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Clutter-Free Writing Space: Writescape Guest Post

What’s your writing space like?

Small House Big City

I’m posting my recent guest blog post on the wonderful site Writescape.ca. Their fabulous blog ‘Top Drawer’ is a treasure trove of writing hacks and inspiration.

https://writescape.ca/site/2018/12/the-minimalist-writer/

The Minimalist Writer

Open concept is a must in all modern IKEA-catalogue-worthy homes. The glossy photos selling Swedish furniture promise you zen and relaxation. The reality is, unless you are living in a staged home, the open-concept layout likely means you’re being more overwhelmed by constantly looking at your overstuffed abode.

And for some writers, that can be deadly.

When you don’t have an uncluttered space to disappear to, your ability to hunker down and write can be seriously hampered.

Yes, you can write amid household chaos, but on some level you will always be fighting the distraction. It’s something I’ve had to struggle with until I found a solution.

Writer in a small house

Without a basement rec room, our main floor…

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Formatting Manuscripts – What you need to know!

Some good information here, but note – this publisher is in Australia (I think) so the quote and line spacing thing is different than in the US.

In general, you don’t have to do any formatting to your manuscript if you plan on having someone else format it for you. They can do all that. You just concentrate on creating a great story! 🙂

Spring with Emily Dickinson – Brain Pickings

We always need inspiration. Spring definitely gets me going! How about you?

ckbooksblog

Feeling inspired by spring. Here are some thoughts from Miss Emily on the subject. Thanks to Maria Popova

“Today is very beautiful — just as bright, just as blue, just as green and as white, and as crimson, as the cherry trees full in bloom, and the half opening peach blossoms, and the grass just…

Source: Spring with Emily Dickinson – Brain Pickings

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2019 UW Writers’ Institute conference recap

Me on a publishing panel at the UW Madison Writer’s Institute this weekend. Also spoke on editing and heard some great speakers.
I don’t look very happy, but I was!! I was having a good time! I have to remember people take pictures – Ug!

HOLLY RECOMMENDS

The annual UW Writers’ Institute conference took place this past weekend.

The conference opened with moving, beautiful readings from participants of the UW Odyssey Project.

There were great keynote speakers like Jane Friedman and Jennie Nash, and one of the most talented, supportive networks of authors I’ve ever met. We learned about everything from creating a podcast to improving our websites and much, much more. This was my fourth time attending this conference and I’ve published over twenty books, but I still walk away with tons of new ideas and inspiration. Not to mention, this industry changes so quickly that it’s impossible to ever know it all.

Proud to be included in the success panel along with Kristine Hansen, Bibi Belford, Rita Schunk, Greg Renz, Heather Shumaker, Kristine Ziegler, rr campbell, and Julie Holmes. Photo by Kristin Oakley.

Chatting…

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My Top Ten Twitter Tips for Writers

If you are twitter but not sure what to do with it, Rebecca gives you some ideas. Thanks Rebecca!

Rev. Rebecca Writes

Hello, Friends!

As you may know, my name is Rebecca and I love to write. One of my goals in life is to eventually find a home with a traditional publishing house. I love to write and I view my writing as an important aspect of my ministry. I’ll be honest, social media doesn’t come naturally for me. When I found out that traditional publishing houses want to see writers with “significant social media reach,” I almost despaired.

For years I actively worked to keep my social media presence quiet. My mission in life for over eight years was to become an ordained minister in the United Methodist Church. I wanted to remain quiet on social media because I was terrified that I would say something, like something, or share something that someone somewhere might dislike. I was afraid of making problems for myself.

I also had my job as…

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How to Get Your Email Subscribers to Leave Quality Reviews—Legitimately

Who doesn’t need more book reviews? No author I know of. Dave Chesson and Jordon Ring have put together a very helpful post sharing tips and 3 steps to asking for reviews and building relationships with your readers. Even though this is written for folks who have reader email list, I think some of the tips can be helpful in any interaction with a reader – email or in person.

Remember – any time you send or sell a book, politely and sincerely ask for a review. If you’re mailing it, put in a hand written request. I use colored paper to help it stand out a bit more. If I am asking in person, I look the person in the eye just before they are about to leave me and as for an online review,  letting them know how helpful it is to me. I don’t tell them where to leave the review, I just leave that up to them. My name and my book title anywhere on the web is helpful, so it really doesn’t matter.

Asking for a review will up your chances of actually getting your reader to leave one!

Thanks for the helpful post, guys!

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One of the most difficult parts of book marketing (if not the most difficult) is getting reviews for your book, particularly quality reviews that exceed one sentence. Why is this? Because each potential reviewer is a busy person with a lot on their plate, so their time is valuable. Besides, remember back when you weren’t an author?  It wasn’t evident to you how important reviews were, so you didn’t think to go out of your way to leave a review. It just sometimes…happened. So, as you can see, readers and fans need a little nudge and some simple tactics to get

Source: How to Get Your Email Subscribers to Leave Quality Reviews—Legitimately


Had to share a picture of the kids in my summer school writing and publishing class at New Glarus Elementary in Wisconsin.

ss class 2018

It was elementary and middle school grade kids who spent a week with me learning about what goes into publishing a book, some basics about writing a story and then writing their  own story.

I’m always impressed with the creativity of these kids. It’s a fun time with budding writers. Now I am in the process of putting their stories together into a book that they can s

hare with family and friends. Pretty exciting!

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Where Publishing Dreams Become Reality

Book Awards (and Reviews!) – Readers’ Favorite

Readers Favorite - Book Reviews and Award Contest

There is still time to enter the 2018
Readers’ Favorite Book Award Contest

Only 3 days left to enter your book – FINAL DEADLINE
Enter your manuscript, published or unpublished book, eBook, audiobook, comic book, poetry book or short story. We offer 4 award levels in each of our 140+ categories, allowing you to only compete against books in your particular genre for a more fair and accurate contest, giving you the greatest chance of becoming an award-winning author!

 

  • Chance to win one of $50,000 in free prizes just for entering.
  • Chance to have your book made into a movie or TV show.
  • Chance to be published by an award winning traditional publisher.
  • Chance to be represented by a leading author marketing and PR firm.
  • Chance to be represented by a leading literary management company.
  • More features including a book review, award ceremony, and publicity.

When you enter, you automatically get a free review that they post for you on facebook, twitter, google+, Barnes & Nobel, Instagram and Pinterest. They also ask the reviewer to put it on their personal Goodreads account (if they have an account there) and you are able to put excerpts on your Amazon author central page (Amazon won’t let them post a review).

I entered my second Agnes Kelly Series book “Narrow Escape in Norway” this year and already received a 5 Star review! I won’t know if I’ve won anything until September.

“…This story is for all those readers who enjoy suspense, mystery, and adventure. I like the way the author creates secrecy and intrigue around the disappearance of Agnes’ father and pulls readers in to learn what exactly has happened to him. The fluidity in writing gives a good pace and movement to the story and the adventure, suspense, and laughs make the book fascinating to young readers. There is a sense of excitement and curiosity that builds up while trying to find out about Agnes’ father, which will keep readers glued to the book till the very last page. I am sure that, like me, young readers will be waiting for the next book.”

                                                                                     ~  Mamta Madhavan