Want to be more productive? Great ideas in this article — you’ll save time and energy.
Originally posted on Quartz:
An email account combined with Evernote is sufficient for most people to manage their complete productivity universe. This combination offers a robust feature set: messaging, reminders, note-taking, recording, lists, writing, annotation, journaling and even photo archiving. Exactly the kind of app efficiency the voice in my head wants me to achieve: “How many apps are you going to download? Why don’t you just find a couple of apps that between them do as many things as possible?”
Over the years, however, I’ve learned to ignore that voice completely. Instead I have a somewhat contradictory task-app strategy. In combination with the tasking system I mentioned last time,…
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Great advice. Just take one baby step at a time, and keep stepping…
Originally posted on Kristen Lamb's Blog:
Social media doesn’t work. Blogging doesn’t sell books. We’ll have to put out massive amounts of time and effort for no pay-off. We’ll have to learn HTML and how to manipulate algorithms to succeed and this is all for nothing. If we blog, we must write Pulitzer-quality content, but don’t bother. No one will read it, anyway.
Social media and blogging are the most soul-sucking, life-draining tasks we’ll ever have to do as authors. Quit while you can. If you aren’t already a mega-best-selling author, no one will care about you, your work or your blog.
Unless off the grid traveling, I’m always engaged with social media. I keep my “finger” on the pulse of what’s happening in my platform. Over the weekend, a Twitter follower shared an article and asked me for my thoughts.
I won’t even bother linking to the article because my goal here isn’t…
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Excellent advice from Roz Morris.
Originally posted on Nail Your Novel:
1 Whether you intend to go indie or not, learn about selfpublishing
- then you’ll know how to weigh up the value of a publishing deal. As well as the money (which usually won’t cover the time you spent writing), a publisher offers editorial guidance, copy editing and proof reading, cover design as appropriate for the audience, print book preparation, publicity using their contacts and reputation, print distribution.
As I’ve said in this blog post, all of that is services that indie authors do for themselves. Some (not all) are easy to source and manage.…
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If you’re a Mac user and a writer, give Ulysses a try. You’ll like it.
Originally posted on David Hewson:
Being then minded to buy just about every writing app that appeared on OS X I picked up Ulysses 1 (at quite a price I seem to recall) when it first came out and then upgraded to Version 2 — and still never used it. From the start Ulysses has taken a very left field view of the writing process. It set out to be minimalist before minimalism…
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Wonderful advice if you hate writing synopses. (They’re fun, if you approach them in the right way.) Tip — try writing your synopsis before you start plotting. It’s a great way to kick off your novel.
Originally posted on BRIDGET WHELAN writer:
I’m away for a few days so here is something from a year ago which I think is still interesting – synopsis training.
The agent Carole Blake, author of From Pitch to Publicationsays that any story can be boiled down to:
What does the main character want, and what’s stopping them from getting it?
If there’s no conflict, there’s no story.
Here’s a couple of examples she gives:
What does Macbeth want? To be King of Scotland.
What’s stopping him? There’s already a king, with two sons as his heirs.
Far From the Madding Crowd by Thomas Hardy:
What does Gabriel Oak want? To marry Bathsheba Everdene. What’s stopping him? She becomes a woman of property, and falls in love with the wrong man.
I’ve yet to meet anyone who actually enjoys writing a synopsis but it is an essential writing tool – especially if your aim is…
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This book is on my TBR list…
Originally posted on Austenprose - A Jane Austen Blog:
I recently read Havisham, your prequel and retelling of Charles Dickens Great Expectations, one of my favorite Victorian novels. Your choice to expand the back story of minor character Miss Havisham, the most infamous misandry in literary history, was brilliant. Jilted at the altar she was humiliated and heartbroken, living the rest of her days in her tattered white wedding dress in the decaying family mansion, Satis House. Few female characters have left such a chilling impression on me. I was eager to discover your interpretation of how her early life formed her personality and set those tragic events into motion.
Dickens gave you a fabulous character to work with. (spoilers ahead) Born in Kent in the late eighteenth-century, Catherine’s mother died in childbirth leaving her father, a wealthy brewer, to dote upon his only child. Using his money to move her up the social ladder…
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Originally posted on Kristen Lamb's Blog:
In my last post we discussed striving to find balance and giving ourselves permission to be imperfect. This brought about some interesting discussion and I’d like to expound. I confess. Americans are notorious for “shortening” the language.
We use a lot of words as synonyms when, truth be told, they aren’t. Or we have “blanket words” which mask truth, thus prevent us from making progress in life, with relationships, our career or even ourselves.
As writers, we of all people should appreciate the power of words. We have the ability to create entire new worlds that could possibly endure hundreds or thousands of years…all by using various combinations of symbols. Words have creative and destructive power. This is true in non-fiction, fiction and in life.
When I began college, I was on scholarship to become a doctor, thus spent over three years…
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Here’s how to write a bestselling romance novel:
My strategy, then, is to scour the press for stories of stalkers and weirdos, the kind where the guy has a random encounter with a woman for about 20 minutes, and basically follows her halfway around the world, getting to know all her friends, getting a job at her office, going through her trash and probably ultimately killing her in a moment of unstable desperation. I’ll then just swap out the final killing bit and replace it with “grabs her and kisses her” and have her melt in his arms.
Wonderful advice, as always, Gwen. Thanks for the helpful reminder about snapshots. I tend to forget, and then gnash my teeth when I get too happy slashing and burning. I’m putting SNAPSHOTS on a sticky and pasting it to my monitor.
Originally posted on Gwen Hernandez:
I make all of my changes directly in Scrivener. I prefer to work with two monitors when I’m referring to comments from an editor, beta reader, or proofreader. If you can beg, borrow, or buy a second monitor, I can’t recommend it enough (unless you have a mammoth one already, in which case you can probably just view both windows side by side).
Annotations are a pre-revision tool for me.…
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If you’re not using Scrivener… why not?
Originally posted on Sam Grace:
I just submitted an application to the NSF DDIG*. It’s a big grant and a big deal and getting it in makes me a very happy camper. I had already done a lot of writing for it in Word, which is where I had done all my grant writing previously. But I was feeling a definite need for a Fresh Start, and so I downloaded a trial version of Scrivener** so I could stare at a new kind of blank page.
I had heard that Scrivener is a pretty impressive writing management system from novelists and other academics. They were correct.
The first awesome thing was that I imported all the grant writing I had already done into folders in the Grant Collection I started. That meant that whenever I wanted to check or copy some previous writing I could zip…
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