Tag: #thiswritinglife

#thiswritinglife

People always ask writers where we get our ideas. Usually I say “the idea fairy” and leave it at that. Ideas come from any and everywhere, something I read or a story I heard or a headline in the media. Once it was my father watching a Cessna on floats taking off from Lake Hood…

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#thiswritinglife

When I sold my first multibook contract, back in the Dark Ages, the immediate response from my new publisher was a multipage questionnaire asking me what I would do to help them publicize my books. Would I reach out to local media? Would I do signings? Would I tour?  This was so long ago that…

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#thiswritinglife

I am frequently asked what a writer needs in the way of reference works. There are a lot of obvious answers, a dictionary, a thesaurus, a desk encyclopedia, nowadays all of which are available via Mr. Google. But if I were stranded on a desert island–with my laptop, or at the very least pen and…

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#thiswritinglife

from 7 Tips for Writing Crime Fiction, written for Writer’s Digest. 7. Backstory. Every single character gets one, including the guy who shows up once to deliver the mail. It can be as little as a sentence or as much as a subplot running through the entire narrative. The supporting cast is what makes a great…

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...I've never had a turn, not one! I haven't even been given a name; I was always just the ugly sister; put the stress on ugly...As for the prince, you think I didn't love him? I loved him more than she did; I loved him more than anything. Enough to cut off my foot. Enough to murder...But all my love ever came to was a bad end. Red-hot shoes, barrels studded with nails. That's what it feels like, unrequited love. She had a baby, too. I was never allowed.

# Permanent link to “I’m the plot, babe, and don’t ever forget it.”

#thiswritinglife

Note: On occasion on #thiswritinglife posts I include reviews of books on the craft of writing. Strunk and White’s The Elements of Style is the book I recommend most often to aspiring authors. I reread it myself cover to cover every few years. Notenote: For aspiring Alaska authors I also recommend The Associated Press Stylebook…

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#thiswritinglife

Long ago and far away I taught a class on “The Business of Writing” at the University of Alaska, Anchorage. One of the segments was how to write a query letter, and included a sample query letter I wrote to give my students an idea of how to get their toe in the door. From…

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#thiswritinglife

[from the stabenow.com archives, February 10, 2008, with present-day commentary also in bold] Okaaaaay, five days after publication of Prepared for Rage, I have received the first email wanting to know when the next Kate novel will be out. Laurie King and I were talking about this yesterday. We’re pleased and flattered that you “Just…

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#thiswritinglife

[Originally posted on October 21, 2013. Repeating it here because reading is as much a part of #thiswritinglife as writing is. And because you never know what you’ll find inside a used book, or what will happen when you write a blog post about it.] I found this copy of Ernie Pyle’s Here is Your War in…

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#thiswritinglife

People often ask if I’m afraid I’ll run out of ideas. No, that’s not what I fear. My CPA, who I’ve been with since before I sold my first book, including those seven–or was it eight? possibly nine–years I had no earned income at all, retired last year. We’ll pass over the massive trauma this…

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