Thursday, 28 December 2017

2017 Ink Tips

For the last Ink Tip of 2017, I thought I would do a look back at all of the Ink Tips from this year.

1) Accepting Criticism and Edits

Writers tend to flip back and forth between two modes: feeling brilliant and feeling like a fraud.  This can get even worse during the editing process, which can bring up a lot of insecurities.  But a few simple questions can help to get an author through the worst of it and that ensures that their book gets the work they need.

2) Writing What You Don't Know

These days it's pretty easy for an author to step on someone's toes.  And the key to that is research.  There are three areas where imagination is not quite enough: creating the impossible, the learnable, and the researchable. 

3) Chasing the Shiny

I love exploring new ideas.  Sometimes when I should be working on finishing up the old one.  On the other side of the coin, I know authors who get bogged down in eternal editing.  So I put together suggestions for both groups on how to keep from getting trapped.

4) How to Say Goodbye

Sometimes, no matter how awesome a scene, or a phrase, or a character is, an author has to let them go.  So I put together my steps for letting go of what I love when it doesn't fit the story.

5) How to Sell at Conferences

As the digital landscape gets more and more crowded, conferences are becoming one of the best way to get an author's books in front of a new audience.  Yet most authors will readily admit that they don't make their money back at conferences.  But there are ways to increase your chances of making a sale.

6) Style and Voice

What is an author's voice?  It's hard to define but easy to recognize.  Take a random paragraph from your favourite authors and it'll be easy to pick out one from another even without the cues of identifying names or settings.

7) The Tyranny of Daily Writing

"Write every day or else you aren't a writer."  There are dozens of variations of this advice and while it's usually aimed at overcoming impostor syndrome or writer's block, the second half makes it a dangerous assumption.  There are all kinds of ways to be a writer and everyone has to find their own path.

8) Is "Show, Don't Tell" False Advice?

"Show, Don't Tell."  It's one of the first pieces of writing advice that we hear.  But it assumes a common experience that can exclude a wide range of minority experiences, creating a barrier to understanding.

9) A Look At Romance Tropes

Romance has a shorthand for describing books that can get confusing for the uninitiated.  So I put together a quick reference of the most common options.

10) Tortoise Victories: Writing Slow

These days all a prospective author hears is "publish, publish, publish" as a career path, but the truth is that writing slow can be just as effective, if you do it right.

I hope you enjoyed the posts.  I'll be starting up with new Ink Tips on January 25th and then the last Thursday of every month.  Happy New Year!

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