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Archive > May 2011

Naming Your Characters

Tales have often told of the great power behind our names and that giving someone your name can allow them mastery over you. J.K. Rowling’s villain is only referred to as You-Know-Who or He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named, for fear the mere mention of his name, Voldemort, would bring his wrath. It’s no wonder then, as writer’s we often […]

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Scared? Nervous? Good.

Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one’s courage. -Anaïs Nin For my inaugural Inkpunks post, I wanted to talk about something that every writer struggles with, probably at every stage of their career. Courage. I bet at this point, you’re nodding sadly. If only you were a little braver, you’re thinking, your path would […]

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Hey, Look At ME!

Publicity, promoting yourself and getting your work into the view of other folks is hard to do. Information overload. We’ve got so many people, so many books, so many cool things to see and do and read. How does one get noticed? What often surprises me is the glut of bad advice out there. The […]

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Writing & Margaritas Don’t Always Mix

Okay, I thought I was going to write about nonfiction tips & trick, kind of an expansion of my blog post about writing bios, but honestly, I couldn’t focus enough to come up with anything. It’s 70 degrees in Portland; there’s a perfect breeze, and everybody is sitting out on their patios drinking cocktails. I […]

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Getting Started: The Hardest Part

Getting started is hard. In fact, I’ll even admit to having had a hard time starting this blog post. I procrastinated in every way I could: attending to other projects, watching Youtube videos (even horrible ones, I’ll spare you a link), cleaning, tweeting, talking on the phone, exercising, etc. I knew I had to write […]

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On SpecFic Writers as Visionaries and Mystics

Among my people, girls born blind were sometimes apprenticed to mediums. When they first bled, they entered into a long initiation of hard labor, sleep deprivation and exposure to the cold to force their sight into Anoyo, the Other World. Then they traveled on foot from village to village, and the poor folk would gather […]

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Announcement: Forums!

Earlier today, I whinged on twitter about not being productive enough in my writing. School and a full-time job are very good at devouring time. Turns out, even among Inkpunks I am not alone! Both Christie and Adam have the same lament. And I suspect more of my fellow ink-slingers would have chimed in if […]

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Beta Readers: Best Practices

While I can’t talk about what all authors want from a beta, because I am not all authors, I can say what I want from a beta, because I am one author (kinda). Maybe this will apply broadly. We shall see. The author-beta relationship is a strange one. The author exposes a vulnerable, still-in-the-works thing […]

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The Dos and Don’ts of Your Online Presence

You’ve heard it before: Fake it ’til you make it. In a larger sense this means that if we want to be viewed as professionals, we need to act like professionals. In this particular instance, we can use it as a guide toward how to comport ourselves online. Eventually we are going to make that […]

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Pushing the Boulder: Making the leap from short story to novel

The act of writing is a lot like the Greek king Sisyphus’ endless task, to push a boulder up a hill, only to see it roll down and have to start all over again. It’s a long, often thankless task and it’s all too easy to give up. We write on faith, believing that our […]

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