's Grace_5x8_FRONT

 

A Mixed Bag of God’s Grace is a collection of short stories for children, ages seven to eleven. The stories are biblical, historical and contemporary. The biblical section includes Daniel in the Lions’ den from the perspective of one of the hungry lions and the apostle Peter’s miraculous escape from prison. In the historical section, the reader travels to England in the middle ages and encounters a queen, knights, and a ship full of pirates. Modern young Christians face a variety of issues in the contemporary section. A devotion, prayer, and scripture follow each story.

 


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Sharon Rene enjoys writing children’s and young adult books. Several of her flash fiction stories have been published by Splickety Magazine, and she’s also had nonfiction pieces published in Chicken Soup for the Soul and Life Changing Miracles. Her book for children ages seven to eleven is entitled A Mixed Bag of God’s Grace and was published in May 2018. Currently, she’s working on a YA speculative series. She is a columnist for Pursue Magazine, an online magazine for Christian teens, and also a member of The Storyteller Squad blog.

 


 

Sharon’s Social Media: 

Purchase Link for A Mixed Bag of God’s Grace: Click here

Website:  www.sharonreneauthor.com

Facebook:  www.facebook.com/sharonreneauthor

Twitter:  https://twitter.com/SharonRene4

The Storyteller Squad blog:  https://storytellersquad.com/

Book Bub: https://www.bookbub.com/authors/ane-mulligan

Thank you for joining us today! Sharon is giving away a copy of her book, all you have to do is comment on this post to enter! The winner will receive a paperback copy if in the USA and ebook if outside of USA.

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Wisdom Wednesday: Ane Mulligan

Have you ever read a book and no matter how hard you tried, couldn’t relate to the characters? 

Today, author Ane Mulligan shares how to help your characters more real and to reach the heart of your readers. 

Thanks for joining us, Ane! 


Name: Ane Mulligan

Genre: Women’s fiction

Latest Release: A Magnolia Blooms in Winter. It’s part of a novella collection: A Southern Season – Four Stories From a Front Porch Swing.

Writing Tip for Authors:

Motivation is the key to great characters and a good plot. To reach the hearts of readers, they have to relate to our characters. To do that, we have to make them real. They have to have deep seated motivation, not superficial. That motivation comes from a past wound. Find that wound and you’ll find their motivation. Once you know that, you will know how your character reacts to things, why she/he seeks the goal they do. You can actually plot a novel by the motivation.

Great advice, Ane! I’ve read books where I couldn’t relate or believe the characters and what ends up happening is that I can’t root for them to achieve their goals. Everyone has wounds from something, and if you can show that motivation in your writing, you’ll get that connection that you’re talking about.

Writing Tip for New Writers:

Enjoy the journey and grow a thick skin. Don’t be in such a hurry to publish that you miss the fun along the way of the friends and contacts you make. And it’s vital to grow that rhino skin. Critiques may sting at first. Contest judges’ remarks can hurt. But if you have rhino skin, you can view them subjectively and apply what profits you and grind the rest to dust beneath your heel. Snicker.

I haven’t heard anyone call it rhino skin yet, but I love it, and the part about dust beneath your heel! 😉 

ASouthernSeason LG
A Southern Season – Four Stories from a Front Porch Swing

Four seasons. Four stories. Each one set in the enchanting world of the South. These are the kinds of stories your grandmother told you from a front porch swing.

A Magnolia Blooms in Winter by Ane Mulligan

With Broadway stardom within her reach, Morgan James returns home in winter to help an old friend. Maybe it’s just nostalgia, but when she sees him again, an old flame rekindles. When she’s called back to NYC to take the lead in a new musical, will fame be worth losing the man she loves?

 


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While a large, floppy straw hat is her favorite, award-winning author Ane Mulligan has worn many different ones: hairdresser, legislative affairs director (that’s a fancy name for a lobbyist), drama director, playwright, and bestselling novelist. She firmly believes coffee and chocolate are two of the four major food groups. Ane resides in Sugar Hill, GA, with her artist husband and a lovable, goofy dog.

 


 

Ane’s Social Media: 

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/anemulligansouthernfriedfiction

Twitter: http://twitter.com/#!/AneMulligan

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/anemulligan/

Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/anemulligan/

Amazon Author page: amazon.com/author/anemulligan

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/4469633-ane-mulligan

Google+: https://plus.google.com/+AneMulligan

Book Bub: https://www.bookbub.com/authors/ane-mulligan

 

 

Thank you for joining us today! Make sure you connect with Ane on social media and check out her story, A Magnolia Blooms in Winter

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Wisdom Wednesday: Laura Hilton & Rachel J. Good

It’s our first Wednesday during NaNoWriMo!

How’s your writing going? I’m playing a little bit of catch up today, but I have new words on paper, and that’s all that matters! 

Here’s a little bit of Wisdom Wednesday to get you back to writing and reaching your goals. 


Name: Laura Hilton

Genre: Christian fiction Amish

Latest Release: Love’s Christmas Blessings

Writing Tip for Authors:

Don’t wait for inspiration. Just write.  It’ll come.

This is a huge tip that has helped me so much in my writing journey. I think new writers have this idea that writing is going to be amazing because of inspiration. That’s not always the case. Most days, I have to force myself to sit down and write, but as you said, the words will come.

Writing Tip for New Writers:

Read, read, read. Learn the rules. And write

Yes. Don’t stop reading and learning. Get craft books on writing, brush up on grammar skills. Keep reading, learning, and writing.

laura cover Christmas…
A time for fellowship, family, and love. Enjoy two novellas from beloved Amish authors and fill your heart with the wonder of the Christmas season.Winter’s Treasure

Paris and Quil have sparks from the beginning, especially since his appearance causes a vicious rivalry between friends. But who can resist when a chance meeting beginning with donuts and coffee ends with a missing person, puppies, a skunk, and a sleigh ride—not to mention a trip the Amish young people plan to Niagara Falls. Could it also involve falling in love?

Mistletoe and Miracles

An exhausted son, Daniel, and a recent widow, Fern, join forces to brighten a grumpy old man’s day and cheer up a shy, displaced little girl. However, things take a serious turn when Fern’s daughter goes missing on a school field trip. With a little help from Daniel, Fern discovers more than just her daughter’s whereabouts. Will four lonely hearts create special bonds to make it a Christmas to remember?

 


laura

Laura V. Hilton is an award-winning, sought-after author with over twenty Amish, contemporary, and historical romances. When she’s not writing, she reviews books for her blogs, and writes devotionals for blog posts for Seriously Write.

Laura and her pastor-husband have five children and a hyper dog named Skye. They currently live in Arkansas. One son is in the U.S. Coast Guard. She is a pastor’s wife, and homeschools her two youngest children.

When she’s not writing, Laura enjoys reading, and visiting lighthouses and waterfalls. Her favorite season is winter, her favorite holiday is Christmas.

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Inspirational author Rachel J. Good writes life-changing, heart-tugging novels of faith, hope, and forgiveness. The author of several Amish romance series, she grew up near Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, the setting for many of her stories. Striving to be as authentic as possible, she spends time with her Amish friends, doing chores on their farm and attending family events.

Rachel’s Amish series include Sisters & Friends (Charisma House & Harlequin), Love & Promises (Hachette/Grand Central), Hearts of Amish Country (Annie’s Book Club), and the forthcoming Surprised by Love (Kensington). She also has several anthologies in print as well as the Amish Quilts Coloring Book.

To learn more about Rachel, visit her at www.racheljgood.com.


Laura’s Social Media: 

http://www.amazon.com/Laura-V.-Hilton/e/B004IRSM5Q 

visit my blogs: http://lighthouse-academy.blogspot.com/   

twitter: @Laura_V_Hilton

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/pages/Author-Laura-V-Hilton/161478847242512

Pinterest:  http://www.pinterest.com/vernetlh/

Rachel’s Social Media Links:

www.racheljgood.com

https://www.facebook.com/racheljgoodnovels/

https://twitter.com/RachelJGood1

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/14661177.Rachel_J_Good

https://www.pinterest.com/racheljgood1/

https://www.amazon.com/Rachel-J-Good/e/B019DWF4FG

https://www.bookbub.com/authors/rachel-j-good

https://www.instagram.com/rachelj.good

Newsletter sign-up: http://bit.ly/1qwci4Q


 

Thank you for joining us today! 

Make sure you check out their social media links, blogs, and their new release, Love’s Christmas Blessings.

 

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Wisdom Wednesday: Ada Brownell

Happy Halloween!

My social media is flooded today with pictures of costumes, and I love it. We went to a few trunk or treats over the weekend since it’s supposed to rain today.

Not only is it Halloween, but it is the last day to get everything ready for NaNoWriMo! Yep. The craziness of chasing after the 50,000-word goal starts tomorrow. I’ve participated several times over the years, whether I was starting a brand new project like it asked for, or finishing up a novel that was already started. Sometimes, we need the boost that NaNoWriMo gives us. It’s a chance at becoming disciplined in our writing.

To get us in the spirit of NaNoWriMo, our Wisdom Wednesday guest is author Ada


Name: Ada Brownell

Genre: Fiction and Non-Fiction

Latest Release: What Prayer Can Do

Writing Tip for Authors:

Think. What is the worst thing that could happen to my character in this situation, and is there a way out? For non-fiction, think. Is this idea original? Could I make it original by approaching the subject from a different angle or using illustrations that make it different?

I love writing my characters into corners to see what they would do about the situation. It’s a great way to help if you’re feeling stuck. 

Writing Tip for New Writers:

With non-fiction don’t start writing until you think about the story or the subject and try to define questions readers might ask. Take notes on your thoughts. If you think it through, you don’t necessarily have to create an outline. But let your illustrations and transitions guide you to the ending you want. I never outline fiction, but in the same notebook where I write profiles on my characters, I also make a list of complications for the plot. It’s not a story unless there is conflict.

Conflict is what drives the story. I like to make an outline when I’m starting and then let the characters take over the story. I tried planning every detail in my earlier writings, and always felt stuck. Now that I’ve found a good balance between the two, it’s easier for me.

prayer cover

Does God still heal bodies, work miracles and answer prayer?

Ada Nicholson Brownell’s latest book, What Prayer Can Do contains amazing testimonies of how God intervened in people’s lives when they prayed. Read about a blind man instantly healed, even after he learned Braille. A child with hydrocephalus healed after prayer.  A forest fire turned away. Sinful rebellious people changed in a moment. Marriages saved, and many other miracles.

Fifty-five chapters and wonderful testimonies written by Ada Brownell about What Prayer Can Do originally published in The Pentecostal Evangel.

WHAT HAPPENS IF A DESIRED MIRACLE DOESN’T COME? The book begins with an introduction from the author, “Why I Still Believe God Heals, “that explains why she knows God still does miracles even though she lost a daughter to cancer. The article was first published in the online version of Enrichment Journal, a magazine published by the Assemblies of God for Spirit-filled ministers.

Buy the whole book, What Prayer Can Do herehttp://ow.ly/9CEI30h4IdL


ada brownell

Ada Brownell has been writing for Christian publications since age 15 and spent much of her life as a daily newspaper reporter. She has a B.S. degree in Mass Communications and worked most of her career at The Pueblo Chieftain in Colorado where she spent the last seven years as a medical writer. After moving to Springfield, MO in her retirement, she continues to freelance for Christian publications and write non-fiction and fiction books. She occasionally writes op-ed pieces for newspapers, and judges writing contests.

 


 

Ada’s Social Media: 

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/#!/AdaBrownellWritingMinistries

Twitter: @adabrownell

Blog: http://inkfromanearthenvessel.blogspot.com Stick to Your Soul Encouragement

Amazon Ada Brownell author page: http://www.amazon.com/-/e/B001KJ2C06


 

Thank you for joining us today!

Are you participating in NaNoWriMo? Add me as a buddy: erinhoward2002. Comment below with yours and what project you’re working on!

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Wisdom Wednesday: Normandie Fischer

When you think about writing, do you think about the whole process or do you dream about your story but never seem to get anywhere? While we should always have a dream to achieve, it’s what comes in the middle that makes that dream come true. 

Today, author Normandie Fischer is here to tell us what exactly it takes to make that dream come true. Welcome to Wisdom Wednesday, Normandie!


Name: Normandie Fischer 

Genre: Women’s Fiction

Latest Novel: The Sea Prayers

Writing Tip for New Writers:

You’ve heard it from myriad sources, the same advice, the same words of encouragement. Keep writing. Keep going. Persevere.

Since my first book released, I’ve had folk approach me: “I’m going to write a novel someday.” Or, “I could write a novel if I chose to.” Or, “I have a perfect idea for a book.”

The I’m-going-to, the I-could-if, and the perfect-idea folk have one strike against them. All their writing is dream-based, when what they need is to begin. Just begin. And then—oh, and this is the hard part—keep going.

Bringing a novel to completion and then to publication is hard work. It takes determination and perseverance, especially if you care about quality. Quality is hard-won. Quality takes time and a willingness to listen and learn.

Back when I was editing for a small press, I ran into writers with good ideas who were convinced they knew far more than I—or any other editor. Convinced they’d written a great piece, they weren’t willing to learn. They knew better. They didn’t need an editor. They didn’t need to listen.

Well, fine, but that’s never true for anyone. We all need other eyes, other perspectives, an editor’s honing skills. I use both a content editor and a copyeditor because I want my work to be the best it can be.

Writing is hard work. Sticking with it, learning and growing, is even harder. Oh, and then there’s the miserable part that involves rejection—from agents and publishers, from readers. No one wants to hear that her story isn’t good enough, but I don’t know a single author who hasn’t had to cope with rejection along the way. It’s part of the process.

How you handle it depends, in large part, on your reasons for writing. If you write for glory and fame—and actually think you deserve both—the devastation of rejection will be a lot more painful than if you write because it’s your passion, your calling.

I’m convinced I’m supposed to write. I love to do it, and even without an audience, I’d continue. As a woman of faith, I also write to please my Lord, which means I adhere to the command in Ecclesiastes 9:10: “Whatever your hand finds to do, do with all your might.”

With all my might. With all the care I can give it, with all the perseverance it might take, with all that is in me, with humility, as an offering. And the rest is up to my Lord.

I couldn’t agree more!
Normandie, you’ve given a great insight on what is needed to turn those dreams into a reality. 

Sea Prayers ebook 9

A waitress, a megastar, and an ex-addict wage war for the heart of a young girl.

Thirteen years ago, a spiked drink left Agnes with a permanent reminder of the man who date-raped her.

Her daughter looks like him, sounds like him, and even listens to his platinum records (of course, the dude’s a mega star because nothing is fair) but Brisa is everything Agnes has in the world. At least, she is until the day this music star sets his sights on getting himself a ready-made family.

He’s got millions of dollars, millions of fans, a high-powered legal team, and half Brisa’s DNA. Agnes has a run-down house, a friend who’s almost three years sober and afraid to say he loves her, and a lawyer willing to work pro bono.

Oh, and the whole town of Beaufort. That’s right. She’s got all those Beaufort folk at her back, praying to the God she has rejected, and not one of them is going to let Brisa go without a fight.

Another story of faith redemption from the author of Sailing out of Darkness.


Author Pic

Normandie Fischer is a sailor who writes and a writer who sails. After studying sculpture in Italy, she returned to the States, graduated suma cum laude, and went to work in the publishing field, moving from proofreader up the ladder to senior editor, honing technical tomes, creative non-fiction, and, later, fiction.

She and her husband spent a number of years on board their 50-foot ketch, Sea Venture, sailing from San Francisco to the Sea of Cortez, Mexico, and on through the Panama Canal. They now live in coastal North Carolina, where she takes care of her aging mother and, whenever possible, enjoys her two grown children and two grandchildren. She is the author of six novels.

 


 

Make sure to connect with Normandie on social media and her blog, and check out her latest release, The Sea Prayers.

Website: www.normandiefischer.com

Twitter: https://twitter.com/WritingOnBoard

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/NormandieFischer/

Amazon Author Page: https://www.amazon.com/Normandie-Fischer/e/B00BSIF2NI/

The Sea Prayers Purchase Links:

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07H2MWMYC/

BOOKs2Read: https://www.books2read.com/u/m0geDl

Kobo:  https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/the-sea-prayers

Barnes and Noble: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-sea-prayers-normandie-fischer/1129474278

Ibooks  https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/id1435120402

https://apple.co/2MSvKZq


Thank you for joining us today!

What kind of writing challenges are you facing? For me, I had to make the decision to sit down and write (from beginning to end) and not worry if it was amazing or if it was junk. I let that fear hold me back for a long time. It was difficult, but I did it, and it was a little easier with the second book. I’m starting my third book this week, I know I may still have those doubts, but I know I’ve done it twice now, and I know you can too!

Wisdom Wednesday

Behind the Story: World Building

Writing is filled with moments that are exciting and brimming in creativity. There are also moments of procrastination and doubt. Learning how to push through the days of zero inspiration makes all the difference in those who write as a hobby and those that write as a career.

There’s a moment in writing that I love almost more than any other aspect and that’s the moment between projects. When I’m dreaming and plotting about what is coming next. 

The Soul Searcher is going through the editing phase with my publisher, and I’m starting The Silencer, (book 3) this week. YAY!

However, my brain can’t stop thinking about what is coming next after book three.

The idea of a new project, of world building, is so energizing and exciting to me. I love creating a new series idea and everything that comes along with it. New characters, plots, worlds, and motives all go into world building. This is one reason why I love fantasy writing. With urban fantasy, I’m using our world as the base, but I still get to create, from scratch, a new world to fit in our world. The result of how they react to each other is exciting.

I polled my Beta Reader group and asked what they would like to see next from me. There were several choices: Fairy Tale Retelling, Dystopian, or a novella supernatural series related to my current series world.

It was a close poll!

However, the supernatural series won, and ever since my brain has reeled with all sorts of ideas. I can’t reveal too much yet, (you have to read The Soul Searcher first, so there aren’t any spoilers) but the novella series will be in the same story world as The Kalila Chronicles but with a whole new set of characters and new abilities and societies. I can’t wait to dive in and begin writing and see how these two series are woven together.

World building isn’t just for fantasy writers. Every writer uses this when they create their own stories. Writing friends, what part of world-building do you enjoy the most?

world building